Innovation That Matters

Numbers of recorded malaria cases have been increasing, due to rising resistance to the insecticides used in bed nets, and a shift in mosquito habits | Photo source skeeze on Pixabay

A moisturising ointment that protects against malaria

Health & Wellbeing

A mosquito-repellent ointment has been launched in Burkina Faso, which allows mothers to moisturise their children’s skin, while also protecting them from malaria

Spotted: An engineer from Burkina Faso, Gérad Niyondiko, has developed a mosquito-repellent body lotion that fits seamlessly into your daily skincare routine. The number of malaria cases recorded has been increasing, due to rising resistance to the insecticides used in bed nets and a shift in mosquito habits. After hundreds of tests, Maïa was created. It is a 2-in-1 ointment that both moisturises the skin with shea butter, and protects from mosquitoes with safe repellents.

Women in Burkina Faso traditionally clean themselves and their children’s bodies every night, before lathering ointment onto their skin and spending time outdoors before sleeping. Niyondiko’s team saw the potential in the mosquito-repellent ointment’s compatibility with this behaviour. Indeed, the ointment has been proven to provide six hours of complete protection against Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes, and three hours of protection against Aedes mosquitoes.

There are plans to further conduct field studies in Burkina Faso and Tanzania, as the team is aiming to gain WHO accreditation, as a vector control tool. The team has also partnered with a regional cosmetics manufacturer to keep the price down, at €1.95 for a 200ml tub. Although this costs 20 per cent more than traditional ointments, many women have agreed that the benefits of protecting themselves against malaria are more worthwhile. 



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