Successful Ebola vaccine will be fast-tracked for use

NEW YORK - A highly effective vaccine that guards against the deadly Ebola virus could be available by 2018, says the World Health Organization.

Trials conducted in Guinea, one of the West African countries most affected by an outbreak of Ebola that ended this year, show it offers 100% protection.

The vaccine is now being fast-tracked for regulatory approval.

Manufacturer Merck has made 300,000 doses of the rVSV-ZEBOV vaccine available for use should Ebola strike.

GAVI, the global vaccine alliance, provided $5m for the stockpile.

Results, published in The Lancet medical journal, show of nearly 6,000 people receiving the vaccine, all were free of the virus 10 days later.

In a group of the same size not vaccinated, 23 later developed Ebola.

Only one person who was vaccinated had a serious side effect that the researchers think was caused by the jab. This was a very high temperature and the patient recovered fully.

It is not known how well the vaccine might work in children since this was not tested in the trial.

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