Ebola virus virion 670 x 447
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(Almost) everything you ever wanted to know about Ebola from TDWI on TV

The news is all about Ebola (all the time). It is a scary virus, killing anywhere from 60-90% of the people it infects. And it is spreading all too quickly in Western Africa, prompting some African countries to close their borders. The fact that some people develop bleeding problems has really freaked some people out …”you mean they bleed from their eyes!!” “or their ears??”

Here is a link to a story and video by our Dr. Kevin Campbell, TDWI contributor, that explains the disease.   

What really got everyone’s attention here in the US was when the news of the transport of Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol to Atlanta for treatment was reported. Would this lead to an outbreak of Ebola here in the US (and of course we all remember the movie “Outbreak” where an Ebola-like virus takes down movie stars!)? Some celebrities, like The Donald, went to the Twittersphere to share their misunderstanding of the disease:


Trump Ebola Tweet


I had a chance to talk on Fox News about whether bringing the two American victims back to the US posed any risk to the general public – the answer is a resounding “No!”. Not only were they transported using state of the art infection control garments and tents, but they are being housed in a unit specifically designed to contain deadly viruses like this one. Take a listen:


As you can see in the clip, Dr. Brantly walked off the ambulance in his infection control garment to the amazement of the viewing community who thought he was dying of the disease. It turns out that both of these brave Americans were treated with a new drug, ZMAPP, that may well provide the first effective treatment of the disease. Dr. Campbell explains how the drug works here.



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