News

Obama administration setting up group on experimental Ebola drugs

Obama administration setting up group on experimental Ebola drugs

OUTBREAK: In this photo provided by the Spanish Defense Ministry, aid workers and doctors transfer Miguel Pajares, a Spanish priest who was infected with the Ebola virus while working in Liberia, from a plane to an ambulance as he leaves the Torrejon de Ardoz military airbase, near Madrid, Spain, Thursday, Aug. 7. Pajares was in stable condition at a Madrid hospital on Thursday after being evacuated from Liberia, health officials said. Photo: Associated Press

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration is forming a special Ebola working group to consider setting policy for the potential use of experimental drugs to help the hundreds infected by the deadly disease in Africa, an official said on Thursday.

The group will include scientists and other officials from such government health agencies as the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Fauci said in an interview he was unsure when the group would first meet or who would be represented, but added: “I’m sure they’ll tap people from NIAID with competence in clinical trials.”

The group was being formed under Dr. Nicole Lurie, the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the Department of Health and Human Services, an administration official said.

Expertise in clinical trials, in which patients receive an experimental drug under scientifically rigorous conditions, is crucial, Fauci said.

“You need to balance compassion with the need to figure out if something actually works,” he said, referring to the experimental Ebola drug ZMapp, from Mapp Biopharmaceutical, which was given to two American aid workers before they were airlifted from Liberia to Emory University Hospital.

(Reporting by David Morgan and Sharon Begley; editing by Michele Gershberg and G Crosse)

Recent Headlines

11 hours ago in Music

Lady Antebellum to host televised ACM Honors show

ladyantebellum839354649795

Grammy-winning country group Lady Antebellum will host the 10th annual ACM Honors show, which will be televised for the first time.

12 hours ago in Entertainment

Judge rules Bill Cosby must stand trial on sexual assault charges

15-overlay-11

A Pennsylvania judge ordered entertainer Bill Cosby to stand trial on sexual assault charges over allegations that he drugged and assaulted a woman in 2004.

13 hours ago in Entertainment

Video gaming returns to TV with new league

gamingREUTERS

Competitive video gaming returns to TV with the launch of a 10-week gaming league that will be broadcast on TBS.

14 hours ago in Entertainment

Changes are coming to Twitter

twitterREUTERS

User names and attachments - including photos and videos - will no longer count towards the length of a tweet, but the 140-character limit will stay.

14 hours ago in Entertainment

‘Pink Panther’ star Burt Kwouk dies at 85

burtkwoukREUTERS

He also starred in numerous films, among them three James Bond movies including "Goldfinger."