Ebola

Heckler

The unspeakable mass
Joined
Jul 16, 2004
Messages
5,291
Reaction score
2,169
Points
219
Well it made the Daily Mirror and that's relatively mainstream.

As noted on this thread : Here

Ebola's vector (in it's deadliest Ebola Zaire flavour) is bodily fluids so the chance of a plane crew catching it are pretty slight unless they catch a drop of blood during a final stage grand mal seizure in the eye/mouth or on an open wound.
 

Dingo667

Gone But Not Forgotten
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Aug 27, 2004
Messages
1,813
Reaction score
63
Points
64
Are you sure Heckler?
I was reading a book about the history of Ebola, where it stated that the first person who had it was on a flight where the "danger of spreading it was larger because the air is circulated rather than fresh". This would suggest that it can spread through air unless of course the air is humid in which case both are right.
I'm no expert but that's what I read. So I dunno really.
 

ninja_cat

Gone But Not Forgotten
(ACCOUNT RETIRED)
Joined
Aug 3, 2001
Messages
580
Reaction score
11
Points
49
2 things I noticed-

1) The idea of Ebola Reston being deadly- wasn't this from the breakout in Washington and was not deadly at all. (The dreadful film Outbreak was loosely based on this.)

2) Heckler is right and Ebola is spread through contact with body fluids. IIRC the book which talks about airborne spread of Ebola in an airplane is talking about a "worst case scenario" where the virus mutates.

What is fortunate about Ebola is that it has a very short life span outside of the host and that it goes from infection to death in a very short time so tends to burn itself out quickly
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Ebola 'kills over 5,000 gorillas'

Scientists fear Ebola and hunting combined could wipe out gorillas
More than 5,000 gorillas may have died in recent outbreaks of the Ebola virus in central Africa, a study says.
Scientists warn that, coupled with the commercial hunting of gorillas, it may be enough to push them into extinction.

The study, published in the US journal Science, looked at gorilla colonies in Republic of Congo and Gabon. Ebola is also blamed for many chimpanzee deaths.

One of the most virulent viruses known, Ebola has killed more than 1,000 people since it was first recorded in 1976.

Ebola causes viral haemorrhagic fever - massive internal and external bleeding - which can kill up to 90% of those infected.

Scientists are still working on a vaccine and there is no known cure.

Ape-to-ape transmission

The latest study, carried out by an international team, has confirmed previous concerns about how badly the virus is affecting gorillas.

EBOLA
One of the most virulent viral diseases
Damages blood vessels and can cause extensive bleeding, diarrhoea and shock
Killed more than 240 people in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1995
Transmitted by infected body fluids
Kills up to 90% of victims, depending on the strain
There is no cure
"Add commercial hunting to the mix, and we have a recipe for rapid ecological extinction," the report says.

"Ape species that were abundant and widely distributed a decade ago are rapidly being reduced to remnant populations."

The researchers, led by Magdalena Bermejo of the University of Barcelona, focused on western gorillas, one of two gorilla species. The other is the eastern gorilla.

In 2002 and 2003, several outbreaks of Ebola flared up in human populations in Gabon and Congo.

The researchers found a "massive die-off" in gorillas in Congo's Lossi Sanctuary between 2002 and 2004.


"The Lossi outbreak killed about as many gorillas as survive in the entire eastern gorilla species," the study says.

The researchers concluded that the apes were not only infected by other species, such as fruit bats, but were also transmitting the virus among themselves.

Ebola was passing from group to group of the endangered animals, they found, and appeared to be spreading faster than in humans.

Outbreaks of the disease in humans have sometimes been traced to the bush meat trade.

According to World Health Organization figures, Ebola killed 1,200 people between the first recorded human outbreak in 1976 and 2004.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6220122.stm
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Its back! More than 100 dead so far.



Deadly Ebola resurfaces in Congo

More than 200 people died in a previous outbreak in Kikwit
An outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo has killed at least five people says the World Health Organisation.
Blood samples from the southern province of Kasai were sent to laboratories specialising in haemorrhagic fever.

More than 100 people have died and many more have fallen sick in a recent fever epidemic in central DR Congo.

Scientists say some deaths could have been from a virus called Shigella.

Three months ago, people started falling sick from a mystery virus in several villages around Kananga, the capital of West Kasai region.



Emergency response teams are now being sent to DR Congo to try to contain the outbreak.

Ebola is untreatable and almost always fatal.

It is thought to be transmitted through the consumption of infected bush meat and can also be spread by contact with the blood secretions of infected people.

DR Congo's last major Ebola outbreak killed more than 200 people in 1995 in Kikwit, about 400km (249 miles) west of the current outbreak.

The last major incidence of the disease was in Uganda in 2001 when more than 400 cases were reported and more than half of the patients died.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6989194.stm
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
And heres more news. 120 dead according to NS, but not all of them may be due to Ebola.

An outbreak of Ebola haemorrhagic fever has been confirmed in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday. The UN agency is sending a team of international experts to investigate.

Samples from five people have tested positive for the Ebola virus in the southern province of Kasai Occidental, where authorities have reported some 120 deaths among 300 sick people in the past four months, says Gregory Hartl, a WHO spokesman.


More at:
www.newscientist.com/article/dn12624-eb ... congo.html
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
An article on developing a vaccine for Ebola. I'm posting it in full as you have to register to access it.

At the Leipzig zoo's Wolfgang Köhler Primate Research Center last summer, a 3-year-old female gorilla named Kibara was going berserk. She had just been given a new type of food, deep-red colored candies with a rich mango scent. Kibara had never smelled mango before, and she couldn't get enough of the aromatic treat. "Kibara was crazy, running from one point to another, cracking open [the candies], and eating them up," recalls Martina Neumann, a behavioral biologist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig. "She was just like, 'this is sweet; I love it.'"

Kibara was the subject of a pilot study on delivering oral vaccines to great apes. Now that a handful of experimental Ebola vaccines have proven effective in laboratory monkeys, researchers need to find a way of delivering a vaccine to apes in the wild. But the baits used for decades to deliver a rabies vaccine would melt and dissolve in the hot, wet tropical rainforests of Africa. Apes also have nimble hands, meaning they handle baits differently than foxes and raccoons, and their palates lean more to sweet fruits than the rabies baits' fishmeal flavor. A completely new design was needed.

In 2007, Peter Walsh led a group of Max Planck primatologists who teamed up with experts from the German vaccine manufacturing company, IDT Biologika, for a preliminary feasibility study into designing an oral Ebola vaccine. "I know all the science, but I don't know anything about the vaccine development business," says Walsh, a quantitative ecologist who had shown that a single Ebola epidemic killed approximately 5,000 gorillas in a 2,700-km2 region of central Africa (Science, 314:1564, 2006).

