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FDA approves first Ebola vaccine

Christian Fernsby |
The Food and Drug Administration announced it has approved an Ebola vaccine developed by Merck, making it the first for the deadly disease approved in the United States.

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The vaccine, Ervebo, protects against Zaire ebolaviruses, the species of the virus that has been the most common cause of Ebola outbreaks. Ebola Zaire is the virus responsible for the current long-running outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The FDA’s decision follows similar action taken earlier by the European Commission, which licensed the vaccine on Nov. 11.

“Ebola virus disease is a rare but severe and often deadly disease that knows no borders,” Dr. Peter Marks, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said in a statement. “Vaccination is essential to help prevent outbreaks and to stop the Ebola virus from spreading when outbreaks do occur.”


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