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Research in West Africa has shown that combining a malaria vaccine with a preventative drug can lower hospital admissions and deaths by more than 70%.

But the medical cocktail must be taken in the run-up to the rainy season.

Malaria mainly affects children and young people, killing more than 400,000 people each year, mostly in Africa.

The new research was carried out among 6,000 children aged between five months and 17 months in Burkina Faso and Mali, both badly affected by the mosquito-borne disease

Scientists at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, who helped conduct the research, have described the findings as “striking”.

They hoped the new combination approach could have the potential to prevent malaria in large parts of Africa.

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