April 6, 2015 – Ebola Vaccine


Anchor lead: A couple of promising vaccines against Ebola have shown up, Elizabeth Tracey reports

Good news may be emerging on an effective vaccine against Ebola virus infection, with reports of the protective power of a couple of vaccine candidates.  Why has it taken so long?  Mike Klag, dean of the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins, comments.

Klag: It hasn’t been that challenging, we’ve had a number of vaccines that have been developed. The challenge was financial, there was no market and there were no resources. This was seen as a sporadic disease, affected very few people at a time in the poorest countries on earth. So there was no economic incentive to test these vaccines but vaccines have been developed.  What we see now is that there is a tremendous amount of resources being put into testing vaccines.  As the epidemic wanes we don’t know if we’ll have the statistical power in those studies to see if they work.  :29

Klag credits international agreements to compensate pharmaceutical companies for vaccine development as key.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.