EMEA Health and Science Correspondent
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Feb 3, 2015

Only 40 percent of Ebola funds reached target countries: study

LONDON (Reuters) – Almost $2.9 billion was pledged by the end of 2014 in donations to fight West Africa’s Ebola epidemic, yet only around 40 percent had actually reached affected countries, researchers said on Tuesday.

A study by the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs that tracked international donations showed barely $1.09 billion had reached the worst affected countries by the end of last year, they said.

Feb 3, 2015

Britain votes on allowing world’s first three-parent IVF babies

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain on Tuesday could become the first country to allow a “three-parent” IVF technique which doctors say will prevent some inherited incurable diseases but which critics see as a step towards creating designer babies.

Parliament will vote on the technique, called mitochondrial donation, which would be a medical world first for Britain but is fiercely disputed by some religious groups and other critics.

Feb 1, 2015

International campaigners urge UK to allow ‘three-parent’ IVF babies

LONDON, (Reuters) – Campaigners urged British lawmakers on Sunday to seize a chance to become the first in the world to allow three-way fertility treatments to families who want to avoid passing on incurable diseases to their children.

In an open letter ahead of a parliamentary vote scheduled for Tuesday, charities and advocacy groups said the opportunity “offers families the first glimmer of hope that they might be able to have a baby that will live without pain and suffering.”

Feb 1, 2015

International campaigners urge UK to allow “3-parent” IVF babies

LONDON, Feb 1 (Reuters) – Campaigners urged British
lawmakers on Sunday to seize a chance to become the first in the
world to allow three-way fertility treatments to families who
want to avoid passing on incurable diseases to their children.

In an open letter ahead of a parliamentary vote scheduled
for Tuesday, charities and advocacy groups said the opportunity
“offers families the first glimmer of hope that they might be
able to have a baby that will live without pain and suffering.”

Feb 1, 2015

Analysis: In pursuit of next-generation Ebola stockpile vaccines

LONDON (Reuters) – As West Africa’s devastating Ebola outbreak begins to dwindle, scientists are looking beyond the endgame at the kind of next-generation vaccines needed for a vital stockpile to hit another epidemic hard and fast.

Determined not to lose scientific momentum that could make the world’s first effective Ebola interventions a reality, researchers say the shots, as well as being proven to work, must be cheap, easy to handle in Africa and able to hit multiple virus strains.

Feb 1, 2015

In pursuit of next-generation Ebola stockpile vaccines

LONDON (Reuters) – As West Africa’s devastating Ebola outbreak begins to dwindle, scientists are looking beyond the endgame at the kind of next-generation vaccines needed for a vital stockpile to hit another epidemic hard and fast.

Determined not to lose scientific momentum that could make the world’s first effective Ebola interventions a reality, researchers say the shots, as well as being proven to work, must be cheap, easy to handle in Africa and able to hit multiple virus strains.

Jan 30, 2015

Study supports Roche’s disputed blockbuster flu drug Tamiflu

LONDON, Jan 30 (Reuters) – A major analysis of one of the world’s most fiercely disputed medicines, Roche’s Tamiflu, has found it cuts flu symptoms by a day and can help some patients avoid hospital treatment and complications.

But the drug can also have side effects, including nausea and vomiting, which should be balanced against its benefits, researchers who led the study said.

Jan 29, 2015

Trial finds GSK Ebola shot is safe and provokes immune response

LONDON, Jan 28 (Reuters) – First results from a human trial
of an Ebola vaccine from GlaxoSmithKline show it is safe
and generates an immune response, scientists said on Wednesday,
but larger trials are needed to see if it protects and if a
booster is needed.

The vaccine is being developed by the U.S. National
Institutes of Health (NIH) and GSK against the Zaire strain of
Ebola — the one circulating in West Africa — and the first
doses for a larger trial arrived in Liberia last week.

Jan 27, 2015

Scientists ask if Ebola immunises as well as kills

LONDON/DAKAR (Reuters) – A recent sharp drop in new Ebola infections in West Africa is prompting scientists to wonder whether the virus may be silently immunising some people at the same time as brutally killing their neighbours.

    So-called “asymptomatic” Ebola cases – in which someone is exposed to the virus, develops antibodies, but doesn’t get sick or suffer symptoms – are hotly disputed among scientists, with some saying their existence is little more than a pipe dream.

Jan 23, 2015

First GSK Ebola vaccine shipment due to arrive in Liberia

LONDON, Jan 23 (Reuters) – The first batch of
GlaxoSmithKline’s experimental Ebola vaccine has been
shipped to West Africa and is expected to arrive in Liberia
later on Friday, the British drugmaker said.

The shipment, of an initial 300 vials of the vaccine, will
be the first to arrive in one of the three main Ebola-affected
African countries, GSK said in a statement.

    • About Kate

      "I cover health and science news for the region of Europe, Middle East and Africa -- from flu pandemics to the newest planetary discovery to the latest drug and research developments. I joined Reuters in 1993 and worked in London, Amsterdam and Frankfurt before moving to BBC television to work on European politics for Newsnight for 2 years. Since returning to Reuters, I have also worked as a parliamentary correspondent in Westminster and on the main news desk of the London bureau."
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