Advancing a malaria vaccine for better global health outcomes

20 March 2024

Professor Sue Ann Costa Clemens CBE, Chair of Global Health at the Department of Paediatrics and Head of Oxford Latam Research Group – a collaboration between Oxford and Brazil, aimed at strengthening our commitment to global health – met with His Excellency Antonio Patriota, Brazilian Ambassador to the UK, to discuss the co-development of a Malaria vaccine and advance public health outcomes in Brazil.

Brazil is the first country in the world to announce a government policy to eradicate 14 infectious diseases that disproportionately affect poor communities. One of these is malaria which remains a significant public health problem worldwide, particularly in low-income regions like the Amazon where there is limited access to healthcare. The Ambassador also met Professor Teresa Lambe OBE, Calleva Head of Vaccine Immunology at the Oxford Vaccine Group, Professor Simon Draper, Professor of Vaccinology and Translational Medicine at the Department of Biochemistry, and Dr. Angela Minassian, Honorary Consultant and Chief Investigator on the Malaria Vaccine Programme in the Department of Biochemistry and Oxford Vaccine Group.

Dr Minassian, who is working with Professor Draper on a vaccine for Vivax Malaria, said: “We were delighted to host the Ambassador and to discuss potential plans to partner on development, including clinical testing of a new vaccine against Vivax Malaria. Making a safe and effective vaccine available to resource poor regions, with high disease burden, in the Brazilian Amazon could make a huge public health impact. We hope this goal will now become achievable with the support of this important new partnership”.

Professor Clemens CBE said: “This partnership between Oxford University and its Brazilian counterparts marks a significant step forward in the fight against neglected diseases and this visit underscores the united front we present in combating global health threats. By leveraging the expertise and resources from both academia and government, we can advance science, vaccine development and control strategies to protect vulnerable populations and reduce the burden of these diseases.”

Professor Teresa Lambe OBE, Calleva Head of Vaccine Immunology at the Oxford Vaccine Group said: “We were delighted to host the Ambassador and his delegation in Oxford, and excited to discuss the many opportunities to work together. Only through open collaboration, as we did during the COVID-19 pandemic, will we be able to tackle the biggest challenges of the 21st century that we face as a global community.”

Ambassador Patriota said: “Touring the Department of Biochemistry at Oxford University and witnessing the groundbreaking research on a malaria vivax vaccine provided a unique and invaluable experience. This endeavor is vital for saving lives not only in Brazil but on a global scale. The dedication and remarkable progress achieved by the researchers are truly commendable. The Embassy of Brazil looks forward to fostering continued collaboration and shared advancements in global health, particularly within leading scientific centres in the United Kingdom.”

Notes to editors:

Media enquiries: Please contact the Department of Paediatrics press office at [email protected] or Laura Borg on +44 (0)7773226017

  • The Department of Paediatrics is a world leader in child health research and hosts internationally renowned programmes in drug development, gastroenterology, haematology, HIV, immunology, neuroimaging, neuromuscular diseases and vaccinology. Its work spans from early proof-of-concept and fundamental science all the way up to its application in clinical settings. Visit our website
  • The Oxford Vaccine Group (OVG) designs and conducts studies of new and improved vaccines for children and adults around the world and is based in the Department of Paediatrics at the University of Oxford. Visit our website and follow us on X.
  • The Department of Biochemistry is dedicated to biomedical research of the highest quality, including groups working on infection and disease processes. The Kavli Institute for Nanoscience Discovery is a groundbreaking interdisciplinary science institute focused on world class nanoscience research. Within the Department and the Kavli INsD, the Draper Lab works on human immunology and the development and clinical translation of new malaria vaccines. Visit our website and follow us on X.
  • The University of Oxford has been placed number 1 in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings for the eighth year running, and number 3 in the QS World Rankings 2024. At the heart of this success are the twin-pillars of our ground-breaking research and innovation and our distinctive educational offer. Visit our website