Ebola’s ‘magic pill’ might actually be a machine

Friday, September 11, 2015

Earlier this year, infectious disease specialist and Ebola survivor Ian Crozier made headlines when physicians found traces of the virus lurking in his eye, months after he had been declared free of the disease. Soon after, Crozier, who had contracted the virus while working in the Ebola Treatment Unit in Kenema, Sierra Leone, made the following remarks when asked about the promise of experimental anti-viral drugs:

“… we may have more to gain by paying attention to some relatively simple things. Most of the sickness and mortality in Ebola initially stems from severe losses through diarrhea and vomiting. So if we can figure out how to deliver intensive support that centers on fluid replacement, we may do much more to change the course of the disease than any single anti-viral drug.”

It was a fascinating comment, especially since anti-viral drugs, both for Ebola and beyond, are booming—the market is poised to have revenues of more than $30 billion by 2017. And in just the past year, the infectious disease sector has been buzzing with positive anti-viral news on the Ebola front. Mapp Pharmaceuticals began clinical trials of its antibody drug, ZMapp, in Liberia.

Source: Fortune (link opens in a new window)

Health Care
infectious diseases, vaccines