Since the outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease EVD, thousands of innocent lives in the West Africa has been claimed by the deadly epidemic,
Scientists and medical experts are trying every possible way to fight the deadly Ebola virus and limit it’s outspread. But all the hard efforts turned to be of very less help till date.
However, the only silver lining is that experimental drugs are been used to treat the victims of this deadly virus and it has shown some positive results too. But it’s a long way to announce the same as a cure for Ebola
However, there is some good news in store.
A team from the Health Protection Research Unit at the University of Liverpool’s Institute of Infection and Global Health, said they have stumbled across an existing drug used in the treatment of severe heart disease, which could be adapted to fight the contagious Ebola virus.
It was gathered that the experts looked at what proteins inside a cell are critical for the functions of Ebola virus and are hijacked by the virus to help with infection. One of the proteins they have targeted is known as VP24.
This protein disrupts signaling in infected human cells and disrupts the body’s immune system and the fight against the virus.
They further tried to find out if any existing drugs are available that could block the function of this particular protein.
And to their amazement they found the heart drug ‘ouabain’. This drug when administered can reduce the virus’ replication.
According to the team, further tests need to be done to ascertain the efficacy of the drug, but as the heart drug is already in use, much of the work to test whether it is safe for humans has already been completed.
Speaking on their study, Julian Hiscox from the university’s Institute of Infection and Global Health, who led the research, said: “This study shows how existing therapeutics can be identified and potentially repurposed for anti-viral therapy.
“The technique of using existing and tested drugs for a different purpose can save considerable time and ultimately, lives.”