The design they narrowed in on was a 6-centimeter, puck-shaped lozenge, containing agar, fructose and eventually, they hoped, the viral vaccine. The bait was coated in paraffin wax to withstand the harsh African climate, but what color and scent would best attract the apes? From August 2007 to April 2008, the researchers ran near-monthly trials testing different color-smell combinations with the captive gorillas, chimps, and orangutans at the Leipzig zoo.

The researchers tried three different fruit colors (red, orange, and yellow) with three different scents (banana, fig, and mango). On the first choice trial, however, the 27-year-old silverback gorilla named Gorgo simply ate all four baits he was given. Across all the trials, the color of the bait didn't seem to matter much, but there was a clear preference for mango scent, especially among the chimpanzees. Because they were studying only a limited number of captive animals, though, Adrian Vos, a wildlife biologist with IDT Biologika who was involved with the trials, is quick to note that the trials don't qualify as a scientific food-preference study, and none of the work has been published in any peer-reviewed journals. "We only wanted to see if the animals would accept the baits, and how they would handle them," he says.

Walsh is now planning a trip to Africa this summer to test the baits in the field. First, he plans to investigate bait placement strategies. The best bet, says Vos, is probably placing baits low in the tree canopy to avoid both ground-scrounging competitors like rodents, as well as monkeys and birds higher up in the tree tops.

For now, the baits will just contain sugar, but ultimately Walsh and Vos plan to incorporate a live, attenuated Ebola virus. One concern is "spillage," says Vos: The apes either drop much of the bait on the floor or swallow it whole, so only a small amount of virus is usually absorbed in the cheek epithelial cells. Thus, the baits should contain a live virus that can replicate in the blood system and build up a large enough viral titer.

There is another concern: A live virus can revert to a virulent Ebola strain, which might harm other animals that are drawn to the candy-like bait. So Walsh also plans to test hypodermic darts containing freeze-dried vaccine - he calls them biobullets - though finding the apes and getting close enough to vaccinate can be difficult. "The gorillas and the chimpanzees will decide which approach is more suitable," says Vos.

http://www.the-scientist.com/2008/8/1/22/1/
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
First Swine Flu! Now Swine Ebola!

Discovery Of Ebola In Pigs Raises Concerns
10 Jul 2009

Scientists studying a strain of Ebola virus found in domestic pigs in the Philippines last year suggest that although the particular strain is not one linked to disease in humans its emergence in the human food chain is cause for concern.

The investigation was the work of scientists from the US Department of Agriculture at the Plum Island Animal Disease Center in New York, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, and the Department of Agriculture in the Philippines and is published as a paper in the 10 July issue of Science.

Ebola and Marburg viruses belong to the filovirus family, which cause hemorrhagic fever, characterized by bleeding, vomiting and diarrhea, and a 90 per cent death rate.

Outbreaks of infection appear to happen in humans and primates at random, making it very important to locate sources of host organisms that could be acting as potential reservoirs.

Ebola-Reston was found in pigs raised on farms near Manila, the capital of the Philippines after farmers reported high rates of sickness and deaths among their livestock in May 2008. The infected pigs were originally investigated because they were experiencing an unusually severe outbreak of porcine reproductive and respiratory disease syndrome.

Reston is deadly in monkeys but doesn't appear to infect humans: it is the only member of the filovirus family that does not, said the authors, who nevertheless expressed concern that it has emerged in the human food chain.

When they studied isolates of the virus taken from pig samples, the researchers found that they were more divergent from each other than from the original strain isolated in 1989, when Reston was first identified in crab-eating macaques imported to the US from the Philippines (Reston is the place in Virginia where the lab was based that first spotten the new strain).

When you have isolates that are more different from each other than from an original strain, it indicates they have multiple ancestral origins (they did not descend in a neat line from generation to generation). This suggests, said the authors, that the Ebola-Reston isolated from the pigs is a strain that has been around since before 1989 when Reston was first found in the crab-eating macaques.

Although Reston has not been found to cause deadly hemorrhagic fever in humans, when the researchers tested some of the pig farmers they found antibodies to Reston in their blood, suggesting pig-to-human transmission had taken place, even though the farmers showed no symptoms.

The concern is that pig herds could be convenient hosts for Reston to mutate into a form that does cause illness in humans, and also, if pigs can be hosts to Reston, as this outbreak reveals, then perhaps they could also be hosts to other Ebola strains that do cause harm to humans.

There are lots of unknowns, a lot more questions than answers, and this is the worry, said the researchers, because pigs are in the human food chain and there is lots of contact between pig herds and humans.

"Discovery of Swine as a Host for the Reston ebolavirus."
Roger W. Barrette, Samia A. Metwally, Jessica M. Rowland, Lizhe Xu, Sherif R. Zaki, Stuart T. Nichol, Pierre E. Rollin, Jonathan S. Towner, Wun-Ju Shieh, Brigid Batten, Tara K. Sealy, Consuelo Carrillo, Karen E. Moran, Alexa J. Bracht, Gregory A. Mayr, Magdalena Sirios-Cruz, Davinio P. Catbagan, Elizabeth A. Lautner, Thomas G. Ksiazek, William R. White, and Michael T. McIntosh.
Science 10 July 2009 325: 204- 206.
DOI: 10.1126/science.1172705

Sources: CDC, Science.

Written by: Catharine Paddock, PhD


Article URL: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/157147.php
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Ebola and Marburg viruses may be much older than thought
http://www.physorg.com/news196925610.html
June 28th, 2010 in Biology / Evolution
Marburg virus

Negative stain image of an isolate of Marburg virus, showing filamentous particles as well as the characteristic "Shepherd's Crook". Magnification approximately 100,000 times. Image courtesy of Russell Regnery, Ph.D., DVRD, NCID, CDC.

(PhysOrg.com) -- New research on the DNA of wallabies, rodents, a number of mammals and bats has found it is likely the ancestors of the Ebola and lesser-known Marburg viruses were in existence tens of millions of years ago, which is much earlier than previously thought.

The Ebola and Marburg viruses are known as "filoviruses," and result in life-threatening hemorrhaging in humans and other primates. Outbreaks occur in remote locations in Africa, and while rare they cause high fatality rates, and seem to appear out of nowhere. There are no effective treatments, and no vaccines.

It was previously thought that filoviruses were probably about 10,000 years old, with this figure based on the estimated mutation rate. The new research, by evolutionary biologist Derek Taylor and a team from the State University of New York in Buffalo, has used a different method to estimate their age.

