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Anecdotal evidence about experimental Ebola therapies

Ebola situation assessment
21 August 2014

Clinicians working in Liberia have informed WHO that 2 doctors and 1 nurse have now received the experimental Ebola therapy, ZMapp.

The nurse and one of the doctors show a marked improvement. The condition of the second doctor is serious but has improved somewhat.

According to the manufacturer, the very limited supplies of this experimental medicine are now exhausted.

ZMapp is one of several experimental treatments and vaccines for Ebola that are currently undergoing investigation. At present, supplies of all are extremely limited.

On 4–5 September, WHO will host a consultation on potential Ebola therapies and vaccines in Geneva. The consultation has been convened to gather expertise about the most promising experimental therapies and vaccines and their role in containing the Ebola outbreak in west Africa.

The expertise among the more than 100 participants is wide, ranging from pharmaceutical research and the clinical demands of Ebola care, to expertise on ethical, legal, and regulatory issues. More than 20 experts from west Africa are expected to attend.

Issues of safety and efficacy will be discussed together with innovative models for expediting clinical trials. Possible ways to ramp up production of the most promising products will also be explored.

Presentations about the real conditions and challenges in affected African countries are intended to anchor all discussions and shape the consensus advice that is expected to emerge.