Via International SOS's excellent Ebola site, an overview of an eventful day. The DRC/Malawi story is new to me. For details, click through and click again on the "Read more..." and "PDF" links.
Senegal: In a press conference, the Senegalese Minister of Health has confirmed an imported case of Ebola in the country. The case is a traveller from Guinea who, after testing, was isolated in the infectious disease ward of Fann Hospital, Dakar. International SOS is closely monitoring the situation.
WHO: The World Health Organization has issued the first progress report on the steps undertaken by West African nations to implement the WHO Ebola Response Roadmap (PDF). The Situation Report (1) provides the baseline of Ebola disease activity as at 28 August and the resources that have been put in place to combat the spread of the disease. The included maps help to illustrate the significant gaps that remain, not least in relation to the setup and staffing of Ebola Treatment Centres.
Malawi: Media sources are reporting that two refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo suspected of having Ebola symptoms escaped isolation before being fully examined by health officials. The refugees entered Malawi at the Songwe border, Karonga district and their current location is unknown.
Study: genetic analysis shows fast mutating Ebola virus – the rate of mutations of the Ebola virus could impact diagnostic testing, research on treatment and vaccine development. Between May and June, researchers from the United States sequenced and analysed genes of the Ebola virus from samples in more than 75 confirmed cases in Sierra Leone. They published the findings in Science and revealed that at least 12 people in Sierra Leone were infected from the traditional healer who was treating Ebola patients from Guinea.
Genetic analysis of virus samples from these cases showed that the genome changed quickly and mutated as it passed between people resulting in a separate lineage. The researchers note that these mutations could affect the ability to test and diagnose, especially using the PCR-based tests.
Keeping on top of the changes will allow the tests to be updated. “Vaccines and antibody-based treatments—such as the ZMapp drug that was used in a handful of patients—could also be affected by the kinds of changes the researchers identified.”
Sierra Leone: Ministry of Health has reported 27 more new cases. Read more...
Liberia: The Ministry of Health has reported 29 new cases and 28 deaths as of 25 August. Read more...