AN IRISH company could be at the helm of finding a treatment for the deadly Ebola virus.
Hemanua Limited’s new product was announced this morning, in conjunction with the Irish Blood Transfusion Service.
The news comes as the death toll of the current epidemic is nearing 6,000.
Most of the deaths have been in West Africa, where the outbreak began, but four have died outside of the region.
In Britain, there has been one confirmed case of the virus, with the person recovering, while there has been none in Ireland.
Hemanua’s ProBlood CP product could be the light at the end of the tunnel.
It enables the harvesting and transfusion of convalescent plasma (CP) without electricity, driven only by gravity.
The advantage here is that this system could be more accessible in rural regions in West Africa.
The medical and scientific director of the Irish Blood Transfusion Service is Dr William Murphy.
“Phase 1 test results on the ProBlood CP were very encouraging and the device provides a very real opportunity for clinicians in the field to provide convalescent plasma to the Ebola patients in their care easily and rapidly, and without the need for expensive and complex plasmapheresis equipment,” he said.
Hemanua Limited is a new start-up in Ireland, only operational since early 2014.
If the results of the possible Ebola treatment continues to prove promising, the company, which is based in University College Dublin, will focus on designing and manufacturing a wide range of gravity-driven blood separation technologies.