THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2016

Equatorial Guinea meets with Sanaria on malaria vaccine trial

Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the president of Equatorial Guinea, met with representatives of the Sanaria Corporation met last week to discuss progress on an upcoming malaria vaccine trial, the country said on Wednesday.

Mbasogo was in New York to address the U.N. General Assembly and meet with multiple heads of state and heads of government. During the meeting, Stephen Hoffman, the president and founder of Sanaria, shared the company's mission with President Obiang and explained the development of the vaccine trial.

President Obiang and a delegation from Equatorial Guinea visited Sanaria's laboratory to view a demonstration of the production of the malaria vaccine, which is called PfSPz. The delegation witnessed the dissection process to remove malaria-causing sporozoites that are used to develop the vaccine and observed the storage and cold chain transportation of the vaccine.

Equatorial Guinea, the only Spanish-speaking country in Africa, is the second African nation to sponsor a malaria vaccine clinical trial. President Obiang reaffirmed his country's commitment to battle malaria, a disease endemic in West and Central Africa.

Also partnering on the vaccine trial are the Ifakara Health Institute, Noble Energy, Medical Care Development International and Marathon Equatorial Guinea Production, Ltd.

Chris Schwabe, an MCDI representative, said the ultimate goal of the vaccine trial is to eliminate malaria in the next five years.