Did the Ebola vaccines came too late? Will they still be effective when the next Ebola genocide happens again? Is it a measure coming too late to make positive impact on the dwindling Ebola virus infection at present?
If we remember what happened to the flu vaccines which were produced for this year’s flu season. They ended up rather very ineffective against the dominant flu virus. Probably the same thing may happen to the Ebola virus vaccines.
However, Canadian scientists expressed their opinion about the Ebola vaccines their pharmaceutical company is now producing. The virus may mutate in the next epidemic, which viruses are highly capable of but according to them, but Ebola virus doesn’t mutate as fast as those of flu and HIV. So, there’s a great possibility that the vaccines will be very effective against the virus. The probability of failing because of mutation is there but very unlikely.
Pharmaceutical companies approved to manufacture Ebola virus vaccines were Glaxo-SmithKline, Merck and Johnson & Johnson. Glaxo-SmithKline had already sent their first shipment to Liberia about 300 doses of experimental vaccines. These are for health care personnel use only for the meantime.
If successful, a bigger batch will be manufactured forthe general population especially in those places where the virus keeps on coming back.
The Ebola virus infection happens almost every year after it was first discovered in 1976 in Zaire. Every year the virus manage to infect people in different places but on a very insignificant scale. It again happened in Sudan with 34 cases and 22 deaths in 1979. The virus found its way to the US and other countries from 1989 to 90 with no fatalities.
Then it returned to Zaire in 1995, now Democratic Republic of Congo with 318 cases and 250 fatalities but not before infecting 52 people in Gabon in 1995 killing 31.
The virus then returned almost every year in different places with varying number of cases and deaths until the 2014 breakout which prompted the need of creating Ebola vaccines. Last year’s breakout rose to more than 20,000 cases and not less than 8,000 deaths. The 3 West African nations worst hit were Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
The data was taken from Centers for the Disease Control and Prevention website.