Vaccine against deadly Ebola virus coming up soon


    NEW DELHI: The world may soon get a vaccine against deadly Ebola virus. An experimental ebola vaccine has been found highly protective under a trial led by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

    The findings of the trial – conducted in Guinea involving 11841 people during 2015- also supports the results of earlier trials which were published last year.

    The vaccine – rVSV-ZEBOV- is the first to prevent infection from one of the most lethal known pathogens.

    The findings of the latest trial which were published recently in The Lancet show among the 5837 people who received the vaccine, no Ebola cases were recorded 10 days or more after vaccination.

    Apart from WHO, Guinea’s Ministry of Health, Medecins sans Frontieres and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health also participated in the trial.

    “While these compelling results come too late for those who lost their lives during West Africa‘s Ebola epidemic, they show that when the next Ebola outbreak hits, we will not be defenceless,” said Dr Marie-Paule Kieny, WHO’s Assistant Director-General for Health Systems and Innovation, and the study’s lead author.
    The vaccine’s manufacturer, Merck, Sharpe & Dohme, this year received breakthrough therapy designation from the United States Food and Drug Administration and PRIME status from the European Medicines Agency, enabling faster regulatory review of the vaccine once it is submitted
    Since Ebola virus was first identified in 1976, sporadic outbreaks have been reported in Africa. But the 2013-2016 West African Ebola outbreak, which resulted in more than 11 300 deaths, highlighted the need for a vaccine.
    Though no patient has been detected in India with the virus so far, even a single imported case can create much damage in a densely populated country.
    The trial took place in the coastal region of Basse-Guinee, the area of Guinea still experiencing new Ebola cases when the trial started in 2015.

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