Oral vaccine protects chimpanzees from infecting with Ebola

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Oral vaccine protects chimpanzees from infecting with Ebola

Postby whbio » Mar 31 2017 4:08 pm

A new oral vaccine shows promise to protect chimpanzees and gorillas from infecting with Ebola virus, a virus that can cause acute, serious, and potentially fatal illness in primates. Since the vaccine can be taken by mouth, it is easier and less traumatic compared to vaccines that must be given by injection. For wildlife, this is a great advantage. The vaccine can be put into food, and after the animals eat the food they will be protected from being infected by Ebola virus.

The study was led by Dr Peter Walsh from the University of Cambridge and was conducted before the USA banned scientists from using captive chimpanzees in biomedical research. A total of ten chimpanzees were enrolled in the trial: six of them were given the new vaccine by mouth while the rest four were injected with it. The results were encouraging: the animals developed antibodies against Ebola. When the researchers transferred these antibodies to mice infected with Ebola, it extended the animals' survival. No serious adverse effects occurred.

Dr Walsh said that they must employ non-invasive methods. To assess the effect of the vaccine, the had to get antibodies from faeces rather than test blood. The aim of their study is to find a way to protect chimpanzees from Ebola infection and prevent the virus from spreading humans. Dr Walsh also noted that the vaccine tested in their study is safe.

Now, the researchers are working to develop a system for putting the vaccine into food that chimpanzees and gorillas will eat in the wild. However, it is not a easy task to launch a wider vaccination programme. Additionally, since the vaccine has only been tested in a small study, other aspects of the vaccine may not be well studied.

Ebola has become a big health threat to both humans and primates. A lot of efforts have been made to develop vaccines for humans. This study underscores primates may aslo benefit from vaccination.

Dr Walsh Ebola said that "Ebola has already killed about a third of gorillas in the world." It is imperative to take measures to protect primates form Ebola.

By the way, CusAb offers polyclonal antibody and monoclonal antibody. http://www.cusabio.com/catalog-20-1.html
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