Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Wow--half of all human deaths from a single organism

The Tenacious Buzz of Malaria: Humans have underestimated the disease for millennia; new research, and new worries
The malaria parasite has been responsible for half of all human deaths since the Stone Age, and one in 14 of us alive today still carry genes that first arose to help protect us from its ravages. Malaria has shaped our trade and settlement patterns, and our demographics. Today, it sickens 300 million every year, and kills nearly 1 million, despite the fact that we've known how to cure it (with parasite-killing drugs) and prevent it (by avoiding mosquito bites) for over a century. And even as the fight against malaria gains momentum, research reveals that malaria's tentacles continue to dig ever deeper.

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