The Ebola Virus

By: Sienna Snowden

Symptoms

Chills, dehydration, fatigue, fever, loss of appetite, malaise, sweating, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, vomiting blood, sore throat, coughing up blood, eye redness, headache, mental confusion, red spots on skin, pain in the abdomen, chest, joints, or muscles.


What does it do to the immune system

The Ebola virus targets the first line of defense immune cells, including the dendritic cell. Destroying the dendritic cell causes the signals that say there is an infection on their surfaces to not activate. The virus also attacks the T lymphocytes so they can’t destroy the virus. After destroying the T lymphocytes the virus starts to replicate immediately and quickly. Ebola's proteins, called VP24, attach themselves and blocks the transport protein on the immune cells surface.

How does Ebola Replicate

Ebola Virus does not replicate through any kind of cell division; rather, they use a combination of host and virally encoded enzymes, alongside host cell structures, to produce multiple copies of viruses. These then self-assemble into viral macromolecular structures in the host cell. The virus completes a set of steps when infecting each individual cell. This virus is harmless until it actually starts replicating. It is a lysogenic cycle, but there is a trigger, and it enters the lytic cycle. ·

Viral genome gets incorporated into specific sites of host cell chromosome.

Viral genome replicates every time host nucleus divides.

Host cell remains viable as long as the viral genome remains in this “temperate” state.

Treatment

There is currently no vaccine for this Virus, but there are a few things that can help. Here are their names and what they do-

  • Intravenous fluids- to help balance electrolytes.

  • Treatment includes an experimental serum that destroys infected cells.

  • Patients diagnosed with Ebola virus disease are placed in isolation in intensive care, where their blood oxygen levels and blood pressure are maintained at the right level and their body organs supported.



Causes

Ebola, is a rare and deadly disease caused by infection with one of the Ebola

virus species. Ebola can cause disease in humans and nonhuman primates (monkeys, gorillas, and chimpanzees). Ebola is caused by infection with a virus of the family Filoviridae, genus Ebolavirus.


Prevention

There are 3 steps in how to prevent Ebola

1. Avoid contact with blood and any body fluids

2. Practice careful hand hygiene, including washing hands with soap and water or an alcohol- based sanitizer

3. Refrain from engaging in burial rituals that involve handling the body who died from Ebola.