Drug Cocktail Cures Ebola in Monkeys
Human tests come next
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 14, 2012 12:29 PM CDT
A file photo of two macaques monkeys in Algiers.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – A potentially big breakthrough against the Ebola virus: Researchers came up with a drug cocktail that completely cured infected monkeys, reports io9. In the study, scientists infected 12 monkeys with the particularly lethal Zaire strain of the virus. Four that got the cocktail within 24 hours survived, two of the four that got it within 48 hours lived, and the four who got no dose were dead in five days, notes Wired.

"The treatment works by having the antibodies slow down the replication rate of the virus in the infected monkey until its own immune system is able to kick-in and finish the job," explains George Dvorsky at io9. It's not ready for humans, though biologists sound confident it won't be too long before the treatment becomes a staple kept on hand for outbreaks. "This is certainly a viable strategy, and they have only a few steps before they can go through to humans," says one.

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