Tulane Gets $12M For Lassa Fever Animal Studies

Robert F. Garry , Jr., Ph.D.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Tulane University scientists will get $12 million for animal studies to test drug combinations to treat Lassa fever and to develop a vaccine for the deadly virus, which can cause bleeding from the mouth, nose and other places.

         Tulane's medical school says the National Institutes of Health are giving virologist Robert Garry's team grants for two five-year studies.

         One will evaluate a drug mixture to treat the virus. The other will work toward a vaccine based on a recently discovered target for antibodies.

         The illness is common in parts of West Africa. It's most often transmitted in food contaminated with rat feces or urine.

         The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say 100,000 to 300,000 people get ill from the virus each year, and 5,000 of them die.


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