There were some amazing pharmaceutical breakthroughs in 2014, from increasing longevity to a possible cure for Ebola. Read on to find out more about these remarkable findings.
It’s all about the animals!
A study released at the beginning of 2014 by the AIDS Research Center at Rockefeller University, showed that monkeys who had received regular antiretroviral drugs injections were 100% protected from developing AIDS. Work is under way to replicate this effect in humans.
Towards the end of the year, scientists were able to compare the genomes of the bowhead whale with that of other animals, allowing them to identify the various markers that enable the magnificent creatures to have a long life – it is thought that this information could be used to understand how humans can increase their own life spans.
Cures and Vaccines
In November, a team of scientists from Germany presented research that appears to have identified the fault with a protein called Ras. It is understood that when this protein malfunctions, it encourages cells to grow, in turn causing cancer. The scientists believe that by blocking the protein that carries Ras they can prevent cancer from occurring in the first place.
Ebola has been on many minds this last year and for good reason; the haemorrhagic fever killed more than 5000 people. Towards the end of the year, researchers undertook a Phase 1 trial of a new Ebola vaccine and the results so far have been promising. All of the adults who were injected have developed the antibodies that are needed to fight off the virus. This could eventually lead to a cure for Ebola.