Ebola vaccine trial for great apes shows promise

By Alexandra Simon-Lewis

In March 2014, West Africa became ground zero for the largest Ebola outbreak in history. Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea experienced thousands of cases of the haemorrhagic fever, with countries across the world recording similar cases of the often fatal virus. It is estimated that the outbreak claimed in excess of 11,000 lives.

Initial transmission of the virus occurs through contact with infected wildlife and then spreads from person to person. Now, a vaccine trial on a small number of captive apes in the United States shows promise in addressing the dangers of Ebola virus disease (EVD) within this vector.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, used an oral Filorab1 vaccine on a group of ten captive chimpanzees at the University of Louisiana Lafayette in the US. The Filorab1 vaccine inserts the gene encoding the Ebola glycoprotein (GP) into a replication of a previously tested rabies (RABV) vaccine. This was due to the high safety and effectiveness of the parent rabies vaccine in previous oral trials. Six of the apes were given the drug combination orally and four intramuscularly.

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Source: News Now/Wired Online

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About Cholo Brooks 15816 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.