WHO Recommends Use Of Two Monoclonal Antibodies Against Ebola Disease

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday recommended the use of two monoclonal antibodies against Ebola disease, reported The Reuters.

In its first guideline for Ebola virus disease therapeutics published on Friday, the WHO has called for countries to improve access to two monoclonal antibodies, mAb114, also known as Ansuvimab or Ebanga, and REGN-EB3, or Inmazeb against viral disease.

The recommendation follows a review and analysis of clinical trials for the monoclonal antibodies, which have been found to offer clear benefits for people who have tested positive for Ebola, which is often fatal.

According to the WHO, the two recommended therapeutics can be used for all patients confirmed positive for Ebola virus disease, including older people, pregnant and breastfeeding women, children and new born babies born to mothers with confirmed Ebola within the first seven days after birth. Patients should be given recommended neutralizing monoclonal antibodies as soon as possible after laboratory confirmation of diagnosis.

The new recommendations follow trials of the drugs against the hemorrhagic fever in Democratic Republic of Congo during a 2018-2020 outbreak there.

Dr Janet Diaz, lead of the clinical management unit in WHO’s Health Emergencies programme, told reporters in Geneva that studies had shown that the two treatments significantly reduced mortality.

“Pathways to access is a priority to work on right now,” she said.

The WHO cautioned though that access to both the treatments remained “challenging, especially in resource-poor areas.”

“WHO is ready to support countries, manufacturers and partners to improve access to these treatments, and to support national and global efforts to increase affordability,” the UN health agency said.

The global health body also provided recommendations regarding therapeutics that should not be used as treatments, which include ZMapp and remdesivir.

Notably, the worst Ebola epidemic in West Africa was reported between 2013 and 2016 when more than 11,300 people lost their lives to the disease. The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has had more than a dozen epidemics, the deadliest killing 2,280 people in 2020.

Caroline Finnegan

A professionnal journalist for the past ten years, I cover global news and economic affairs for The Chief Observer.

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