The method is one used by paleovirologists, using remnants of virus genes found scattered within the genomes of animals. Viruses are either DNA or RNA based, and many insert their own genes into the DNA of host cells, and it had been thought that RNA-based viruses needed a gene for reverse transcriptase, an enzyme that converts their RNA to DNA in order to do this. Viruses with the gene are called retroviruses, and include the AIDS virus, HIV. Remnant viral genes from ancient retroviruses can be found in virtually every animal’s genome.

Filoviruses are RNA viruses that do not have the gene for reverse transcriptase. Taylor and co-worker Jeremy Bruenn discovered non-retrovirus genes in fungi last year, and dubbed them non-retroviral integrated RNA viruses (NIRVs). In January this year a group of researchers in Boston also reported finding RNA viruses (bornavirus) able to integrate their genes into mammalian DNA without the help of reverse transcriptase.

Taylor and his team have found “fossil” remnants of filovirus genes inside the genomes of a dozen species, but have not found any in primate species. They used genome databases to find the fossil remnants in mammals, and also confirmed their presence in a dead bat and a wallaby from a local zoo.

The team then compared the filovirus remnants in different species and found they were almost identical, which suggests the virus infected animals early in evolution, and the viral remnants were inherited by succeeding generations as the groups diverged to form separate species. For example, the house mouse and Norway rat have the same remnants in the same places in the same chromosomes, even though these diverged from each other over 12 million years ago.

Taylor said the odds of a gene inserting itself in the same place among billions of nucleotides are extremely unlikely, which means the filoviruses are much more ancient than previously thought, with the age at least in the tens of millions rather than tens of thousands.

There have been numerous studies looking for species that could harbor filoviruses without contracting the disease (known as reservoir species), and bats have been considered good candidates. The presence of NIRVs, which Taylor calls “battle scars of an infection,” could indicate the species with gene remnants could be reservoir candidates. Finding fossil remnants in New World marsupials could indicate the deaths in South America that sometimes occur after unexplained hemorrhagic fevers may be due to unidentified filoviruses.

The paper is published online in BMC Evolutionary Biology.

More information: Filoviruses are ancient and integrated into mammalian genomes, BMC Evolutionary Biology 2010, 10:193. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-10-193
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Promising news, but there will be those who claim the US military developed Ebola in the first place.

Post-exposure antibody treatment protects primates from Ebola, Marburg viruses
http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-03-p ... ebola.html
March 13th, 2012 in Medical research

Army scientists have demonstrated, for the first time, that antibody-based therapies can successfully protect monkeys from the deadly Ebola and Marburg viruses. In addition, the animals were fully protected even when treatment was administered two days post-infection, an accomplishment unmatched by any experimental therapy for these viruses to date. The work appears in this week's electronic edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The filoviruses, Ebola and Marburg, cause hemorrhagic fever with human case fatality rates as high as 90 percent. They are a global health concern and are considered potential biological threat agents. Currently there are no available vaccines or therapies approved for use in humans, making the development of such products a high priority.

In the article, John M. Dye, Andrew S. Herbert, William D. Pratt, and colleagues from the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) describe using antibody from monkeys that had previously survived challenge with lethal doses of filoviruses under controlled laboratory conditions. These survivors had developed high levels of antibody to ward off disease. Investigators collected blood serum from these animals, purified it and tested it for virus-neutralizing activity before commencing with their work.

In the first study, monkeys infected with Marburg virus were treated with antibody 15 to 30 minutes post-exposure, with additional treatments on days 4 and 8. The animals were completely protected, with no signs of disease or detectable levels of virus in their bloodstreams. Furthermore, all the monkeys generated an immune response to Marburg virus and survived subsequent re-challenge with the virus.

In the next set of studies, monkeys were infected with either Ebola or Marburg virus and treatments were delayed 48 hours, with additional treatments on days 4 and 8 post-exposure. The delayed treatments protected both sets of animals from challenge. In each group, two of the three animals had no clinical signs of illness following treatment, with the third developing mild symptoms followed by full recovery.

For nearly a decade, the filovirus research community has disregarded antibody-based therapies due to numerous failed attempts to protect monkeys against filovirus challenge, according to Dye.

"The use of antibodies as a treatment for infectious diseases is a well-established technology, with multiple products having received approval from the Food and Drug Administration," said Dye. "With these findings, we have provided proof-of concept that antibody-based therapies can indeed be used to effectively treat filovirus infections."

Dye said the USAMRIID team is hopeful that its work will open new avenues for development of filovirus therapies for human use.

More information: Postexposure antibody prophylaxis protects nonhuman primates from filovirus disease. John M. Dye, Andrew S. Herbert, Ana I. Kuehne, James F. Barth, Majidat A. Muhammad, Samantha E. Zak, Ramon A. Ortiz, Laura I. Prugar, and William D. Pratt: PNAS Early Edition. Published online at http://www.pnas.org/cgi/doi/10.1073/pnas.1200409109

Provided by US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Uganda's Yoweri Museveni warns of Ebola threat
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-19048998

Up to 90% of those who contract Ebola die from the virus

Related Stories

Progress towards Ebola vaccine
Mystery Ugandan illness kills 38
Scientists 'closer to Ebola drug'

Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni has urged people to avoid physical contact, after the deadly Ebola virus claimed one life in the capital, Kampala.

Fourteen people have now died since the outbreak began in western Uganda three weeks ago, he said in a broadcast.

There have been no confirmed cases of the infection spreading in Kampala.

Ebola, one of the most virulent diseases in the world, is spread by close personal contact and can kill up to 90% of those who become infected.

Mr Museveni said health officials were trying to trace everyone who had had contact with victims so that they could be quarantined.

People should avoid shaking hands, kissing or having sex to prevent the disease from spreading, he added.

Mr Museveni said relatives and friends should not bury anyone who is suspected to have died of Ebola.

"Instead call health workers because they know how to do it," he said.

Shocked
Mr Museveni said seven doctors and 13 health workers at Mulago hospital - the main referral hospital in Kampala - were in quarantine after "at least one or two cases" were taken there from Kibaale district, about 170km (100 miles) west of Kampala.

One victim - a health worker who had been transferred to the capital - later died.

"I wish you good luck, and may God rest the souls of those who died in eternal peace," Mr Museveni said as he ended his address to the nation.

The BBC's Ignatius Bahizi in Kampala says that some people have not yet heard about the latest outbreak of Ebola and are shocked when they find out.

At a bus station in the city centre, our correspondent saw officials warning passengers about the virus and telling them to avoid physical contact.

The first victim of the latest outbreak was a pregnant woman.

It then spread at a funeral, Mr Museveni said.

Uganda has seen three major Ebola outbreaks over the past 12 years.

