TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2016

Antiviral compound protects against Ebola in nonhuman primates

Antiviral compound protects against Ebola in nonhuman primates | Courtesy of waterandhealth.org
Recent research has revealed an antiviral compound that protects nonhuman primates from contracting the Ebola virus infection.

The study returned findings showing that rhesus monkeys were protected against Ebola just three days after receiving compounds designed to block Ebola’s replication abilities.

"The compound, which is a novel nucleotide analog prodrug, works by blocking the viral RNA replication process," Travis Warren, Ph.D., a principal investigator at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), said. "If the virus can't make copies of itself, the body's immune system has time to take over and fight off the infection."

The compound, called GS-5734, may be useful as a potential treatment when it is further developed. The findings are considered a major breakthrough in the quest to develop a treatment for Ebola.

"This is the first example of a small molecule--which can be easily prepared and made on a large scale--that shows substantive post-exposure protection against Ebola virus in nonhuman primates," Sina Bavari, Ph.D., leader of the study and USAMRIID Science Director, said. "In addition to 100 percent survival in treated animals, the profound suppression of viral replication greatly reduced the severe clinical signs of disease."

Organizations in this story

U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) 1425 Porter Street Frederick, MD 21702-5011

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