Ebola Treatment Shown to Work on Infected Monkeys

Aug. 22, 2013, 9:02 a.m.

A new Ebola drug grown from spe­cial to­bacco plants has been shown to cure mon­keys that were already dis­play­ing signs of in­fec­tion by the vir­al hem­or­rhagic fever, the Los Angeles Times re­por­ted on Wed­nes­day.

Oth­er Ebola coun­ter­meas­ures have been shown to work on in­fec­ted an­im­als be­fore they start dis­play­ing symp­toms of the highly vir­u­lent and leth­al dis­ease. However, this is the first time a drug has demon­strated any ef­fect­ive­ness after signs of the vir­us have mani­fes­ted. That is re­garded as a cru­cial cap­ab­il­ity in the event of a real-life dis­ease epi­dem­ic, ac­cord­ing to vir­o­lo­gist Gene Olinger, who works at the Army Med­ic­al Re­search In­sti­tute of In­fec­tious Dis­eases at Fort De­t­rick, Md.

“We’ve pushed the op­por­tun­ity to treat people to the point where they walk in and say, ‘I have a fever,’” said Olinger, co-au­thor of a re­port on the new Ebola drug pub­lished by the Sci­ence Trans­la­tion­al Medi­cine journ­al on Wed­nes­day. “A lot of folks in the field would have thought pro­tect­ing an an­im­al at the time of fever and viremia is too late to have a clin­ic­al be­ne­fit.”

Ebola is one of the most deadly and con­ta­gious dis­eases known to ex­ist in nature. The lack of ad­equate vac­cines and an­ti­dotes for the dis­ease have made it a ser­i­ous worry for biode­fense spe­cial­ists con­cerned about its pos­sible ap­plic­a­tions as a bio­lo­gic­al weapon.

In the re­cent study, sev­en in­fec­ted rhesus mon­keys were ad­min­istered the ex­per­i­ment­al treat­ment MB-003 through their veins once every three days. Three of the mon­keys did not die, res­ult­ing in a stat­ist­ic­ally not­able suc­cess rate of 43 per­cent.

Fort De­t­rick sci­ent­ist and lead study au­thor James Pet­titt said it is prob­able that in a real-life out­break, the drug would be ad­min­istered at a high­er dosage and with great­er fre­quency.

“We think we’ll get bet­ter res­ults,” the re­search­er said.

Grow­ing the drug from spe­cially de­veloped to­bacco leaves is not only less costly than con­ven­tion­al cell-based meth­ods, but also al­lows for large batches of the drug to be pro­duced on fairly short, weeklong sched­ules, ac­cord­ing to the Times art­icle.

Olinger said fur­ther meas­ures will be taken to im­prove MB-003 by adding to it more Ebola an­ti­bod­ies that were dis­covered by a dif­fer­ent group of re­search­ers.

What We're Following See More »
FOR IMPROPER SPENDING, INFLUENCE
Trump Inauguration Spending Now Under Investigation
2 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Federal prosecutors in Manhattan are investigating whether President Trump’s 2017 inaugural committee misspent some of the record $107 million it raised from donations, people familiar with the matter said. The criminal probe by the Manhattan U.S. attorney’s office, which is in its early stages, also is examining whether some of the committee’s top donors gave money in exchange for access to the incoming Trump administration, policy concessions or to influence official administration positions."

Source:
WOULD HAVE CROSSED NATIONAL FORESTS
Federal Judges Nix Proposed Atlantic Pipeline
3 hours ago
THE DETAILS

In a rare rebuke to energy companies in the Trump era, "a panel of federal judges has rejected permits for the Atlantic Coast natural gas pipeline to cross two national forests and the Appalachian trail in Virginia, finding that the national Forest Service 'abdicated its responsibility' and kowtowed to private industry in approving the project. The harshly worded, 60-page decision issued Thursday by three judges from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit is part of a string of legal setbacks for the 600-mile pipeline. The $7 billion project, being built by a consortium of companies led by Dominion Energy, is planned to carry natural gas from West Virginia, through Virginia and into North Carolina."

Source:
PINS KHASHOGGI KILLING ON MBS
Senate Moves to End Support for Saudi War
4 hours ago
WHY WE CARE
REP. POLIQUIN HAD CHALLENGED THE LAW
Federal Judge Upholds Ranked-Choice Voting in Maine
6 hours ago
THE LATEST

"A federal judge on Thursday rejected Republican U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin’s constitutional claims against ranked-choice voting and denied the incumbent’s request for a new election against Democratic Congressman-elect Jared Golden. U.S. District Court Judge Lance Walker ruled that, contrary to the arguments of Poliquin’s legal team, the U.S. Constitution does not require that whichever congressional candidates receives the most votes—or 'a plurality'—be declared the winner. Instead, Walker ruled the Constitution grants states broad discretion to run elections."

Source:
SAUDI ARABIA, ISRAEL, AND THE UAE
Mueller Probing Middle East Countries' Influence Campaigns
7 hours ago
THE DETAILS

Officials working under Special Counsel Robert Mueller are investigating Middle Eastern countries' attempts to influence American politics, and are set to release the findings in early 2019. "Various witnesses affiliated with the Trump campaign have been questioned about their conversations with deeply connected individuals from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Israel ... Topics in those meetings ranged from the use of social-media manipulation to help install Trump in the White House to the overthrow of the regime in Iran." Investigators are also probing meetings organized by Lebanese-American businessman George Nader, and Joel Zamel, "a self-styled Mark Zuckerberg of the national-security world with deep ties to Israeli intelligence."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login