The deadliest was in 2000 when 425 people were infected. More than half of them died.

There is no vaccine for the virus. Symptoms include sudden onset of fever, weakness, headache, vomiting and kidney problems.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Uganda's deadly Ebola outbreak under control, says MSF
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-19224159

Up to 90% of those who contract Ebola die from the virus

Related Stories

Progress towards Ebola vaccine
Mystery Ugandan illness kills 38
Scientists 'closer to Ebola drug'

The outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in Uganda appears to be under control, says the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF).

The last confirmed death from Ebola took place 11 days ago, MSF epidemiologist Dr Paul Roddy told the BBC.

But he warned that if a pocket of the virus was missed it could erupt once more.

He said there had been 19 confirmed and probable deaths during the outbreak.

"We are still receiving admissions of individuals that meet the clinical and epidemiological case definitions, but we have not had a laboratory-confirmed Ebola death in 11 days, and the last identified individual that we received with a positive laboratory confirmation was six days ago," said Dr Roddy.

Dr Roddy said that if there were no confirmed cases for 42 days the outbreak could be considered contained.

The outbreak started in the town of Kagadi in western Uganda.

There is no known cure for Ebola, but patients can be treated for their symptoms with antibiotics, drugs for pain relief and for other diseases like malaria, to strengthen their resistance.

Dr Roddy said a possible source of the virus was the bat population, which might have transmitted it to monkeys, which would have been killed as "bush-meat" by hunters.

Uganda has seen three major Ebola outbreaks over the past 12 years.

The deadliest was in 2000 when 425 people were infected. More than half of them died.

Symptoms include sudden onset of fever, weakness, headache, vomiting and kidney problems.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Mythopoeika said:
Seems to me that the scientists could work out why the disease keeps coming back, then do something about it.
If that involves culling or inoculating the entire monkey population, then so be it.
Or getting people to stop eating the monkeys.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Commercial ebola vaccine 'unlikely' say researchers
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-19112510
By Matt McGrath
Science reporter, BBC World Service

Ebola is one of the most feared viruses known to science

Related Stories

Ebola 'under control' in Uganda
Ebola confirmed in Uganda capital
Ebola health workers being traced Watch

Scientists researching the lethal ebola virus have told the BBC that a commercial vaccine to prevent the onset of infection may never be developed.

Two companies with leading vaccine candidates have had their funding from the Pentagon suspended in recent weeks.

An expert said it was now "unlikely" a prophylactic vaccine would ever be used to prevent outbreaks of the disease.

Ebola is often described as the most frightening disease on Earth.

The virus causes a severe haemorrhagic fever, where victims bleed both internally and externally.

The virus attacks white blood cells and blood vessels, causing a rash, red eyes, severe abdominal pain and vomiting.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

Overall we've made great progress but unfortunately we are still far away from commercial use. It is hard to say when a vaccine might be available, if ever”

Dr Heinz Feldmann
Rocky Mountain Laboratories
In recent weeks, an outbreak in western Uganda claimed the lives of at least sixteen people. There is no specific treatment and the virus can kill up to 90% of those who become infected.

Efforts to develop a vaccine have been funded in the main by the US Department of Defense and the National Institutes of Health. They have poured millions of dollars into scientific research because of concerns that the virus could be turned into a biological weapon.

As a result of this funding, several vaccine candidates have been developed and have shown themselves effective in animal trials.

Two companies, Sarepta and Tekmira have begun human safety trials of their vaccines.

But in recent days, both companies have been told by the Defense Department to temporarily stop work on their vaccines due to funding constraints. It is expected that a decision to either resume testing or completely terminate the contracts will be made by early September.

Scientists say their understanding of the nature of the virus has markedly improved over the past decade. But the chances of turning that knowledge into a vaccine are very dependent on money.

All about the money
Gene Olinger, a virologist at the US Army Research Institute of Infectious Disease at Fort Detrick in Maryland, told BBC News: "With the current funding, if it doesn't change, I would say there should be a vaccine in five to seven years. It could double or triple it if the funding goes away."

There is also a big concern over the lack of a large pharmaceutical company which might be willing to develop and market a vaccine for ebola. Since the disease was first discovered in 1976, slightly more than 2,200 people have been infected. And outbreaks have been almost impossible to predict.

Continue reading the main story
Where does Ebola come from?

Scientists at the World Health Organisation believe that fruit bats from the Pteropodidae family are the natural hosts of the ebola virus. Although non human primates are often the source of the infection they are not thought to be a reservoir but rather an accidental host.

The virus gets into humans through the consumption of infected animals or through contact with their blood, secretions and organs. It can pass from human to human via bodily secretions and fluids. Burial ceremonies in some parts of Africa where mourners have direct contact with the body of the deceased have played an important role in spreading the disease.

There are five different strains of ebola, three of which have caused outbreaks in Africa. The Reston species discovered in monkeys imported from the Philippines can infect humans but doesn't appear to have caused illness or death to date. Due to its high mortality rate, ebola is classified as a category A bio terrorism agent by the US Centers for Disease Control.

Larry Zeitlin is the president of Mapp Biopharmacueticals, a small company involved in the development of a therapy for ebola. He says that since the disease is sporadic and extremely deadly, it limits the numbers of people who are affected. But it also limits the commercial potential of any therapy.

"I think it's unlikely that a large pharmaceutical company would get involved," he explained.

"There isn't a huge customer base and big pharma is obviously interested in big profits. So these niche products which are important for biodefence are really driven by small companies."

This uncertainty over funding and the absence of interest from large pharmaceutical firms is leading some scientists to argue that a preventative vaccine might never see the light of day.

Heinz Feldmann is one of the world's leading experts on ebola. He oversees haemorrhagic fever research at Rocky Mountain Laboratories in the United States. He strikes a realistic note about the prospects for a vaccine.

"Overall we've made great progress but unfortunately we are still far away from commercial use. It is hard to say when a vaccine might be available, if ever," he said.

Practical steps
Others are even more sceptical on the basis of the science. Larry Zeitlin says that the challenges in developing a working therapy and worries over a mass innoculation programme will severely limit any prospective ebola vaccine.


Ebola virus needs careful handling in highly secure labs
"I think it's unlikely you'll see a vaccine that's used in millions and millions of people to prevent the disease, that might only come about if the nature of the disease changed, if it became something spread through airborne contact more like the flu," he said.

While progress has been slow in developing new therapies or vaccines, experts say that big steps have been taken in learning how to manage outbreaks and trace the contacts of those who come down with the disease.

Gene Olinger believes the recent outbreak in Uganda shows that developing new drugs is not the only approach that can be successful against ebola.

