Post-exposure Marburg vaccine shows promise

According to research published online in the July edition of Emerging Infectious Diseases, an experimental post-exposure vaccine for the Marburg haemorrhagic fever virus allowed five of six monkeys to survive infection.

The vaccine is the only successful post-exposure  vaccine for the treatment and is a promise candidate for use in humans, reports.

“In the current study, we achieved near complete protection from death when treatment with a single dose regimen was delayed 24 h[ours] and 33 percent protection when treatment was delayed 48 h[ours] post exposure," Thomas Geisbert of the U.S. National Emerging Infectious Diseases Institute in Massachusetts wrote in the study.

Five of six monkeys survived after being given the experimental vaccination 24 hours post-infection. The final monkey showed symptoms of Marburg fever and perished.

Findings suggest that the window of opportunity to offer the vaccine post-exposure may be longer for humans, as the authors note that Marburg infections usually progress faster in monkeys than they do in humans.

Related to Ebola, the Marburg virus belongs to the filovirus family. Those infected develop several symptoms, including fever and diarrhea, as well as internal and external bleeding. Up to 90 percent of those infected die. Though several vaccines are in early developmental stages, there is no treatment for Marburg.