Evaluation of immune globulin and recombinant interferon-alpha2b for treatment of experimental Ebola virus infections

J Infect Dis. 1999 Feb;179 Suppl 1:S224-34. doi: 10.1086/514310.


A passive immunization strategy for treating Ebola virus infections was evaluated using BALB/ c mice, strain 13 guinea pigs, and cynomolgus monkeys. Guinea pigs were completely protected by injection of hyperimmune equine IgG when treatment was initiated early but not after viremia had developed. In contrast, mice were incompletely protected even when treatment was initiated on day 0, the day of virus inoculation. In monkeys treated with one dose of IgG on day 0, onset of illness and viremia was delayed, but all treated animals died. A second dose of IgG on day 5 had no additional beneficial effect. Pretreatment of monkeys delayed onset of viremia and delayed death several additional days. Interferon-alpha2b (2 x 10(7) IU/kg/day) had a similar effect in monkeys, delaying viremia and death by only several days. Effective treatment of Ebola infections may require a combination of drugs that inhibit viral replication in monocyte/macrophage-like cells while reversing the pathologic effects (e.g., coagulopathy) consequent to this replication.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Antibodies, Viral / therapeutic use*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Ebolavirus / immunology*
  • Ebolavirus / isolation & purification
  • Ebolavirus / ultrastructure
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola / immunology
  • Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola / therapy*
  • Hemorrhagic Fever, Ebola / virology
  • Horses
  • Humans
  • Immunization, Passive
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood
  • Immunoglobulin G / therapeutic use
  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha / therapeutic use*
  • Lymph Nodes / immunology
  • Lymph Nodes / virology
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Time Factors
  • Viremia / immunology
  • Viremia / therapy


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Interferon alpha-2
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Recombinant Proteins