NETEC Resource Library

Ebola in Zaire, 1976: The Past as Prologue

Item

Click for External Resource*


*The link above may share a zip file (.zip) hosted on repository.netecweb.org. Zip files will download automatically.
*All other links are external and will open in a new window. If you click an external link, you are leaving the NETEC site, and we do not maintain, review, or endorse these materials. See our terms of use.


Item Type

Video

Terms of Use

By accessing these materials you are agreeing to our terms of use, which may be found here: Terms of Use.

Share this page:

Was this resource helpful?


Title

Ebola in Zaire, 1976: The Past as Prologue

Subject

Description

Welcome to “We Were There,” a quarterly lecture series featuring past and present CDC researchers as they share their personal perspectives on historically important, CDC-led epidemiologic and laboratory investigations. This series will provide insight into the rich past of CDC and give the audience a chance to hear first-hand accounts from the responders.

In late summer of 1976, patients began presenting at a rural hospital in northwest Democratic Republic of Congo (then referred to as Zaire) with fever, headache, abdominal pain and severe bleeding. Malaria, severe typhoid, or yellow fever were initially suspected, but then ruled out. As case fatality rates rose to 80%, so did the uncertainty of the cause of this hemorrhagic disease.

Samples were first sent to Belgium, then to high-containment labs in England and Atlanta via Paris. Initially, the samples yielded alarming images of a filovirus resembling Marburg, but serology testing at the CDC showed a new virus, later named Ebola. By October, a strict quarantine resulted in the interruption of the disease and the outbreak subsided. Even more than four decades later, Ebola continues to reemerge – with devastating impact.

Creator

Date

2019-09-05

Collection