A Third Ebola Patient Has Been Successully Treated

Another patient who contracted Ebola has been treated with the experimental ZMapp drug. William Poley, 29, is a British man who contracted Ebola in Sierra Leone, where he was working as a volunteer nurse. On August 24, 2014, he was flown to a hospital and put in a special isolation unit where he was treated with the experimental drug ZMapp. This makes him the third patient to be successfully cured with the drug—the other two patients where American aid workers who caught the disease whilst working in Liberia.

The disease is rampaging through West Africa and according to the World Health Organization (WHO) has killed more than 1,500 since March. ZMapp is one of several treatments for Ebola that is under development. The drug uses antibodies from tobacco plants that bind to the protein of the virus.

The drug is still in its experimental stage and has not yet been tested in humans. Although it has worked on the three patients, it will not be known if the drug can be used for widespread treatment until it is tested on a random group of people to prove effectiveness and safety. However, until then, the drug will not be available for treatment throughout West Africa.

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