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Biological Health Hazard – Hemorrhagic Fever (Ebola virus): Update


Published Date: 2016-03-20 20:08:45
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Ebola update (25): Guinea flare-up, Liberia, Sierra Leone, research
Archive Number: 20160320.4107350

In this update:
[1] Guinea: Ebola 4th death
[2] Guinea 4th death, Liberia, Sierra Leone, research

[1] Guinea: Ebola 4th death
Date: Sun 20 Mar 2016
Source: Cairns Post [edited]

A 4th person has died of Ebola in Guinea in the latest flare-up of an epidemic that has killed more than 11 300 people in that country, Sierra Leone and Liberia since 2013 but now claims few victims.

“The young girl who was hospitalised at the Ebola treatment centre in Nzerekore is dead,” said Fode Tass Sylla, spokesman for the centre that coordinates Guinea’s fight against the virus.

Three others have died of the virus since 29 Feb [2016].

Health workers on Sat [19 Mar 2016] also stepped up efforts to trace anyone who could have come into contact with the family.

The world’s worst recorded Ebola epidemic is believed to have started in Guinea and killed about 2500 people there by December last year [2015], at which point, the UN World Health Organisation said it was no longer actively transmitted.

Communicated by:
ProMED-mail from HealthMap Alerts

[See several news items below regarding actions being taken in Guinea to control this new set of cases to be certain the virus won’t spread. WHO has warned that Ebola could resurface at any time, since it can linger in the eyes, central nervous system and bodily fluids of some survivors. Therefore, small flare-ups such as this most recent one in Guinea may continue. In addition, the consumption of Ebola virus-infected bush meat may contribute to new flare-ups. Therefore, it is important for countries in West Africa to remain vigilant and always be alert to new cases. – Mod.LK]


[2] Guinea news, Liberia, Sierra Leone, research

17 Mar 2016 Guinea: UN health agency sends specialists to help contain Ebola flare-up in Guinea
[According to a World Health Organization press release, Guinea’s National Emergency Response Center is convening a meeting today [18 Mar 2016] to further coordinate a rapid response to contain the latest outbreak. Yesterday [17 Mar 2016], Guinea’s Ministry of Health, WHO, the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) sent in investigators.]

18 Mar 2016 Guinea: Health workers rush to contain fresh Ebola outbreak in Guinea
[…The World Health Organization (WHO) and aid agencies have sent experts to investigate the origin of the new cases and to identify, isolate, vaccinate and monitor all of their contacts.

The Alliance for International Medical Action (ALIMA) has reopened its Ebola treatment unit in Nzerekore, while the United Nations children’s agency (UNICEF) is reinforcing its team in the region and providing protective equipment and medicine.

According to Augustin Augier of ALIMA [Alliance for International Medical Action]: “There has been a very professional and experienced response across the board. We are doing all we can to be ready to receive more cases. ALIMA [is] flying in more staff from Paris.”]

18 Mar 2016 Guinea: Ebola clinic reopens in Guinea after virus resurfaces
[…The Guinean government said a quarantined area around the family’s home would be established and announced a door-to-door search for other potential EVD cases in the district.]

19 Mar 2016 Guinea: Experts sent to new Ebola site
[…Teams of health-care workers, including epidemiologists, disease surveillance experts and vaccinators, are now arriving in the area in an effort to stop the EVD outbreak before it spreads, WHO said.

According to a statement from the World Health Organization on Thursday [17 Mar 2016], “WHO continues to stress that Sierra Leone, as well as Liberia and Guinea, are still at risk of Ebola flare-ups (largely due to virus persistence in some survivors), and must remain on high alert and ready to respond.” More specialists are expected to arrive in the coming days.]

12 Mar 2016 Liberia: PREVAIL enrolls 1034 Ebola survivors for immunity study
[About 1034 Ebola survivors have been enrolled in the Partnership for Research on Ebola Virus in Liberia (PREVAIL) study to determine whether they have developed immunity that will protect them from future infection of the disease, reports said on Sat [12 Mar 2016]. PREVAIL is a Liberia-U.S. clinical research partnership launched to study people in Liberia who survived the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).

Making the disclosure at the Ministry of Information regular press briefing at the ministry in Monrovia, the Principal Investigator of PREVAIL, Dr. Masoka Fallah, said this number is part of a total of 7500 people anticipated to be enrolled during the exercise.

According to Fallah, those already enrolled are survivors aged between 26 and 30 years, with those 18 years old and younger constituting 19 percent of survivors and 30 percent constituting close contacts.

Dr. Fallah said the study is intended to better understand the long-term health consequences of EVD and assess whether previous EVD infected individuals can transmit infections to close contacts and sexual partners.

“By comparing findings from Ebola survivors and their close contacts, we can identify which medical problems are Ebola specific,” he noted.

