New Ebola vaccine to be tested today in Britain

A healthy Briton will today become the first person to receive a potential new vaccine for the deadly Ebola virus.

The volunteer will be one of 60 people given the drug by experts at Oxford University.

If successful, it will be used to treat patients in West Africa where the worst ever outbreak has now killed more than 2,500 people.

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'Unlikely Ebola will be go away in next six months'

Professor Peter Piot helped discover the Ebola virus in 1976. Credit: ITV News

The doctor who helped discovered the deadly Ebola disease has said it is unlikely the epidemic will be over within the next six months.

Professor Peter Piot, Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, told ITV News the virus has now killed more people than all the previous recorded outbreaks.

He said: "Every day a hundred people are dying. The most affected countries need more doctors and nurses. There is currently about one physician for every 1,000 patients."

Phase one of a drugs trial to test a new Ebola vaccine begins in Britain today.

Professor Piot said: "I hope that the vaccine will work but it will be a few months before we have the results.

"Will the vaccine come in time to stop the current epidemic? We don't know.

"It is unlikely that this epidemic will be over within the next six months but we need to do everything we can."

New Ebola vaccine to be tested today in Britain

The safety trials will be conducted today at Oxford University. Credit: PA

A healthy Briton will today become the first person to receive a potential new vaccine for the deadly Ebola virus.

The volunteer will be one of 60 people given the drug by experts at Oxford University.

If successful, it will be used to treat patients in West Africa where the worst ever outbreak has now killed more than 2,500 people.

The vaccine, developed by the US National Institutes of Health and British drug company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), targets the "Zaire species" of Ebola, which is one of the strains circulating in West Africa.

It is the first time the vaccine, which has previously been successfully tested on primates, has been trialled on humans.

The volunteers will not be infected with the disease but given a single dose of the benign Ebola virus protein to generate an immune response.

The trials are conducted on healthy people to see whether they suffer any side effects.

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Obama: Chance of Ebola outbreak in US 'extremely low'

President Obama has said US government experts think there is an "extremely low" chance of an outbreak of Ebola in America.

Speaking at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Mr Obama said: "I want the American people to know that our experts here at the CDC and across our government agree that the chances of an Ebola outbreak here in the United States are extremely low."

Obama: The world is looking to US for Ebola help

President Obama has said the world is looking towards his government to help prevent the spread of the Ebola virus.

Speaking at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, he said: "The world is looking to us, the United States, and it's a responsibility we embrace."

"We're prepared to take leadership on this, to provide the capabilities that only America has and to mobilise the world in ways only America can do."

President Obama said the world was looking to the US to help with the Ebola virus. Credit: RTV

No 'red flags' since start of Ebola vaccine trial

A safety trial of an experimental vaccine for the deadly Ebola virus has been tested on 10 volunteers without any "red flags" indicating a negative reaction so far.

Another 10 volunteers will be injected in the coming days as part of the trial, which is taking place in the state of Maryland.

Researchers will determine not only whether the vaccine causes adverse reactions but also whether it triggers the production of antibodies against the deadly virus, which has claimed the lives of over 2,200 people in West Africa.

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Unicef appeals for $200m to fight Ebola outbreak

UN aid agency Unicef has launched an appeal to raise $200m to fight the Ebola outbreak in west Africa.

It is part of a broader appeal from governments and other humanitarian groups for almost $1 billion to fight the disease.

Unicef, which is responsible for the welfare of children in emergency situations, estimates that 8.5 million children and people under the age of 20 live in affected areas in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia

Afshan Khan, Unicef's Director of Emergency Programmes, said: “It is closing schools, destroying health systems and threatening the very fabric of communities. This is a crisis of enormous proportions.”

Ebola outbreak 'requires billion-dollar response'

Credit: Reuters

The unprecedented Ebola outbreak in West Africa requires a $1 billion response to keep its spread within the "tens of thousands" of cases, a United Nations officials has said.

"The amount for which we requested was about $100 million a month ago and now it is $1 billion, so our ask has gone up 10 times in a month"

– Dr. David Nabarro, senior U.N. coordinator for Ebola.
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