27 November

Human trials have started to test the cure for the Ebola virus.

Although the trial has not shown a mass success, it has shown some promising results amongst the twenty volunteers.

Scientists discovered the vaccine from a chimpanzee cold virus. The BBC noted that this vaccine ‘has been genetically engineered to carry a non-infectious Ebola protein on its surface.’[1]

The trial does suggest that it would be safe to use as no volunteer suffered from dangerous, or severe side effects. Most importantly all volunteers produced antibodies, those on a high dose of the vaccine produced more. These are essential in the protection of the immune system to tackle the virus.

The trials are being held over Europe and phase two will see to trailing the vaccine in West Africa, which will define if the vaccine truly works. Health workers in West Africa will have first premise to this vaccine.

The BBC received a statement from Dr Fauci, who said the long-term aim was to produce a vaccine which would protect against future outbreaks.[2]

However, due to the pressing matter of the epidemic, the drugs produced are being put ahead at fast speed. Therefore if any side effects do occur, the financial repercussions will be a problem. Although, do we question this at this point, since the disease has been a problem since the late 90’s.

Africa has suffered with the virus for many of years, and if the outbreak has now caused some serious reflection on the research of finding some clinical help, then surely these trials can only be viewed as a positive investment.

However it is still unclear how long the protection would last, should it be successful.

But, we would still like to know your thoughts on this. Does health triumph spending of tests? And, surely this vaccine should be able to be processed globally? Including, all of Africa who has struggled with the virus for far too long.

[1] BBC News, (2014). Ebola vaccine trial ‘promising’. Available at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-30217573 [Accessed 27 Nov. 2014]

[2] Ibid

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