"I think they have the infrastructure now to do their own diagnostics, they can then call in help when they need it," he explained.

"The rapid response we saw in the Uganda outbreak indicates they have a greater control over their ability to respond. That makes a big difference. They've done a really good job."
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Outbreak of Ebola virus strikes DR Congo town of Isiro
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-19306437

The Ebola virus is fatal in 90% of human cases

Related Stories

Ebola confirmed in Uganda capital
Scientists 'closer to Ebola drug'
DR Congo profile

At least one person has died after an outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, officials say.

The death is one of two cases of the virus discovered in the town of Isiro.

Medical charity workers say they are attempting to find and isolate anyone who has been in contact with those infected by the virus.

Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) says the strain is not the same as the kind found recently in neighbouring Uganda.

At least 16 people died during an outbreak there last month.

The DR Congo outbreak occurred in Oriental province, which shares a border with Uganda.

"There is no link between both epidemics at this moment," Anja de Weggheleire, of MSF, told the BBC.

She added that there may be more cases that have yet to be detected.

"Not every person who develops the disease will develop clear symptoms that are recognised as Ebola. For the moment it seems that there are not that many cases but the exact number of cases is unknown."

Experts fear that the town's position as a transit point could make an outbreak more challenging to control.

The virus, which is transmitted to humans from both monkeys and birds, causes massive internal bleeding and has a very high mortality rate.

It is one of the most virulent diseases in the world and is spread by close personal contact.

There is no vaccine for the virus and symptoms of infection include a sudden onset of fever, weakness, headache, vomiting and kidney problems.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Getting worse. Cue: Don't Fear The Reaper.

WHO warning as Ebola virus kills 31 in DR Congo
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-19591204

Ebola is highly contagious, with patients in Uganda being quarantined after an outbreak last month

Related Stories

Little chance for ebola vaccine

An outbreak of the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo has now killed 31 people and could threaten major towns, the World Health Organization has warned.

An epidemic was officially declared on 17 August in the north-western Orientale Province.

WHO official Eugene Kabambi told Reuters that the situation was "very serious" and was "not under control".

Ebola is highly contagious and kills up to 90% of people infected.

There is no known treatment or vaccine for the disease, which is spread by close personal contact and causes massive internal bleeding.

The death toll from this latest outbreak, centred on the towns of Isoro and Viadana, has more than doubled over the course of a week to 31.

Up to five health workers are thought to be among the dead.

"The epidemic is not under control. On the contrary the situation is very, very serious," Mr Kabambi warned, speaking in DR Congo's capital Kinshasa.

"If nothing is done now, the disease will reach other places, and even major towns will be threatened," he said.

Last month an outbreak of a more deadly Ebola strain in neighbouring Uganda killed 16 people, but health workers say the two outbreaks do not appear to be related.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Orang-utans infected by mystery Ebola-like virus
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn2 ... virus.html
13:23 06 November 2012 by Debora MacKenzie

They are already the most endangered great apes. Now orang-utans may face an additional threat: Ebola virus, or something a lot like it. Bornean orang-utans have antibodies that recognise not just the Asian species of Ebola virus, but all four African Ebola viruses and a similar African virus called Marburg.

None of the African viruses has ever been seen outside Africa before. The discovery was discussed at a conference last week by the study's leader, Chairul Anwar Nidom of Airlangga University in Surabaya, Indonesia.

Orang-utans are the only Asian great apes: chimpanzees, bonobos and gorillas are African. Largely due to forest clearing for palm-oil plantations, only 40,000 orang-utans are thought to survive in the wild on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo, down from 60,000 a decade ago.

As part of a survey of wild mammals for H5N1 bird flu, which is endemic in Indonesian poultry, Nidom's team collected blood from 353 apparently healthy wild orang-utans in two reserves in eastern and central Borneo. They tested the samples for antibodies to flu and other infections to check the animals' disease history.

Sixty-five apes, from both locations, carried antibodies that bound to proteins from one of the African Ebola species, or from Marburg (PLoS ONE, doi.org/jpk).

Ebola kills African chimpanzees and lowland gorillas, and could pose a threat to both species. However, the orang-utans had clearly survived. Five others carried antibodies to the Asian species of Ebola called Reston, which has been found in macaque monkeys and pigs in the Philippines, not far from Borneo. Nidom notes that filoviruses like Ebola can be lethal in some species but not others – Reston Ebola kills cynomolgus macaques, but not rhesus macaques or humans. The African viruses might be similarly variable.

Or perhaps whatever the orang-utans caught wasn't quite African Ebola. "There could be filoviruses in nature that do not cause disease in primates," notes Thomas Geisbert, an Ebola expert at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. Antibodies to African Ebola might cross-react with those viruses, and give a positive test. But without an actual virus and its genetic sequence, says Geisbert, "I don't think you can say for sure that any virus associated with antibodies in these animals is the same as the African filoviruses".

"We only ever look for filoviruses when they've killed people," says Peter Walsh of the University of Cambridge, who tracks Ebola in chimps. "We don't know what others are out there, or what they do." For instance, another filovirus was discovered in Spanish bats last year. We do not know what, if anything, it does in primates.

Ayato Takada of Hokkaido University in Sapporo, Japan, a co-author of the Borneo paper, agrees that we need to detect the orang-utan virus itself before we will know more. The team plans to test domestic pigs, and wants to collect samples from bats.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Ebola outbreak in Uganda kills two
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-20338014

Up to 90% of those who contract Ebola die from the virus

A fresh outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus in Uganda has killed at least two people, the health minister has said.

Christine Ondoa said two members of the same family died over the weekend not far from the capital - and a third person was also suspected to have died in that area of the haemorrhagic fever.

An estimated 17 people died in western Uganda during an outbreak in July.

According to the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), there had been no cases since August.

'Avoid gatherings'
Dr Ondoa said that investigators had found conclusive evidence of Ebola in Luweero, about 60km (37 miles) from the capital, Kampala.

A third man had also died in the area late last month after showing symptoms of Ebola however no samples were taken from the victim and the case was not reported to health officials at the times, she said.

Five people who came into contact with those who died are being monitored. Two of them have been admitted to an isolation unit at Kampala's main Mulago hospital, the minister said.


There is no known cure for Ebola, but patients can be treated for their symptoms with antibiotics, drugs for pain relief and for other diseases such as malaria, to strengthen their resistance.

The virus causes death in 90% of human cases.

Dr Ondoa said the disease is "very infectious" and kills "in a short time", but is "easily" preventable.

Among precautionary measures she urged people to take were:

Avoid public gatherings, including funerals, in affected districts
Bury victims immediately under the supervision of health officials
Avoid direct contact with body fluids of Ebola patients by using gloves and masks

Disinfect the bedding and clothing of an infected person and
Avoid eating dead animals, especially monkeys.
Uganda has seen several major Ebola outbreaks over the past 12 years.

