Amid an outbreak of Marburg haemorrhagic fever in Equatorial Guinea that has claimed nine lives, the UN health agency has announced an emergency meeting of the Marburg virus vaccine consortium.
The Marburg virus, a filovirus that shares similarities with Ebola, can cause severe fever, organ failure, and hemorrhaging. The virus has no approved vaccines or antiviral treatments, but potential treatments, including drug therapies, immune therapies, blood products, and early vaccines, are under review.
The virus is transmitted through contact with bodily fluids and primates, including humans. The natural host of the virus is the African fruit bat, which carries it without symptoms. The current outbreak prompted a lockdown of over 4,000 people, and additional tests are being conducted to identify and manage new cases.