You are here

Research

What ‘100 Percent Effective’ Means for That Ebola Vaccine

Analysis
WIRED.COM by Katie M. Palmer                                                            Aug. 4, 2015

Last week, the medical journal the Lancet published preliminary results on the efficacy of an Ebola vaccine in Guinea, and everybody got really excited—especially about one particular figure. The vaccine, the results suggested, was 100 percent effective at protecting against Ebola, a thrilling prospect in the face of an epidemic that has killed more than 11,000 people. ...

But that number probably means less than you think it does. It’s based on incomplete data, so it doesn’t have the statistical clout it should. And it never will. Based on the vaccine’s early success, the trial’s runners decided that all participants in the study should get it immediately after exposure. That’s a perfectly reasonable, humane reaction, but it also means that the researchers will never be able to collect better data on the vaccine’s efficacy, which is what regulators look for when they’re deciding to approve a drug. In other words, the vaccine’s early success could make it harder for people to get it down the line.

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

The Individualised versus the Public Health Approach to Treating Ebola

PLOS/Medicine   by  Tom H. Boyles                            July 28, 2015

The mortality rate for patients with Ebola virus disease (EVD) in West Africa is approximately 65% [1]. There are no published figures for high-resource settings, but media sources and individual case reports suggest it is much lower and approaches 0% for those who receive this level of care from the beginning of their illness.

In their article “Ebola Viral Disease: Experience and Decision Making for the First Cases outside of Africa,” David Stephens and colleagues give insight into the care that can be provided when available resources are not the limiting factor [2]. They describe the decision to open the Serious Communicable Diseases Unit (SCDU) of Emory University Hospital (EUH) when two United States patients contracted EVD while working in West Africa. Using a large specialist team, they provided high-quality care in a safe working environment and disseminated their knowledge and experience widely.....

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Addressing therapeutic options for Ebola virus infection in current or future outbreaks

AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR MICROBIOLOGY  by Azizul Haque and others                                July  27, 2015

 Ebola virus can cause severe hemorrhagic disease with high fatality rates. Currently, no specific therapeutic or vaccine has been approved for treatment and prevention of Ebola infection of humans. Although the number of Ebola cases has fallen in the last few weeks, multiple outbreaks of Ebola virus infection and the likelihood of future exposure highlight the need for development and rapid evaluation of pre- and post-exposure treatments.

In this manuscript we briefly review the existing and future options for anti-Ebola therapy, based on the data coming from rare clinical reports, studies on animals and results from in vitro models....

Read complete report

http://aac.asm.org/content/early/2015/07/21/AAC.01105-15.short?rss=1

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Ebola study notes afebrile patients, calls into question WHO criteria

CENTER FOR DISEASE RESEARCH AND POLICY        July 24, 2015

(Also scroll down for: Ebola case definition quandary; Public health worker Ebola unease)

Researchers found that the World Health Organization (WHO) Ebola case definition has a specificity of only 31.5%, and they noted that 9% of Ebola patients reported neither a fever nor any Ebola risk exposure, calling into question WHO norms, according to a large study yesterday in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

Researchers from Britain and Sierra Leone analyzed data on 850 suspected and 724 lab-confirmed Ebola patients who presented to the holding unit of Connaught Hospital in Freetown from May 29 to Dec 8, 2014. Fever or history of fever (n=599, 83%), intense fatigue or weakness (495, 68%), vomiting or nausea (365, 50%), and diarrhea (294, 41%) were the most common presenting symptoms in suspected cases.

Based on data from these patients, the investigators found the sensitivity of the WHO case definition to be 79.7%, which means about 20% of true Ebola cases would be missed (false-negatives). They found the specificity of the case definition to be 31.5%, which means 68.5% of patients who would be selected for admission would not actually have Ebola virus disease (false-positives).

Read complete story.

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Experimental Ebola drug shelved; study explores virus clearance

CENTER FOR INFECTIOUS DISEASE POLICY AND RESEARCH by Lisa Schnirring     July 20, 2015

Tekmira Pharmaceuticals  announced that it has suspended development of TKM-Ebola, a drug cocktail that showed disappointing human trial results in West Africa, as a convalescent plasma trial at a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) facility in Guinea proceeded with no ill effects in patients so far...

In suspending TKM-Ebola development, the company said that a joint reevaluation of its contract with the US Department of Defense is under way.

In another development, MSF said a convalescent serum trial at its facility in Nongo, Guinea, has enrolled 101 people over the last few months, with no ill effects reported so far, according to a Jul 17 update on the outbreak. Patients at the Nongo treatment unit have the option to receive plasma donated by Ebola survivors....

