FRIDAY, July 20, 2018 (HealthDay News) — Two types of antibodies from the blood of Ebola survivors protected animals against strains of the virus that cause deadly infections in people, researchers report.
It may be possible to use these antibodies to create a treatment for Ebola, the researchers said.
The team, led by Dr. James Crowe of Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, and Alexander Bukreyev of University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, analyzed blood samples from 17 Ebola survivors. Two survivors had antibodies that prevented the virus from entering cells and causing infection in animals.
It’s important to note, however, that animal studies frequently do not produce the same results in humans.
An experimental antibody-based Ebola treatment called ZMapp has shown promise in a clinical trial, but it targets only one of the five known species of Ebola virus. The new study found that the two antibodies provided protection in animals against three Ebola species.
The study, published July 17 in the journal Immunity, was funded by the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
The World Health Organization has more on Ebola.