The Nigeria Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), has disclosed the discovery of a new malaria vector named Anopheles Stephensi somewhere in northern Nigeria.
Director General of the Institute, Professor Babatunde Salako, told newsmen in Lagos during his 63rd birthday ceremony on Monday night that the discovery is one of the institute’s recent research discoveries.
The vector, he said, spreads malaria called plasmodium falciparum. He described the vector as a rugged one that is very difficult to eradicate and has not been found anywhere near West Africa.
“This has implications for malaria control in Nigeria because, hitherto, the vector was not known in West Africa sub-region.”
Professor Salako further disclosed that the Institute is currently working with five groups in a consortium to develop local vaccines in Nigeria, stressing that the idea is to ensure that Nigerian researchers are able to learn the development process from the beginning to the end.
“This is important so that when we have a new epidemic or disease, known or unknown, it would be possible for Nigeria to develop its own vaccine, he said.”