The deadliest was in 2000 when 425 people were infected. More than half of them died.

The BBC's Catherine Byaruhanga in Kampala says many Ugandans are wondering why the country is so prone to Ebola outbreaks.

The government has said it is because its systems are getting better at detecting them.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
More good news. :(

Growing concerns over 'in the air' transmission of Ebola
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-20341423
By Matt McGrath
Science reporter, BBC World Service

The infection is thought to get into humans through close contact with bodily fluids

Related Stories

Fresh Ebola outbreak in Uganda
Little chance for ebola vaccine

Canadian scientists have shown that the deadliest form of the ebola virus could be transmitted by air between species.

In experiments, they demonstrated that the virus was transmitted from pigs to monkeys without any direct contact between them.

The researchers say they believe that limited airborne transmission might be contributing to the spread of the disease in some parts of Africa.

They are concerned that pigs might be a natural host for the lethal infection.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

What we suspect is happening is large droplets - they can stay in the air, but not long, they don't go far. But they can be absorbed in the airway”

Dr Gary Kobinger
Public Health Agency of Canada
Ebola viruses cause fatal haemorrhagic fevers in humans and many other species of non human primates.

Details of the research were published in the journal Scientific Reports.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the infection gets into humans through close contact with the blood, secretions, organs and other bodily fluids from a number of species including chimpanzees, gorillas and forest antelope.

The fruit bat has long been considered the natural reservoir of the infection. But a growing body of experimental evidence suggests that pigs, both wild and domestic, could be a hidden source of Ebola Zaire - the most deadly form of the virus.

Now, researchers from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the country's Public Health Agency have shown that pigs infected with this form of Ebola can pass the disease on to macaques without any direct contact between the species.

In their experiments, the pigs carrying the virus were housed in pens with the monkeys in close proximity but separated by a wire barrier. After eight days, some of the macaques were showing clinical signs typical of ebola and were euthanised.

One possibility is that the monkeys became infected by inhaling large aerosol droplets produced from the respiratory tracts of the pigs.


Pigs could act as a host and amplify the Ebola virus
One of the scientists involved is Dr Gary Kobinger from the National Microbiology Laboratory at the Public Health Agency of Canada. He told BBC News this was the most likely route of the infection.

"What we suspect is happening is large droplets - they can stay in the air, but not long, they don't go far," he explained.

"But they can be absorbed in the airway and this is how the infection starts, and this is what we think, because we saw a lot of evidence in the lungs of the non-human primates that the virus got in that way."

The scientists say that their findings could explain why some pig farmers in the Philippines had antibodies in their system for the presence of a different version of the infection called Ebola Reston. The farmers had not been involved in slaughtering the pigs and had no known contact with contaminated tissues.

Dr Kobinger stresses that the transmission in the air is not similar to influenza or other infections. He points to the experience of most human outbreaks in Africa.

"The reality is that they are contained and they remain local, if it was really an airborne virus like influenza is it would spread all over the place, and that's not happening."

Hidden host
The authors believe that more work needs to be done to clarify the role of wild and domestic pigs in spreading the virus. There have been anecdotal accounts of pigs dying at the start of human outbreaks. Dr Kobinger believes that if pigs do play a part, it could help contain the virus.

"If they do play a role in human outbreaks it would be a very easy point to intervene" he said. "It would be easier to vaccinate pigs against Ebola than humans."


Workers prepare to disinfect during a recent Ebola outbreak in Uganda
Other experts in the field were concerned about the idea that Ebola was susceptible to being transmitted by air even if the distance the virus could travel was limited. Dr Larry Zeitlin is the president of Mapp Biopharmaceuticals.

"It's an impressive study that not only raises questions about the reservoir of Ebola in the wild, but more importantly elevates concerns about ebola as a public health threat," he told BBC News. "The thought of airborne transmission is pretty frightening."

At present, an outbreak of ebola in Uganda has killed at least two people near the capital Kampala. Last month, Uganda declared itself Ebola-free after an earlier outbreak of the disease killed at least sixteen people in the west of the country.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Guinea deaths: Ebola blamed for deadly fever outbreak
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26701733

Library picture of health workers dressed in special head-to-toe Ebola suits (2005)

Ebola was first identified in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1976

The Ebola virus has been identified as the cause of an outbreak of haemorrhagic fever now believed to have killed nearly 60 people in southern Guinea, government officials say.

Scores of cases have been recorded since the outbreak began early last month.

There is no known cure or vaccine for the highly contagious Ebola virus.

It is spread by close personal contact with people who are infected and kills between 25% and 90% of victims.

Symptoms include internal and external bleeding, diarrhoea and vomiting.

Outbreaks of Ebola occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests, the World Health Organization says.

Analysts suggest it has never been recorded in Guinea before.

Recent years have seen outbreaks in Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo.

'Overwhelmed'
"We got the first results from Lyon yesterday (Friday) which informed us of the presence of the Ebola virus as the cause of this outbreak," Guinean health ministry official Sakoba Keita told AFP.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

The more quickly we can contain this the fewer cases we'll have, then the smaller the scale of the epidemic. That's the idea of going in as strong as we can early on”

Dr Armand Sprecher
MSF in Guinea
"The Ebola fever epidemic raging in southern Guinea since 9 February has left at least 59 dead out of 80 cases identified by our services on the ground."

"We are overwhelmed in the field, we are fighting against this epidemic with all the means we have at our disposal with the help of our partners but it is difficult."

Medical aid charity Medecins sans Frontieres said on Saturday it would strengthen its team in Guinea and fly some 33 tonnes of drugs and isolation equipment in from Belgium and France.

Dr Armand Sprecher, an emergency physician and epidemiologist working with MSF in Guinea, told the BBC that doctors had to identify all patients with the disease and monitor anyone they had been in contact with during their illness.

The latest outbreak could be brought under control if people acted quickly, he said.

"Based on our history with these sorts of outbreaks it will happen. Ideally, sooner rather than later," said Dr Sprecher.

"The more quickly we can contain this the fewer cases we'll have, then the smaller the scale of the epidemic. That's the idea of going in as strong as we can early on."
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Virus in Guinea capital Conakry not Ebola
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26717490

File photo of officials from the World Health Organization in protective clothing preparing to enter Kagadi Hospital in Kibale District, about 200 kilometres from Kampala, where an outbreak of Ebola virus started (28 July 2012)

There is no known cure or vaccine for Ebola

Tests on suspected cases of deadly Ebola virus in Guinea's capital Conakry are negative, health officials say.

