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Eliciting an effective malaria vaccine has been the goal of the scientific community for many years. A malaria vaccine, added to existing tools and strategies, would further prevent and decrease the unacceptable malaria morbidity and mortality burden. Great progress has been made over the last decade, with some vaccine candidates in the clinical phases of development. The RTS,S malaria vaccine candidate, based on a recombinant P. falciparum protein, is the most advanced of such candidates, currently undergoing a large phase III trial. RTS,S has consistently shown an efficacy of around 50% against the first clinical episode of malaria, with protection in some cases extending up to 4 years of duration. Thus, it is hoped that this candidate vaccine will eventually become the first licensed malaria vaccine. This first vaccine against a human parasite is a groundbreaking achievement, but improved malaria vaccines conferring higher protection will be needed if the aspiration of malaria eradication is to be achieved
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