Association for Free Research and International Cooperation

Clinical trials for four experimental Ebola treatments kicks off in the DRC

The Congolese government is still having hard times trying to contend the deadly Ebola virus which continues to claim more lives in the violence hit nation.

A recent report by the World Health Organisation revealed that among the recently discovered cases, new born babies not usually known to be infected by the virus have been identified. These babies are suspected to have contracted the disease through breast feeding and close contact with persons who had been affected

Amongst the 36 new confirmed cases of Ebola reported by the UN Health agency, 7 cases in newborn babies and infants younger than 2 years old were recorded while 6 cases were reported in children aged between 2 and 17.

The government has recently approved of clinical trials to test four experimental Ebola treatments in a bid to curb the rapid spread of the virus throughout the national territory.

The four treatments includes mAb114, developed by the United States government; ZMapp, made by Mapp Biopharmaceutical; Remdesivir, made by Gilead Sciences; and Regeneron’s REGN-EB3.

According to information released by the ministry of health in the DRC, the clinical trials will allow researchers to collect valuable data as the country continues efforts to eradicate the virus.

Early statistics from recent trails on 151 patients who received at least one of the vaccines as of last weekend indicates that 76 had recovered, 44 had died and 31 were still hospitalized bringing the mortality rate to 37 percent. This is highly opposed to the close to 80 percent reported among those who had not received treatment.

This current Ebola outbreak has been described as one of the worst recorded in the country. Figures from the WHO portrays that at least 228 people are believed to have died from the disease.

Meanwhile, health workers are confronted with several challenges especially with the recent attacks by rebels in districts where the virus has been spreading.

Despite the current effort but in by the authorities to contain the disease, WHO which has termed the current epidemic “complex and challenging” says it expects the outbreak to last another six months.

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