Medicine

Two vaccines show significant promise in fight against Ebola virus

Two vaccines show significant promise in fight against Ebola virus

On the other hand, approximately 53% of the patients on Remdesivir and almost 49% of the patients on ZMapp died.

In the trial, significantly fewer people died among those given the Regeneron drug or the NIH's, about 30 per cent, compared with those who received another treatment.

The plan now by health officials is to use the medication to treat all Ebola patients in DR Congo.

These rates were far enough below those of the two other treatments - including ZMapp, first tested in the 2014 West Africa outbreak - that scientists made a decision to end the trial early.

The two most effective drugs have been kept, and the two others (ZMapp and Remdesivir) have been dropped from the trial as they weren't showing strong enough signs of treatment.

Anthony Fauci, NIAID's director, also said the results were "very good news" for the fight against Ebola.

Two of four Ebola treatment drugs have been determined "more effective" than the others and will be the only ones used on patients going forward, the World Health Organisation announced on Monday.

The Pamoja Tulinde Maisha (PALM [together save lives]) study is a randomized, controlled trial of four investigational agents (ZMapp, remdesivir, mAb114 and REGN-EB3) for the treatment of patients with Ebola virus disease.

World Health Organization says the current outbreak is the second-deadliest and has killed more than 1,800 people in the DRC over the past year.

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The NIH, Democratic Republic of Congo health authorities and the World Health Organization hailed the 'extraordinary team of individuals who have worked under extremely hard conditions to carry out this study, ' as well as the patients and their families.

He added, "Now you can get the two best antibodies quickly to the people who need them".

The trial, conducted by a global research group coordinated by the World Health Group (WHO), started a year ago. What's more, when patients were admitted to the hospital with a low viral load and offered the drugs shortly after contracting the disease, their survival chances jumped to 94 percent (REGN-EB3) and 89 percent (mAb114).

Patients were enrolled at four Ebola Treatment Centers (ETCs) in Beni, Katwa, Butembo and Mangina.

Wendy Holman, CEO and co-founder of Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, said: "I am very proud of what the Ridgeback team has accomplished in less than a year and we will continue to concentrate on ensuring that mAb114 is available to respond to the current and any future outbreaks".

One issue researchers will have to analyze: Occasionally people who receive the Ebola vaccine still become sick, including some in the treatment study, which raises the question of whether their earlier protection inflated the drugs' survival numbers.

Considering the success of the study, Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust global health charity, stated the therapies would "undoubtedly save lives".

Lindmeier said that people are encouraged to keep an eye on their loved ones and seek care immediately if probable symptoms arise.