Today in Research: Experimental Malaria Vaccine; TV as Babysitter

Today in research: counting 10 trillion digits of Pi, encouraging progress for a malaria vaccine, another TV watching warning, and MIT researchers who are peering through concrete walls.

  • An experimental vaccine to help stave off malaria is showing progress. The vaccine, called RTS,S or Mosquirix, is touted for reducing the risk of African children getting malaria. And the clinical trial of "more than 15,000 newborns and babies in seven African countries found the vaccine cut the risk of being infected with the malaria parasite by about half and the chances of getting deathly ill from an infection by more than a third," The Washington Post reported. The study was funded by, among others, "$200 million in grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and $300 million from [global pharmaceutical company] GlaxoSmithKline," USA Today disclosed. Andrew Witty, executive at the pharma company, told Reuters that the drug will be affordable: "We are not going to make any money from this project." [Reuters, The Washington Post, USA Today]
  • TV as a babysitter for toddlers, and just TV watching at all, is discouraged. "Clearly, no one is listening to this message," said Dr. Ari Brown, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics who was quoted by The New York Times explaining the new guidelines set out by the Academy. In short: Children under two shouldn't be watching TV as it's not very good for their development. The Times, however, notes what appears like a loophole: "The latest guidelines do not refer to interactive play like video games on smartphones or other devices, but to programs watched passively on phones, computers, televisions or any other kind of screen." [The New York Times]

Read the full story at The Atlantic Wire.

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