Ebola Outbreak in West Africa; Is Selenium Involved?


One of the current international public health emergencies is the outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD), requiring extraordinary response. The current outbreak in West Africa is the most dangerous since Ebola was first discovered on 26 August 1976. Till January 6th 2015, It resulted in 13,387 laboratory confirmed human cases and 8274 deaths. Ebola virus has 5 strains, 4 are pathogenic in humans while the 5th strain Ebola reston strain is not. The current outbreak is caused by Ebola most pathogenic strain, Ebola Zaire strain whose genome differs from that of Reston Ebola virus strain, by the existence of several open reading frames containing large numbers of UGA codons. These codons act as stop codons and in addition they may encode for Selenocysteine, the 21st aminoacid, which is essential for the formation of Selenoproteins. Selenoproteins are integral to the metabolism and have been linked to the progression of certain viral diseases. In this review, we discuss the relation between Selenium and the progression of the current EVD in Africa supported by geographical distribution of Se and genetic evidence.

DOI: 10.1007/s10989-015-9491-7

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@article{AbdElMoemen2015EbolaOI, title={Ebola Outbreak in West Africa; Is Selenium Involved?}, author={Nouran Abd-ElMoemen and Ahmed Menshawy and Ahmed Negida and Marwa Alaa El-Din and Ahmed Kamel and Alaa Ehab Farouk}, journal={International Journal of Peptide Research and Therapeutics}, year={2015}, volume={22}, pages={135-141} }