• U.S company set to test an Ebola vaccine

    By: Erica Byfield


    DEKALB COUNTY, Ga - Channel 2 Action News learned that an American company is ready to test an Ebola vaccine.

    Newlink Genetics is one of several companies that the CDC is working on for experimental treatments or vaccines.

    Newlink is based in Ames, Iowa and is best known for their work in the pancreatic cancer field. Given the crisis in West Africa, the company has sped up efforts to start clinical trials on an Ebola vaccine.

    "Everyone wants to get this done, everyone is working as quickly as they can," said Dr. W. Jay Ramsey, the Newlink's clinical and regulatory compliance officer.

    Newlink began working with the Canadian government on Ebola five years ago.

    Ramsey told Channel 2's Erica Byfield, given the situation overseas, his team now has daily conversations with the U.S. Department of Defense, Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health.

    With so many dying from the Ebola virus, Ramsey said his team of 15 researchers are all aware of how important their work is.

    To date, they have tested the single shot vaccine on monkeys in Canada.

    Ramsey said it worked with a good percentage accuracy whether the animal had or had not been exposed to Ebola; and now they would like to test the vaccine on humans.

    "We finally have everything all lined up. It's time to execute. Clearly the crisis in Africa is raising peoples sensitivities and we are being pushed to go full speed because the government will go full speed with us," he said.

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    U.S company set to test an Ebola vaccine