Canadian researchers make advance against Ebola
Scientists from the Public Health Agency of Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory have developed an injection capable of slowing the virus if given within 48 hours of exposure, according to OttawaCitizen.com.
Previous treatments with the same results have proven effective only if administered within half an hour of exposure.
The new treatment works by slowing the spread of the virus, which gives the body's immune system more time to kill off a particular strain of the virus.
"It's been a lot of work," Gary Kobinger, the study's lead author, said, OttawaCitizen.com reports. "We're not an overly big community working on this problem, but it's one with a lot of people and a lot of resources and a lot of heart."
Kobinger and his team have been working on developing an effective treatment for the deadly illness for over a decade.
The new treatment is a cocktail of three antibodies that are natural markers for the invading virus. The scientists managed to isolate and clone the antibodies, then combine them in a high enough concentration to make them capable of destroying the disease. The combination is considered nearly 100 percent effective if given within 24 hours of exposure and 50 percent effective if given within 48 hours of exposure.
"[Ebola]'s very devastating. Everything falls apart," Kobinger said, according to OttawaCitizen.com. "This is a really important step forward...we think we're going to save lives, ultimately."