The Moses of malaria / druk 1


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ISBN: 9789052352084
Uitgever: Erasmus Publishing

Man and other animals are the hosts of bugs, those fellow-diners on or inside us that may cause diseases. Malaria parasites in our blood bring about fever and danger of death. Fortunately, the body defends itself, and a balance may settle. That phenomenon fascinated the Dutch parasitologist Nicolaas Swellen grebel and he felt the dilemma: exterminate the parasites and the mosquitoes, or control the disease, while maintaining the equilibrium in a population. As a biologist and unlike most doctors, he saw parasites as ┬┐mere disturbers of the peace┬┐.

Swellengrebel laid his professional basis in the Dutch East Indies and led the study of malaria in the Netherlands, its last stronghold in Northern Europe. As member of the Malaria Commission of the League of Nations he commuted between malaria regions abroad and at home. His hundreds of letters and publications are tokens of a broadening experience and expertise.

Eradication and control often kept malariologists in separate camps. Swellengrebel as a biologist spanned the ideas of doctors and mosquito fighters, based on research. His vision of versatile collaboration in public health serves as a lasting example. There is a long way ahead, coping with malaria and other parasitic diseases.

Jan Peter Verhave (1942) is a biologist, who specialised in parasitology and malaria. Long before a malaria vaccine was in sight, he studied the (immune) responses after infection, both in laboratory models and in the field. Teaching human parasitology, including laboratory diagnosis was another of his capacities. In his spare time, he focused on the history of malaria and

(tropical) medicine, and after retirement from academic life he devotes much of his interest to this field. In the present book he shows how complicated the fight against malaria was, is and will be.

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