The company looks back on its contributions to fight the disease in observance of World Malaria Day, April 25, 2013.
Malaria is still one of the major causes of mortality and morbidity in the world today. With its global research and development activities and its broad portfolio of innovative solutions, Bayer CropScience contributes to the fight against malaria. The company has been a leader in malaria prevention for over 50 years and offers a unique and comprehensive vector control portfolio, Bayer said.
“Malaria is still too often a question of life or death, especially for children under the age of five. Our commitment to research and development has provided the technology and expertise behind products that protect millions of people in Africa and across the world today,” said Dr. Gunnar Riemann, member of the executive committee of Bayer CropScience and president of the Environmental Science Division. “By providing our considerable history and expertise in all four areas of vector control – water, air, surfaces and personal protection – we help make a lasting and sustainable impact on the rural development of local communities."
Another reason why Bayer CropScience is committed to playing an ongoing leading role in the fight against this preventable tropical disease is that agriculture is not exempt from malaria’s devastating impact. With 80 percent of the world’s famers living in malaria-endemic regions, the disease has a significant impact on the availability of labor for both small and large-scale farming and food security, and is thus a major contributing factor to poverty.
VECTOR CONTROL. Bayer CropScience offers integrated vector control solutions and also provides its expertise to support the development of local communities in Africa through training in the correct use of vector control products and education. This includes specially developed cartoon booklets aimed at teaching children how to use bed nets, avoid being bitten by mosquitoes and recognize the early signs of malaria. "Train the trainer" sessions, in particular, ensure that national malaria programs have the capacity and knowledge to develop effective intervention teams throughout their countries.
The portfolio is built around a wide range of complementary products against malaria, such as larvicides, indoor residual sprays and long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets. One of Bayer CropScience’s key brands is Ficam VC, a World Health Organization Pesticide Evaluation Scheme (WHOPES) - recommended indoor residual spray regarded as an important breakthrough in resolving mosquito resistance to pyrethroid-based insecticides. Its active ingredient, bendiocarb, is highly effective and shows no cross-resistance to other insecticides, according to the manufacturer. A more recent example of Bayer CropScience’s continued commitment in the fight against malaria is LifeNet, the first major innovation on the long-lasting insecticide treated bed net market for some 15 years.
PUBLIC-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS. Bayer CropScience believes that the power of public-private partnerships is key in the global fight against malaria, the company said. “Only through close collaboration between the people who rely on our products and our expertise, national malaria programs and international donor organizations can the full benefit of our solutions be realized,” said Riemann. “We believe it is essential to actively involve all our stakeholders in dialogue and joint projects.” The company is an active member of the international malaria community and is represented in numerous working groups, including the World Health Organization (WHO) malaria policy group and working groups on neglected tropical diseases, integrated vector management and long-lasting insecticidal nets.
Furthermore, in 2012 Bayer CropScience and the IVCC, Liverpool, UK, a registered charity in the field of product development and information systems for vector control, extended their research partnership for another 3 years. This collaboration addresses future vector control options by focusing on the search for a new insecticidal active ingredient that is particularly effective against resistant mosquito strains.