A team of leading international scientists on Tuesday called for new Ebola vaccines to be made available in months rather than years and warned against complacency after a reduction in infection rates.
“Despite falling infection rates in West Africa, the risk that the current Ebola outbreak may not be brought completely under control remains,”
said Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, Britain’s biggest medical charity. Read more at: (Daily Mail)
Last month the amount of confirmed new Ebola infections was dropping in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. That is until the rapid rise of new Ebola cases in Guinea starting a few weeks ago, while in Liberia researchers are not sure if there will be sufficient number of patients to test the experimental vaccines.
The outbreak continues to wind down in Liberia, where doctors are now diagnosing just three to five new cases a week, compared to 300 a week in August, according to the World Health Organization.
Cases have declined so sharply that North Carolina drug developer Chimerix canceled a clinical trial of the antiviral brincidofovir, which was given to several American Ebola patients but which has never been formally tested against the disease.
Guinean President Alpha Conde has announced a national plan to have no Ebola cases by early March.
However, the number of new Ebola cases increased for the second consecutive week, with 144 new confirmed cases reported in the week ending on Feb. 8, according to the WHO.
The risk remains that Ebola vaccines may not bring the current Ebola outbreak completely under control according to leading international scientists.