Meanwhile, detailed testing at a Swiss hospital on a 43-year-old doctor infected with Ebola in Sierra Leone found that viral decay occurred in two phases, once starting 72 hours after symptom onset before any antiviral interventions, with acceleration in viral load decay after ZMAb infusion and oral favipiravir treatments began..

Read complete article.

Country / Region Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

The Really Big One

The next full-margin rupture of the Cascadia subduction zone will spell the worst natural disaster in the history of the continent. Credit Illustration by Christoph Niemann; Map by Ziggymaj / GettyImage: The next full-margin rupture of the Cascadia subduction zone will spell the worst natural disaster in the history of the continent. Credit Illustration by Christoph Niemann; Map by Ziggymaj / Getty

newyorker.com - July 20th, 2015 - Kathryn Schulz

When the 2011 earthquake and tsunami struck Tohoku, Japan, Chris Goldfinger was two hundred miles away, in the city of Kashiwa, at an international meeting on seismology. As the shaking started, everyone in the room began to laugh. Earthquakes are common in Japan—that one was the third of the week—and the participants were, after all, at a seismology conference.

(VIEW COMPLETE ARTICLE)

Country / Region Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Surge of Ebola in Liberia May Be Linked to a Survivor

NEW YORK TIMES  by Sheri Fink                   July 10, 2015

A resurgence of Ebola in the last week in Liberia, which had been declared free of the disease, may have originated with a survivor still carrying the virus, according to scientists who analyzed the genetic sequence of the virus from the body of a 17-year-old Liberian boy who died of Ebola last week.

The boy’s virus did not match strains still circulating in the continuing outbreak in Guinea and Sierra Leone, meaning he was unlikely to have caught the virus through cross-border travel.

Country / Region Tags: 
General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Finger-prick, blood test for Ebola takes just minutes

THE WASHINGTON POST by

Public health officials may soon be able to screen patients for Ebola at border crossings and hospitals with a finger-prick blood test that takes mere minutes.

The development of the rapid diagnostic test, reported in The Lancet Thursday, represents a significant victory for scientists around the world who have been experimenting over the past year with all manner of vaccines, treatments and other ways of eradicating the virus.

Developing a way of confirming Ebola in a patient has been one of the top priorities. In the early stages the symptoms -- chest pain, cough, nausea -- can look like many other illnesses, making it very difficult for doctors to triage -- to determine who should be quarantined and who to send home. It can often take days or longer for laboratory tests, the current standard, to return a positive or negative result.

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Malaria morbidity and mortality in Ebola-affected countries caused by decreased health-care capacity, and the potential effect of mitigation strategies: a modelling analysis

LANCET by Patrick G. T. Walker and others                               Volume 15, No. 7, p825–832, July 2015
The ongoing Ebola epidemic in parts of west Africa largely overwhelmed health-care systems in 2014, making adequate care for malaria impossible and threatening the gains in malaria control achieved over the past decade. We quantified this additional indirect burden of Ebola virus disease.

We estimated the number of cases and deaths from malaria in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone from Demographic and Health Surveys data for malaria prevalence and coverage of malaria interventions before the Ebola outbreak. We then removed the effect of treatment and hospital care to estimate additional cases and deaths from malaria caused by reduced health-care capacity and potential disruption of delivery of insecticide-treated bednets. We modelled the potential effect of emergency mass drug administration in affected areas on malaria cases and health-care demand....

General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Vaccine trial won’t cause Ebola - WHO

GRAPHIC ONLINE by Rebecca Quisacde-Duho and Rhodaline Oppong                              June 20, 2015

Rebecca Quaicoe-Duho & Rhodaline Oppong
Rebecca Quaicoe-Duho & Rhodaline Oppong
Rebecca Quaicoe-Duho & Rhodaline Oppong
Rebecca Quaicoe-Duho & Rhodaline Oppong

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has assured Ghanaians that the proposed Ebola vaccine trial will not cause Ebola in the country.

WHO says it views the safety of people as paramount and would, therefore, not overlook any wrongdoing in the development of a vaccine.

 The WHO Country Representative, Dr Magda Robalo, gave the assurance at a public sensitisation forum in Accra last Thursday....

 Recently, following public agitations, the Minister of Health, Mr Alex Segbefia, called for more consultation on the proposed Ebola vaccine trial which was to be undertaken at Hohoe in the Volta Region.

Country / Region Tags: 
General Topic Tags: 
Problem, Solution, SitRep, or ?: 

Pages

Subscribe to Research
howdy folks