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Sep 5, 2014

WHO urges use of survivors’ serum against Ebola, backs vaccine trials

GENEVA (Reuters) – The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday blood-derived products and serum from survivors may be used to treat Ebola virus immediately and two vaccines could be available for health workers by year-end.

Existing supplies of all experimental medicines are limited and will not be sufficient for months to come, while the outlook for vaccine supplies looks “slightly better”, the WHO said in a statement after two-day talks attended by nearly 200 experts.

Sep 5, 2014

World Health Organization urges use of blood-derived drugs against Ebola, backs vaccine trials

GENEVA (Reuters) – The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday experts had agreed that blood-derived drug therapies and serum from survivors may be used for treatment of Ebola virus, and called for investment in the experimental drugs.

“There is a real opportunity that blood-derived products can be used now. This can be very effective in terms of treating patients,” WHO assistant director-general Marie-Paule Kieny told a news conference.

Sep 5, 2014

WHO urges use of blood-derived drugs against Ebola, backs vaccine trials

GENEVA, Sept 5 (Reuters) – The World Health Organisation
(WHO) said on Friday experts had agreed that blood-derived drug
therapies and serum from survivors may be used for treatment of
Ebola virus, and called for investment in the experimental
drugs.

“There is a real opportunity that blood-derived products can
be used now. This can be very effective in terms of treating
patients,” WHO assistant director-general Marie-Paule Kieny told
a news conference.

Sep 5, 2014

Drug and vaccine makers in race against Ebola

GENEVA, Sept 5 (Reuters) – Drug and vaccine companies are
racing to conduct clinical trials of potential treatments for
Ebola but it will be 2015 before there are any initial results
and much later before significant quantities could be available,
executives said on Friday.

In interviews on the sidelines of a meeting hosted by the
World Health Organisation (WHO), they said that efforts would
focus on developing safe and efficient products for human use
that could win fast-tracked regulatory approval.

Sep 4, 2014

WHO urges drug companies, regulators to speed Ebola work

GENEVA, Sept 4 (Reuters) – The World Health Organisation
(WHO) called on Thursday for pharmaceutical companies and
regulatory agencies to work together to accelerate development
of safe and efficient drugs and vaccines against Ebola.

Ten experimental treatments – eight drugs and “two promising
candidate vaccines” – have shown potential against the virus but
remain under investigation, the WHO said in a document
distributed at the start of a two-day meeting in Geneva.

Sep 4, 2014

Nigeria monitoring 400 contacts of doctor who died of Ebola

GENEVA, Sept 4 (Reuters) – Nigerian authorities are
monitoring nearly 400 people for signs of Ebola after they came
in contact with a Port Harcourt doctor who died of the disease
but hid the fact that he had been exposed, a senior Nigerian
health official said on Thursday.

Dr. Abdulsalami Nasidi, project director at Nigeria Centre
for Disease Control, said there was a sense of “hopelessness”
due to the lack of proven drugs or vaccines to treat Ebola that
has infected 18 people in Africa’s most populous nation.

Sep 4, 2014

Iran, U.S. meet as search for nuclear deal intensifies

GENEVA (Reuters) – Iran and the United States met in Geneva for bilateral talks on Thursday as international diplomacy intensifies to end a decade-old dispute over Tehran’s atomic activities by a new deadline in late November.

The office of European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton confirmed Iran and six world powers would hold their first negotiating round since they failed to meet a July 20 target date for an agreement in New York on Sept. 18.

Sep 3, 2014

Doctor with Ebola treated patients in Nigeria, left dozens at risk: WHO

GENEVA (Reuters) – A Nigerian doctor with Ebola carried on treating patients and met scores of friends, relatives and medics before his death, leaving about 60 of them at high risk of infection, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Wednesday.

Members of his church visited him in hospital in the oil hub Port Harcourt and performed a healing ceremony “said to involve the laying on of hands”, said the U.N. agency.

Sep 2, 2014

More than 1 million Ukrainians displaced by conflict – UNHCR

GENEVA (Reuters) – More than one million people have been uprooted by the conflict in Ukraine, including 260,000 within the country where further mass displacement is feared due to ongoing fighting, the United Nations said on Tuesday.

Some Ukrainian nationals have fled by motorcycle to Russia, while others have escaped the crisis by spending the summer months at European spas or visiting grandparents, it said.

Sep 1, 2014

U.N. to send team to investigate Islamic State crimes in Iraq

GENEVA (Reuters) – The United Nations agreed on Monday to send investigators to Iraq to examine crimes being committed by Islamic State militants on “an unimaginable scale”, with a view to holding perpetrators to account.

“We are facing a terrorist monster,” Iraq’s human rights minister, Mohammed Shia’ Al Sudani, told the U.N. Human Rights Council which adopted a resolution tabled by Iraq and France at an emergency sitting of the 47-member state forum in Geneva.