Successful Phase 1 trials of Ebola Vaccine

My reaction was “tell me something I don’t know already” when I read that phase 1 trials of an Ebola vaccine at the National Institutes of Health have shown that it is safe.

My dad works on the NIH campus and he told me about the trial weeks ago. The results were recently published. Trials aiming to determine if the vaccine is effective are tentatively scheduled to start in January (this means it will be given to health care workers in Liberia).

I bring this up not only because it is wonderful and important news, but to grind an old ax.

In October Francis Collins (director of the NIH) said they would have had a proven vaccine by then if it weren’t for budget cuts. The vaccine had been synthesized but not tested. The fact that there are very promising published results a month and a half after he made the claim, makes his claim extremely convincing. The progress since then involves no Eureka moment. It is based on finding a few million dollars by cutting spending on research on diseases which were more common than Ebola long long ago in July.

Something to tell your Fox News watching uncle who says the US Federal Government never does anything useful and is a waste of money. Also an NIH budget which might have a claim to compete with tax subsidies for owners of race horses (I wish I were joking)

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