In the recent development of Ebola, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) today reported six more cases in Beni, the current epicenter of the outbreak, and the World Health Organization (WHO) immunization advisory group said there was still insufficient evidence to support it Ebola vaccine recommendation for pregnant women
Officials investigate 47 suspected cases
The 6 new diseases in Beni, which are a steady stream of cases from the region, result in a total of 257 cases, including 222 confirmed and 35 likely infections  Two more deaths were reported, one from Beni and the other from Butembo, the city that continues to report cases and deaths. To date, 1
Another 47 Ebola cases are being investigated.
The number of people immunized with the ring vaccination campaign remains at 22,811 so far, about half of them in Beni.
In another response development, the DRC Ministry of Health said the capacity of the Ebola treatment center in Mangina, the previous hot spot outbreak, had been reduced by 16 beds, while in Beni it was increased to 60 beds, due to the high volume suspicious and confirmed cases in this health zone to ensure the best quality of care
Vaccine data for pregnant women are missing  The Ebola vaccine was among the topics discussed by the WHO Strategic Expert Group on immunization at its Geneva meeting.
At a media telegraph today, the group's chairman, Alejandro Cravioto, MD, with the National Autonomous University of Mexico, said the group is studying data on the use of Ebola vaccine in pregnant women. The VSV-EBOV vaccine contains live virus, which is not normally recommended for use in pregnant women. He said health authorities would follow a small number of women who did not know they were pregnant when they received the VSV EBOV vaccine and some who were inadvertently vaccinated.
Joachim Hombach, PhD, MPH, Secretary of SAGE and Senior The risk-benefit analysis suggests that the risk of contracting Ebola for unvaccinated individuals – including pregnant women – in environments where ring vaccinations are performed be very low.
In the coming months, health officials hope to get more information from detailed research on pregnant women who have been vaccinated, officials said, adding that there is not enough evidence for SAGE to reach a definitive conclusion. They added that local ethics committees could pick up the topic depending on the local situation.
Consultants Provide Role for Second Vaccine
During their meeting this week, SAGE members also heard status reports on several other Ebola vaccines in the development pipeline.
Cravioto said the only other vaccine that the group will use in the near future is the Prime Boost regimen, which combines a priming dose of Johnson Adovence vector Ad26.ZEBOV vaccine & Johnson and a booster vaccine MVA-BN-Filo from Bavarian Nordic. He said the consultants from SAGE heard a presentation on the Phase 2 results for the vaccine.
In recent years, experts have said they see roles for different Ebola vaccine formulations. For example, VSV-EBOV has been useful in outbreaks because it induces rapid protection, but researchers are researching vaccines that provide long-term protection for preventative vaccination campaigns, including the protection of health workers in outbreak zones.
The vaccines in the Johnson & Johnson regimen are genetically modified so that they can not replicate, which could offer a way for health officials to more comfortably recommend to pregnant women.
Cravioto said it was up to the company to decide the next steps for the clinical trial, but the group suggested including pregnant women.
26. October DRC Update
26. October WHO SAGE Telebriefing audio file