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Hepatitis and Sclerosis Drugs Show Promise in Treating Ebola [VIDEO]

Update Date: Mar 22, 2017 08:25 AM EDT

A pivotal study looked into drugs used in hepatitis and multiple sclerosis to treat and ease the symptoms of Ebola. Interferon Beta-1a was used in clinical trials to be able to increase the chances of survival of Ebola victims. At present, this is currently the first trial that has shown promising results in humans suffering from the virus.

To date, there is no treatment or post-exposure prophylaxis available for patients with EVD. Clinical trials were already performed to find a possible cure or treatment that can increase the chances of survival in patients. However, the recently conducted Interferon ß-1a treatment is the only trial that produced promising results for human patients, Science Daily reported.

In the experiment, nine EVD patients were treated with Interferon ß-1a and were compared with 21 other infected individuals that were not given treatment at the center located in Guinea, West Africa from May 2015 to June 2015.

By observation, 67 percent of the Interferon ß-1a treated patients were still alive after 21 days compared to the 19 percent of the patients who were not given the same drug. Those treated with Interferon ß-1a also showed less clinical symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, the National Post News further cites.

Although the experiment is still in the early stage and had the limitations of a single arm, non-randomized study, data gathered from the experimentation is enough to further continue trials and experimentations. There is no approved antiviral that exist to treat Ebola, but after several experimentations including eight other different drugs, Interferon ß-1a showed to be the one with the most potential.

Interferons belong to a family of naturally occurring proteins that can prevent a viral attack to the human body. They can prevent viruses from entering target cells and can also diminish chances of viral replication in the body. Since the drug is already being used in treating hepatitis and multiple sclerosis, experts are seeing this drug as a favorable and safe treatment that can be used in addressing EVD.


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