Animal tests on an experimental vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline Plc. (GSK) are showing bright prospects, leading scientists to start human tests.
Monkeys injected with the experimental drug did not not develop systems five weeks later and survived, Bloomberg reported Monday, citing the scientific journal Nature Medicine.
The findings came two days after a World Health Organization statement that preventive treatments may be available as early as next month for health workers in West Africa, where the disease has killed more than 2,000 people.
All of the animals injected with the vaccine survived Ebola while those that went unprotected died within six days, the report said.
The vaccine developed by London-based Glaxo prompts an immune response using a single gene from Ebola inserted into the body using a less dangerous virus.
The study was aimed at determining if it is safe and if it induces a response that would be protective, Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health was quoted as saying.
The vaccine is the furthest along in trials among three or four in development, according to the United States National Institutes of Health.
Among the treatments being pursued is ZMapp, a drug devolped by Mapp Biopharmaceutical Inc. that was given to two Americans who contracted Ebola and later improved.
Inserm, the French national health institute, is talking with Guinea health authorities about human trials of drugs from Fujifilm Holdings Corp. and Tekmira Pharmaceuticals Corp.
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