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African Monkeys Caught Eating Bats For the First Time

Researchers working in Africa are the first to observe monkeys preying on bats. The unusual behavior, which may have something to do with loss of habitat, could explain how dangerous diseases such as Ebola spread among species—and eventually to humans.

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World Bank Launches $500 Million Insurance Fund to Fight Pandemics

           

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim speaks during a panel discussion at the Anti-Corruption Summit in London, Thursday, May 12, 2016.  REUTERS/FRANK AUGSTEIN/POOL

reuters.com - by David Lawder - May 20, 2016

The World Bank on Saturday said it was launching a $500 million, fast-disbursing insurance fund to combat deadly pandemics in poor countries, creating the world's first insurance market for pandemic risk. . . . 

. . . In the event of a pandemic outbreak, the facility will release funds quickly to affected poor countries and qualified international first-responder agencies. . . . 

. . . The so-called Pandemic Emergency Financing Facility will initially provide up to $500 million that can be disbursed quickly to fight a pandemic, with funds released once parametric triggers are met, based on the size, severity and spread of an outbreak.

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Beyond Contact Tracing: Community-Based Early Detection for Ebola Response

Introduction: The 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa raised many questions about the control of infectious disease in an increasingly connected global society. Limited availability of contact information made contact tracing diffcult or impractical in combating the outbreak. 

Methods: We consider the development of multi-scale public health strategies that act on individual and community levels. We simulate policies for community-level response aimed at early screening all members of a community, as well as travel restrictions to prevent inter-community transmission. 

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Late Ebola Virus Relapse Causing Meningoencephalitis: a Case Report

thelancet.com - May 18, 2016 - DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30386-5

Interpretation

Our report shows that previously unanticipated, late, severe relapses of Ebola virus can occur, in this case in the CNS. This finding fundamentally redefines what is known about the natural history of Ebola virus infection. Vigilance should be maintained in the thousands of Ebola survivors for cases of relapsed infection. The potential for these cases to initiate new transmission chains is a serious public health concern.

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Casual healthcare contact with Ebola survivors poses low risk

Non-invasive contact with Ebola survivors 6 weeks after the virus has been cleared poses little risk for healthcare workers, though contact with semen, ocular humor, and cerebrospinal fluid requires Ebola-appropriate precautions, according to a study yesterday in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

A cross-sectional cohort study evaluated 555 specimens from 112 Ebola survivors without fever seeking follow-up care at a clinic in Freetown, Sierra Leone, from Apr 2 to Jun 16, 2015. Almost one third of survivors (34, or 30%) were under the age of 16, and 50 (40%) were male.

Samples were obtained from the armpit (103 specimens), blood (93), conjunctiva (92), forehead (54), mouth (105), rectum (17), semen (1), urine (69), and vagina (21). The median time from Ebola treatment unit discharge to specimen collection was 142 days.

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Sexual transmission involved in tail end of Ebola epidemic

Some of the final cases of Ebola in Sierra Leone were transmitted via unconventional routes, such as semen and breastmilk, according to the largest analysis to date of the tail-end of the epidemic.


An international team of researchers has produced a detailed picture of the latter stages of the outbreak in Sierra Leone, using real-time sequencing of Ebola virus genomes carried out in a temporary laboratory in the country.

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Deadly virus detected in sperm of survivors months after recovery

The deadly virus is passed on through contact with body fluids and 

The epidemic has now been declared over but researchers have monitored 450 survivors of both sexes for a year, testing tears, saliva, faeces, vaginal fluids and semen every three months thereafter.

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I knew death was imminent': nurse Pauline Cafferkey on surviving Ebola

Pauline Cafferkey opens her bathroom cabinet and reaches for a tub of tablets.

“So this is where I keep medications,” she explains in a quiet, matter-of-fact voice, before taking me through the roster of drugs she takes daily, to keep epileptic seizures, spinal swelling, nerve pain and generalised body aches at bay.

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WHO Ebola Situation Report

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