By Dr. Brian McDonough
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — There have been a number of questions about the so-called miracle serum being used against the Ebola virus.
The experimental drug is known as ZMapp.
It’s never been tried before in human beings prior to these recent cases, but it had shown promise in experiments with monkeys.
The medicine is called a three-mouse monoclonal antibody. That means that mice were exposed to fragments of the Ebola virus.
Antibodies generated within the mice’s blood were then taken to create the medicine. What the medicine does is prevent the virus from entering and infecting new cells.
Now, there is controversy over this. For instance, Doctors Without Borders is saying they don’t think it should be used for humans until it has gone though a clinical trial process for safety. Others are saying we need it, and we need it now.