a students' magazine

High hopes for medicine

Hi there, happy new year! Has this new year begun well? For medicine it has started in the best way possible because the Italian Emergency doctor Fabrizio Pulvirenti has just recovered from Ebola after 37 days of hospitalization. Have you heard the good news?

So this is a great achievement for medical science because it is very difficult to cure Ebola. Indeed, Ebola is a life-threatening virus disease caused by a virus species called “Ebola virus” from the name of the Ebola River in Zaire (Central Africa) were it spread in 1976. Zaire ebola virus has the highest mortality rate of the ebola viruses and induces in humans hemorrhagic fever and death; this is the virus that has caused the epidemic in West Africa since 2014 and that is scaring all the world; today the victims are 8.153.

Probably humans contracted Ebola from infected animals, very likely from fruit bats or chimpanzees, and today this plague is highly contagious; for this reason the doctors who try to help infected people risk catching this illness; indeed Fabrizio Pulvirenti was infected in Sierra Leone while he was giving aid to the sick people there.

Unfortunately (and this is the main problem) they haven’t found a cure or a vaccine for Ebola yet. But pharmaceutical science is improving and Fabrizio’s healing is a good hope to find a way to defeat the disease. Recently also other ill volunteer doctors, like the American Kent Brantly, Nancy Writebol and the English Will Pooley, were all healed using Zmapp: an experimental biopharmaceutical serum that can destroy Ebola virus, but this therapy is still under development and it isn’t safe yet.

However, we hope that all these good results could lead up to a definitive remedy that will put an end to Ebola and stop the death of so many people!

See you soon 🙂




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