On Sunday, UN officials said that the virus had spread to the capital, a port city of up to two million, from remote forests in the south, where some 59 people have died.

But a World Health Organization (WHO) spokesman told the BBC the Conakry tests had come back negative.

Ebola is spread by close contact and kills between 25% and 90% of victims.

There is no known cure or vaccine.

Symptoms include internal and external bleeding, diarrhoea and vomiting.

After two people died from a haemorrhagic fever in Conakry, samples were sent to the Pasteur Institute in neighbouring Senegal for testing.

WHO spokesman Collins Boakye-Agyemang told the BBC these had shown that the victims had not been infected with Ebola. It is not clear what killed them.

The outbreak is said to be the first time Ebola has hit Guinea.

Recent cases have been thousands of miles away, in Uganda and Democratic Republic of Congo.

Outbreaks of Ebola occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests, the World Health Organization says.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Hmmm, the previous report said the vrus in Guinea was not Ebola.

Possible Ebola case reported in Canada
http://www.rte.ie/news/2014/0324/604362-ebola-canada/
Monday 24 March 2014 23.47

Person is displaying symptoms of Ebola virus

A person returning to Canada from western Africa has been hospitalised after displaying symptoms consistent with those of the Ebola virus that has killed 59 people in Guinea.

A health official said the person is critically ill.

"All we know at this point is that we have a person who is critically ill who traveled from a country where these diseases occur," Denise Werker, joint director of health in Saskatchewan province in western Canada, told reporters.

She said the casualty had been in Liberia and had developed the symptoms after landing in Canada.

He or she would not have been contagious when travelling and was now in isolation, pending test results.

Aid workers and health officials in Guinea are battling to contain west Africa's first outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus as neighbouring Liberia reported its first suspected victims.

The Liberian cases, if confirmed, would mark the first spread of the highly contagious pathogen into another country.

Ms Werker said the risk of transmission was low as the disease, one of the world's most virulent, is transmitted to humans from wild animals and between humans by direct contact with blood, feces or sweat, or by sexual contact and the unprotected handling of contaminated corpses.
Edit to fix typoi.
 

EnolaGaia

I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Joined
Jul 19, 2004
Messages
16,353
Reaction score
21,330
Points
309
Location
Out of Bounds
Canada Rules out Suspected Case of Ebola
TORONTO March 25, 2014 (AP)

Canadian officials investigating a man suspected of having contracted Ebola during a visit to West Africa say it has been determined he does not have the virus.

Cailin Rodgers, a spokeswoman for Canada's health minister, said Tuesday lab testing confirmed the individual hospitalized with symptoms of a hemorrhagic fever does not have Ebola.

She says there are no confirmed cases of Ebola in Canada.

The man remains seriously ill and is being kept in isolation in a Saskatchewan hospital.

SOURCE: http://abcnews.go.com/International/wir ... s-23046001
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Guinea Ebola outbreak: Bat-eating banned to curb virus
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26735118

A fruit bat is pictured in 2010 at the Amneville zoo in France.

Fruit bats are believed to be a major carrier of the Ebola virus but do not show symptoms

Guinea has banned the sale and consumption of bats to prevent the spread of the deadly Ebola virus, its health minister has said.

Bats, a local delicacy, appeared to be the "main agents" for the Ebola outbreak in the south, Rene Lamah said.

Sixty-two people have now been killed by the virus in Guinea, with suspected cases reported in neighbouring Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Ebola is spread by close contact. There is no known cure or vaccine.

It kills between 25% and 90% of victims, depending on the strain of the virus, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

This is the first time such a national health threat has come to our borders”

Brima Kargbo
Sierra Leone health official
Symptoms include internal and external bleeding, diarrhoea and vomiting.

'Quarantine sites'
It is the first time Ebola has struck Guinea, with recent outbreaks thousands of miles away, in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Mr Lamah announced the ban on the sale and consumption of bats during a tour of Forest Region, the epicentre of the epidemic, reports the BBC's Alhassan Sillah from the capital, Conakry.

People who eat the animals often boil them into a sort of spicy pepper soup, our correspondent says. The soup is sold in village stores where people gather to drink alcohol.

Other ways of preparing the bats to eat include drying them over a fire.

File photo of officials from the World Health Organization in protective clothing preparing to enter Kagadi Hospital in Kibale District, about 200 kilometres from Kampala, where an outbreak of Ebola virus started (28 July 2012)
There is no known cure or vaccine for Ebola
Medical supplies being loaded in Guinea's capital, Conakry (24 March 2014)
Aid agencies and the government are taking medical supplies to the affected areas in Guinea
Certain species of bat found in West and Central Africa are thought to be the natural reservoir of Ebola, although they do not show any symptoms.

Health officials reported one more death on Tuesday, bringing the number of people killed by Ebola to 62, our correspondent adds.

map
The charity Medecins Sans Frontieres has set up two quarantine sites in southern Guinea to try to contain the outbreak, the Associated Press news agency reports.

Health authorities are receiving help from the WHO while messages are being broadcast on national television to reassure people.

Sierra Leone's health ministry said it was investigating two suspected cases of Ebola.

"We still do not have any confirmed cases of Ebola in the country," its chief medical officer Brima Kargbo told AFP.

Continue reading the main story
Ebola virus disease

Causes severe outbreaks of viral haemorrhagic fever (VHF)
Fatality rate of up to 90%
Occurs mostly in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests
Transmitted to people from wild animals and spreads through human-to-human contact
Fruit bats are thought to carry the Ebola virus
No treatment or vaccine
Source: WHO

"What we do have are suspected cases, which our health teams are investigating and taking blood samples from people who had come in contact with those suspected to have the virus," he added.

Mr Kargbo said one suspected case involved a 14-year-old boy buried in a Sierra Leonean village after he apparently died across the border in Guinea two weeks ago, AFP reports.

The other patient was still alive in the northern border district of Kambia, he added.

Five people are reported to have died in Liberia after crossing from southern Guinea for treatment, Liberia's Health Minister Walter Gwenigale told journalists on Monday.

However, it is not clear whether they had Ebola.

Outbreaks of Ebola occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests, the World Health Organization says.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
I misunderstood the previous post about Guinea: the cases in the Capital are an unknown virus. There are Ebola cases in the rest of the country.
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Now its in the Capital.

Ebola: Guinea outbreak reaches capital Conakry
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26774343

People walk in front of the Ignace Deen hospital in Conakry on 27 March

With two million people and limited healthcare resources in the city, the virus' appearance is worrying

Guinea's government has for the first time confirmed cases of the deadly Ebola virus in the capital Conakry.

