Ebola update: Liberia reaches out for exhausted experimental dru - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Ebola update: Liberia reaches out for exhausted experimental drug

(WTVM) -

The Liberian government is working to get their hands on the experimental Ebola drug ZMapp, but the company says the supply has been exhausted.

The US government confirms they put Liberian officials in contact with Mapp Biopharmaceutical, Inc., makers of ZMapp. It is not clear how much of the drug would be sent to Liberia. So far the drug has only been given to two US missionaries and a Spanish priest. 

The US missionaries has reported some improvement, but the Spanish priest, 75-year-old Father Miguel Pajares, has died from the virus. Pajares was infected in Liberia, and airlifted to Carlos the Third hospital in Madrid where he was quarantined.  

Before the drug was given to the missionaries, it had only been tested on monkeys. It has not received approval yet, and the use of it may come under legal exception for extraordinary circumstances. Still, the company says they only had a limited supply of the drug.

Meanwhile, the death toll in West Africa continues to rise as health officials around the world try to battle the deadly outbreak.

The World Health Organization reports more than 1,000 are now dead with even more possibly infected. The United Nations Health Agency says 1,013 people have now died from the Ebola outbreak.

The outbreak has hit Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and possibly even Nigeria. The World Health Organization's tally of the outbreak includes numbers through Aug. 9. By that time, 52 more people had died, and 69 additional people had been infected.

Officials have on record that more than 1,800 people are suspected to have the virus or have been confirmed to have it. Right now, officials around the world are scrambling to get their hands on the experimental ZMapp drug used to treat the virus.

The outbreak was first identified in Guinea back in march, but officials believe the outbreak began months before.

Copyright 2014 WTVM. All rights reserved.

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