Newspaper article International New York Times

New Clues into Ebola as Nurse Improves ; Doctors Treated Patient with Experimental Drug in London after Relapse

Newspaper article International New York Times

New Clues into Ebola as Nurse Improves ; Doctors Treated Patient with Experimental Drug in London after Relapse

Article excerpt

Pauline Cafferkey was treated with an experimental antiviral compound that incorporates itself into the genetic material while the Ebola virus replicates.

A Scottish nurse who survived Ebola only to fall critically ill about nine months later with meningitis is beginning to recover, doctors have said.

"She's made significant progress in the past few days," said Dr. Daniel Bausch, a technical consultant with the World Health Organization who has visited the Royal Free Hospital in London, which is treating the nurse, Pauline Cafferkey. Dr. Bausch added on Wednesday that Ms. Cafferkey had improved so much that she was using an iPad.

Equally important, experts say, is what Ms. Cafferkey's infection is telling them about the virus, and the implications for other survivors in West Africa.

Dr. Bausch said that her blood and spinal fluid had tested positive for traces of the virus this month. Her blood was negative after it was recently retested.

She has been treated with an experimental antiviral compound that is thought to work by incorporating itself into the genetic material while the Ebola virus is being copied, stopping a new virus from forming. While it is unknown whether the compound helped Ms. Cafferkey recover, it was shown to protect 12 primates against a lethal Ebola virus infection, said Travis Warren, principal investigator at the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Disease in Fort Dietrich, Md.

Ms. Cafferkey's doctor had seen a presentation about the compound, GS5734, at a recent conference. "When he came back to the U.K., he immediately contacted us and said he was requesting compassionate use of the drug," said Norbert Bischofberger, chief scientific officer at Gilead Sciences in California, which produced the compound and safety-tested it in humans.

Scientists are compiling what they have observed in animals and are finding that perhaps they should not have been surprised by her illness. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.