Until now, the 66 confirmed deaths have only been in rural areas, although there have been suspected cases, which have since proved negative, in the capital.

There have also been suspected cases in neighbouring West African states Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Ebola is spread by close contact and kills between 25% and 90% of victims.

map
Earlier this week, the health ministry banned the sale and consumption of bats, in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus. Fruit bats, which are a delicacy in the worst affected south-eastern region, are thought to be carriers of the disease.

Health Minister Remy Lamah said the virus appeared to have been transmitted by an man who showed symptoms of haemorrhagic fever after visiting Dinguiraye in central Guinea, far from the identified outbreaks of Ebola in the remote south-east.

Four of the man's brothers, who attended his funeral in the central town of Dabola, started to show the same symptoms and were tested for Ebola on their return to Conakry.

The four have been placed in an isolation ward and the dead man's family have also been quarantined, the minister said.

The spread of the disease to Conakry, a city of some two million people, marks an escalation in the Ebola outbreak in Guinea - one of the poorest nations on earth, despite rich deposits of bauxite and iron ore.

Workers from Doctors Without Borders unload emergency medical supplies from the back of a lorry, to deal with the country's Ebola outbreak
Emergency medical supplies have been sent to the country to help it deal with the outbreak
A warehouse of the Swiss branch of the NGO Medecins sans Frontieres in Conakry showing protection material stored on shelves
There is no cure or vaccine for the virus, but improved hygiene is thought to help control its spread
Discovered in 1976 after an outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, then Zaire, Ebola causes a severe haemorrhagic fever where victims suffer vomiting, diarrhoea and both internal and external bleeding.

Continue reading the main story

Start Quote

If this virus spread between people more easily, it would probably be more deadly than the black plague”

Ben Neuman
Virologist, University of Reading
Scientists have yet to develop an effective drug or vaccine to fight it.

Part of the problem is that the deadly virus is rare and its victims are often poor people living in rural areas of Africa without well-functioning health systems. But there is also little incentive for major pharmaceutical companies to invest in medical solutions when there is little chance of a return, analysts say.

However, many health officials believe the virus could be better controlled with good basic hygiene and the eradication of dangerous bush meat consumption. The US government also funds some research, partly out of concern the virus could be used for bioterrorism.

"Ebola virus is one of the deadliest killers known," said Ben Neuman, a virologist at Britain's University of Reading.

"If this virus spread between people more easily, it would probably be more deadly than the black plague. Fortunately, up to this point, it has not," he added.

Outbreaks of Ebola occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests, the World Health Organization says.

File photo of officials from the World Health Organization in protective clothing preparing to enter Kagadi Hospital in Kibale District, about 200 kilometres from Kampala, where an outbreak of Ebola virus started (28 July 2012)

There is no known cure for Ebola, which in 2012 broke out in Uganda
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
We're doomed.

Ebola outbreak 'unprecedented' in Guinea - MSF

An aid organisation has said the Ebola outbreak suspected of killing at least 78 people in Guinea is an "unprecedented epidemic."

An official with Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) said the spread of the fatal disease was of "a magnitude never before seen."
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26825869
 

ramonmercado

CyberPunk
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
50,048
Reaction score
23,414
Points
284
Location
Eblana
Ebola outbreak in Guinea 'limited geographically' - WHO
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-26838885

Health specialists work in an isolation ward for patients in southern Guinea. Photo: 1 April 2014

Guinea has so far found 127 suspected cases of Ebola since January

The deadly Ebola outbreak in Guinea, West Africa, remains in a "limited geographic area", the World Health Organization has said.

WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl said it was neither an epidemic, nor unprecedented.

But medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) has said its spread makes it very difficult to control.

The WHO says 83 people in Guinea have died in suspected cases of Ebola, which is spread by close contact and kills between 25% and 90% of its victims.

It has now spread to neighbouring Liberia, as well as Guinea's capital, Conakry, which has a population of two million people.

Continue reading the main story
Analysis

Alhassan Sillah
BBC, Conakry, Guinea
The traditional handshake is no longer a part of salutations in Guinea as people are really terrified of being infected with Ebola. "I no longer go out of the house just so that I do not have to shake people's hands," retired civil servant Mohamed Barry says.

The disease originated in the southern Forest Region where bats, a local delicacy, are thought be carriers of the virus. Their sale and consumption has been banned.

The situation is most worrying in Conakry, where about two million people live. All homes now have bowls or buckets filled with disinfectant at their entrance for both inhabitants and visitors to wash their hands.

The outbreak is also affecting business. Senegal has closed its land borders, leaving many stranded. "Our goods are about to perish," one businessman said.

Funeral corteges, too, are getting smaller because of fear of infection. "I don't go to any funeral now whether it is an Ebola-related death or not, or whether it is my relation that has died," teacher Mariam Mansare says.

BBC correspondents witness effects
Liberia has recorded a total of seven suspected and confirmed cases, including four deaths.

Outbreaks of Ebola occur primarily in remote villages in Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests, the WHO says.

'Unprecedented'
"We need to be very careful about how we characterise something which is up to now an outbreak with sporadic cases," Mr Hartl told reporters in Geneva, Switzerland.

The WHO says the epidemiology of this outbreak is the same as previous outbreaks and remains localised, the BBC's Imogen Foulkes reports from Geneva.

The organisation adds that cases in Conakry and Liberia can be traced to the south-east of Guinea where the outbreak began.

On Monday, MSF described the outbreak as "unprecedented".

"We are facing an epidemic of a magnitude never before seen in terms of the distribution of cases," said Mariano Lugli, a co-ordinator in Guinea for the medical charity.

"This geographical spread is worrisome because it will greatly complicate the tasks of the organisations working to control the epidemic."

The outbreak of Ebola had centred around Guinea's remote south-eastern region of Nzerekore but it took the authorities six weeks to identify the disease.

Map of West Africa
Guinea has so far confirmed 122 cases of Ebola since January.

Liberia's Health Minister, Walter Gwenigale, on Monday warned people to stop having sex because the virus was spread via bodily fluids.

This was in addition to existing advice to stop shaking hands and kissing.

Sierra Leone has also reported five suspected cases, none of which have yet been confirmed, while Senegal, which also borders Guinea, has closed its land border.

Saudi Arabia suspended visas for Muslim pilgrims from Guinea and Liberia on Tuesday, in a sign of the growing unease about the outbreak

The "preventive" measure came at the request of the Saudi health ministry "due to the danger of the disease and its highly contagious" nature, state news agency SPA reported.

The tropical virus leads to haemorrhagic fever, causing muscle pain, weakness, vomiting, diarrhoea and, in severe cases, organ failure and unstoppable bleeding.
 
Top