Five co-authors on the latest study on Ebola which was published on Thursday, that discovered the virus had mutated many times during the outbreak making establishing a treatment more difficult were killed by the virus before their research was published.
This highlights the huge risk undertaken by those working to combat its spread. Mbalu Fonnie, Alex Moigboi, Alice Kovone, Muhammad Fullah and Sheik Umar worked with lead researchers at Harvard university to examine the current outbreak and were all experienced members of the Kenena government hospital’s Lassa fever team. Their work sequenced the virus genomes from 78 patients and was able to trace the outbreak in Sierra Leone to a funeral of a healer.
Khan told Reuters two weeks before his death that he feared for his life and hoped the virus wouldn’t kill him.