Combating Ebola - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Combating Ebola

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Work being done at the Fontaine Research Park in Charlottesville, Virginia could change the way we deal with the Ebola virus.

"With this particular mechanism we don't have a cure yet, but that's often how the search for a cure begins."

Dr. Lukas Tamm is spear-heading research that takes a deeper look into how Ebola fuses with cells in the body...and by learning its movements they could come up with drugs that could have save people who come in contact with the disease.

"It looks a little bit like an extended hand or a long loop and then we found in our lab that this hand makes a fist. Once it makes that fist it can punch its way into the cell."

Dr. Tamm says that the disease has been around since 1976, and there have been several outbreaks since then.

"It surfaced first also in Africa but each time each of those outbreaks was contained again. This is the largest one of those since 1976, but they eventually subsided again."

He hopes that with the research being done at UVA, they will help to find a cure or a way to treat the disease.

"If we don't have a treatment for it and if it got out of hand then it would be scary indeed."

Until then they will continue working in the lab to learn more about this deadly virus.

They don't work with any live viruses at UVA, so there's no threat for them while they are conducting their research. But they do hope to turn this virus around and come up with a cure soon...since at this point there isn't one.
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