Iron Chelation as a Chemotherapeutic Strategy for Falciparum Malaria
To examine the effect of iron chelation against human malaria, 37 Zambians with asymptomatic Plasmodium falciparum infections were randomly assigned to 72-hr infusions of desferrioxamine B or placebo. Mean concentrations of ring forms decreased significantly with desferrioxamine B (P < 0.001) but not with a placebo. Over seven days of observation, mean parasite concentrations remained at the initial levels in six individuals originally given placebo, but decreased promptly with administration of desferrioxamine B (P = 0.001). Mean parasitemia was significantly lower for up to four weeks in 16 subjects treated with desferrioxamine B when compared with the eight who had received placebo only (P = 0.027). We conclude that iron chelation has antiplasmodial activity and may offer a new therapeutic strategy for falciparum malaria.
Gordeuk, V. R.; Thuma, Philip; Brittenham, G. M.; Biemba, G.; Zulu, S.; Simwanza, G.; Kalense, P.; M'Hango, A.; Parry, D.; Poltera, A. A.; and Aikawa, M., "Iron Chelation as a Chemotherapeutic Strategy for Falciparum Malaria" (1993). Biology Educator Scholarship. 159.