An Ebola cure may still be a way off, but a new study makes the case that ZMapp could be the drug we’re looking for, if more of it could be produced.
The study, reported in Friday’s New York Times, stated that out of 21 monkeys, 18 were given ZMapp, and from that number, all that had been exposed to a lethal dose of Ebola survived when given the drug. Furthermore, the monkeys’ symptoms, which included excessive bleeding, rashes and signs of liver toxicity, all disappeared; meanwhile, the three monkeys that did not receive ZMapp died.
More from the New York Times report:
“Experts said these were the best monkey results reported to date for any Ebola drug, raising hopes that the drug will work in people.
“‘I think it strongly supports that concept,’ Gary P. Kobinger, the senior author of the study, said in a telephone news conference Friday, shortly before the paper was published by the journal Nature. Still, Dr. Kobinger, a researcher for the Public Health Agency of Canada, cautioned that effectiveness in monkeys was not ‘proof’ that a drug would work in people.
“Kartik Chandran, an expert on Ebola who was not involved in the study, said the results were impressive.”
“To actually be able to reverse all those symptoms and signs and bring them back to baseline, I think that is pretty astounding,” said Dr. Chandran, an associate professor of microbiology and immunology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. “If you are going to give somebody something during this outbreak, this would be it.”
Of course, the major issue keeping this from being the Ebola cure we’ve all been waiting for is the available supply and the likelihood of producing enough to stave off a full-scale Ebola outbreak.
The ZMapp supply has run out, and it was created and developed by a mere nine-person firm out of San Diego. It could possibly take months to manufacture more of the drug, and at the rate that Ebola is expanding in the affected regions, those are months that no one can afford to wait.
For more on ZMapp as a potential Ebola cure, make sure you check out the full report from the Times. Definitely worth a read for peace of mind during these scary times.
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