According to him, they are testing blood samples from both groups for [antibodies] from past Ebola infections, adding that they will also sample various body fluids to see whether and how long survivors can harbor remnants of the Ebola virus.]

17 Mar 2016 Sierra Leone: UN confirms Sierra Leone’s Ebola flare-up is over, but cautions more are possible
[The United Nations reported today [17 Mar 2016] that, after 42 days of observation (2 incubation cycles), the latest resurgence of Ebola virus disease (EVD) transmission in Sierra Leone is over, but the UN cautioned that the West African region remains at risk and should remain on alert.]
[This is especially true now that Guinea is back on alert after 2 cases of EVD. See ProMED-mail Ebola update (15): Guinea, confirmed 20160317.4101955 and the reports above.]

18 Mar 2016 statement by the Minister of Health and Sanitation, Dr. Abu Bakarr Fofanah to mark the end of the 2nd outbreak of Ebola virus disease in Sierra Leone

Dr. Fofanah announced: “I am pleased to announce that the government of Sierra Leone, through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, has been informed by the World Public Health Governing body, the Health Organization, that the 2nd outbreak of Ebola virus disease which was announced on 2 Jan 2016 has ended today [Thu 17 Mar 2016]. …-more. [ProMED-mail Rapporteur Kunihiko Iizuka]

[ProMED thanks Kunihiko Iizuka for this submission. It is now critical that Sierra Leone, as well as the other African countries affected by Ebola, remain vigilant for cases and strengthen the health care infrastructure to respond to future flare-ups, as just occurred in Guinea. Since the initial outbreak is believed to have started in Guinea, there is no question that Ebola virus can spread easily among countries. – Mod.LK]

Corti D, Misasi J, Mulangu S. (18 Mar 2016). Protective monotherapy against lethal Ebola virus infection by a potently neutralizing antibody. _Science_, Vol. 351, Issue 6279,1339-1342. DOI: 10.1126/science.aad5224.
[Abstract. Ebola virus disease in humans is highly lethal, with case fatality rates ranging from 25 to 90 percent. There is no licensed treatment or vaccine against the virus, underscoring the need for efficacious countermeasures. We ascertained that a human survivor of the 1995 Kikwit Ebola virus disease outbreak maintained circulating antibodies against the Ebola virus surface glycoprotein for more than a decade after infection. From this survivor we isolated monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) that neutralize recent and previous outbreak variants of Ebola virus and mediate antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity in vitro. Strikingly, monotherapy with mAb114 protected macaques when given as late as 5 days after challenge. Treatment with a single human mAb suggests that a simplified therapeutic strategy for human Ebola infection may be possible.]

[Compiled by: Celeste Whitlow <>]

Communicated by:

[An interactive HealthMap/ProMED-mail map of Guinea is available at:]

See Also

Ebola update (24): Guinea, confirmed 20160317.4101955Ebola update (22): long-term sequelae, news, research 20160313.4090091
Ebola update (23): comment, pregnant women, news, research 20160316.4098040
Ebola update (22): long-term sequelae, news, research 20160313.4090091
Ebola update (21): Sierra Leone, herd immunity, possible new drug 20160310.4081498
Ebola update (20): new antiviral, prevention 20160306.4073116
Ebola update (19): WHO, relapse in UK (Scotland), prevention, research, funding 20160302.4064754
Ebola update (18): WHO, susp, research, funding, NGO, corr 20160229.4058786
Ebola update (17): UK nurse readmitted, EVD survivor complications, research 20160224.4047552
Ebola update (16): WHO comment, funding, vaccine 20160221.4039174
Ebola update (15): WHO response comment, vaccine 20160218.4030271
Ebola update (14): research, funding, vaccine, NGO 20160214.4021318
Ebola update (13): rapid test, research, funding 20160210.4010884
Ebola update (12): Sierra Leone, research, funding, vaccine 20160207.4002006
Ebola update (11): Sierra Leone, new case, controversy 20160203.3990396
Ebola update (10): Sierra Leone, vaccine, funding 20160131.3981594
Ebola update (09): funding, correction 20160127.3970963
Ebola update (08): Sierra Leone, vaccine, research, video 20160124.3962240
Ebola update (07): Sierra Leone, 2nd new case 20160121.3955860
Ebola update (06): 5 mysteries about EVD, Sierra Leone new case, followup 20160117.3944673
Ebola update (05): WHO declares Liberia free, Sierra Leone new case 20160115.3938471
Ebola update (04): WHO, prevention, research, drugs & vaccines 20160113.3933860
Ebola update (03): WHO, prevention, survivors, stigma, research, drugs, vaccines 20160110.3924235
Ebola update (02): WHO, monitoring, lessons, research 20160106.3915785
Ebola update (01): management, vaccine, treatment, monitoring 20160103.3908196

A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases

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