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An international group of investigators called MalariaGEN have identified a new genetic locus in African children associated with resistance to severe malaria (Malaria Genomic Epidemiology Network. Nature. doi:10.1038/nature15390 [published online September 30, 2015]). The study reports that the locus lies near a cluster of genes that code for receptors called glycophorins, which are involved in the malaria parasite’s invasion of red blood cells.
Friedrich MJ. Novel Genetic Variant Confers Protection Against Malaria. JAMA. 2015;314(19):2014. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.15324