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Scientists find weakness in deadly Ebola and Marburg virus (warning nasty pictures)

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posted on Aug, 25 2011 @ 01:39 PM

What does Ebola do?

Ebola kills by turning your internal organs into soup, literally. As your body disintegrates you bleed out of every orifice on your body and also through some newly created ones. Ebola Soup anyone?

Ebola has around a 90% mortality rate, this means that if you happen to catch Ebola, by playing with rotten carcasses or possibly in bat caves, you will have a 10% chance of survival. Source1

It first emerged in 1976 in villages along the Ebola River in the Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and is usually fatal in humans and in other primates such as monkeys, gorillas and chimpanzees.

So far, there have been about two dozen Ebola outbreaks in Africa.

No one knows how the virus is spread, and there are no available vaccines or anti-viral drugs that fight the infections.But the new research suggests the virus has a weakness in the form of a well-known protein called Niemann-Pick.Source2

Weakness in Ebola and Marburg virus found

Harvard Medical School found a protein that could lead to a cure against Ebola, The researchers are optimistic that this new understanding of how Ebola gets into cells may eventually lead to treatments. The epedemics is useually short term, but for those infected its no fun and most of them die a horrible death, so a treatment is very welcome.

A protein that helps transport cholesterol inside cells may be a key to developing drugs to treat Ebola, a rare but lethal virus for which there are no known treatments, US researchers said.

Laboratory mice bred to produce low levels of this protein — known Niemann-Pick C1 — survived exposure to both Ebola, which causes a hemorrhagic fever, and its cousin, Marburg virus.

“Mice that have less of this protein are very resistant to being killed by Ebola and the Marburg virus,” said Chandran, who worked with researchers at Harvard, the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases and the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research

People with Niemann-Pick disease have two abnormal copies of the gene that make this protein, but the mice used in Chandran’s lab only had one working copy of this gene, suggesting that simply reducing the amount of the Niemann-Pick protein may help protect people from the virus.

The researchers are optimistic that this new understanding of how Ebola gets into cells may eventually lead to treatments.

But he acknowledges it will take many years and possibly even a decade, before treatments would be available for human use.

edit on 25-8-2011 by Mimir because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 25 2011 @ 01:46 PM
reply to post by Mimir

Explanation: S&F!

Personal Disclosure:
Bloody Hell! That's just bat guano crazy AWESOME!

P.S. Make this go VIRAL!

edit on 25-8-2011 by OmegaLogos because: Edited to add the P.S.

posted on Aug, 25 2011 @ 01:48 PM
You might want to warn people that your post contains a graphic photograph. It caught me by surprise. Not that I am offended by it, but a little heads up would be nice, especially since I had some food in my mouth.

Thanks for the post though, would be nice if we could eradicate Ebola. It must be one of the worst ways to die, basically being eaten up alive. Reminds me of the Alien movies.

ETA: I remember seeing a video a few years back of a lady who had Ebola and was throwing up....basically her insides were coming out. I could only imagine what that poor woman went through!
So yeah, anything that helps us get a step closer to eradicating it, will be much appreciated!
edit on 25-8-2011 by TortoiseKweek because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 25 2011 @ 01:54 PM
reply to post by TortoiseKweek

Sorry about that, added a warning in the header and a extra picture.

This sure is one sickness i would like to avoid.

posted on Aug, 25 2011 @ 04:23 PM
Yes, Ebola is a horrible way to go. but the one saving grace is that you have to come into physical contact with infected material. In other words, it is not airborne like the flu or the common cold.

But we did have a very close call back in 1989. It happened at the Simian quarantine facility in Reston Virginia. An air borne and 100% fatal monkey Ebola strain hit the facility and the USAMRIID and the CDC did a chemical nuke job on the building. It was then sealed up and eventually torn down.

The two frightening things about that outbreak were...
1 - It was an airborne and highly virulent strain of Ebola
2 - When tested at the CDC it was close enough to a human strain that it tested positive as the Ebola Zaire strain.

There was a book written about it titled "The Hot Zone". They also made a movie based on the book. Below is a link and a couple of quotes from the wiki site on it.

The Hot Zone

The Hot Zone is a best-selling[1] 1994 non-fiction bio-thriller by Richard Preston about the origins and incidents involving hemorrhagic fevers, particularly the Ebola and Marburg viruses. The basis of the book was Preston's 1992 New Yorker article "Crisis in the Hot Zone". The filoviruses Ebola and Marburg are Biosafety Level 4 agents. Biosafety Level 4 agents are extremely dangerous to humans because they are very infectious, have a high mortality rate, and there are no known prophylactics, treatments, or cures. Along with describing the history of these two Central Africa illnesses, Preston describes an incident in which Ebola was found in a Reston, Virginia, monkey quarantine facility less than fifteen miles (24 km) away from Washington, DC. The original Reston, VA facility located at 1946 Isaac Newton Square was torn down sometime between 1995 and 1998.[2]

The real nightmare is that if the Ebola virus ever goes airborne without losing it's virulence or mortality rate it could possibly wipe out a significant portion of the human race in a very short time. Keep in mind that the 90% mortality rate only applies if there is adequate medical care given. A massive outbreak would soon overwhelm the hospitals and their life support equipment that is necessary to survival.

And that is a real danger since the Ebola Reston strain has been found in pigs in the Philippines among other places and species, including one bird species. But the pigs are the most worrisome since they are the nearly perfect mutating laboratory for viruses. If a pig is infected with two or more viruses at the same time they will trade traits. Most of the mutations are non viable but every once in a while one becomes dangerous to animals and/or humans. Below is another link to a site that deals more with the Philippine pig problem.

Ebola in the Phillipines

posted on Sep, 5 2011 @ 10:32 AM
Just a small information video about ebola, for those who dont like reading

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