Four vaccines being developed in the US against the Ebola virus are stuck in various stages and for various reasons, money being the most prominent one.

The most promising one is stuck in safety testing for the simple reason there is no money for a vaccine that has no market. Most big pharmaceuticals do not like to sink assets into developing any drug with low potential. That leaves the playing ground largely to the government and small, niche companies.

“I don’t see why anybody except the U.S. government would get involved in developing these kinds of countermeasures,” said Dr Sina Bavari of the US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) in Frederick, Maryland. “There is no market in it.”

As nations across the world step up vigil at airports and entry points, Ebola has claimed the life of yet another doctor, this time in Sierra Leone. Dr Sheik Humarr Khan was overseeing Ebola treatment at Kenema Government Hospital, about 185 miles east of Sierra Leone’s capital city, Freetown.

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