DRC: the vaccine

DRC: the vaccine against Ebola is doing its evidence

Near of 78,000 people have been vaccinated against Ebola in the democratic Republic of the Congo from August 8, 2018, according to the latest balance sheet of the congolese government

Is “thousands of lives” saved, stated the minister of Health, Oly Ilunga Kalenga.

The vaccine used in the DRC is the rVSV-ZEBOV, developed by the public health Agency of Canada and manufactured by the american Merck. A vaccine that is still experimental but the use of which has been approved by the ethics Committee of the congolese on may 19, 2018. In France, a decree of 30 August 2018 authorises by way of derogation among professionals travelling to an area of the outbreak. Good tolerance of The rVSV-ZEBOV is the most advanced candidate vaccines against hemorrhagic fever that has claimed more than 11 000 deaths in West Africa between 2013 and 2015. It is a live vaccine, the vector is the vesicular stomatitis virus (a disease that affects mostly cattle, pigs and horses).

This modified vector welcomes a gene encoding a protein of the strain of Zaire Ebola virus (one of the five strains identified the virus, but the most lethal and responsible for most of the outbreaks known).

The vaccine has shown its effectiveness and its good tolerance in fifteen trials conducted in Africa, the United States and Europe.

A study published in December 2016 in The Lancet showed as well, on nearly 6000 patients in guinea, is a 100% effective from the 10th day after the injection.

“We realised that a number of vaccinated developed the infection,” nuance, however, professor Eric Delaporte, a researcher at the IRD.

But “no one has ever had a vaccine 100% effective regardless of the pathology.

And the benefit is higher. However, this can complicate the control of the epidemic.

“The rVSV-ZEBOV might also prevent the disease from developing in people coming to be infected. But it will be necessary to validate the use of post-exposure: available data are from in vitro models and in rare cases, patients accidentally exposed to the virus, then immediately vaccinated, none developed the disease.

Instability of the situation politiqueReste to know how long the vaccine is effective. The work presented in late October at the annual meeting of the american Society of tropical medicine and hygiene showed, after blood tests carried out on humanitarian vaccinated more than two years earlier, that the immune response induced by the various vaccine persisted for at least two and a half years. The strategy to use is also under discussion. The ring vaccination”, which is to vaccinate the entourage of the cases identified to oppose a “barrier” to the virus, should be preferred, reaffirmed the WHO in a recommendation in August 2018. But the instability of the political situation in the DRC will require may be to opt for an approach that is purely geographical. A paradigm shift that, “to be effective”, will require “much greater doses”, was concerned about a group of international experts in early February in The Lancet. .

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