NEW IBERIA, LOUISIANA — Scientists claim that promising research into an ebola vaccination for apes could be stymied by U.S. regulations concerning animal welfare.

The research, published last week in the journal Scientific Reports, concerns the results of an ebola vaccination trial in chimpanzees. During the experiment, apes were administered an oral vaccine for the disease, reported Phy.org, citing the study. The chimpanzees incurred no serious health problems as a result of the vaccine.

The vaccine is unlikely to progress to the level where it can be used to to immunize wild apes because of new reforms to the U.S. law that prohibit experiments on captive animals from endangered species, reported Phys.org, citing the researchers.

Ebola is a lethal disease that affects both humans and other species. It is especially harmful to wild apes. According to a 2006 study published in the journal Science, the disease killed 5000 gorillas in the Republic of Congo in 2002 and 2003.

The trial was conducted on chimpanzees at the New Iberia Research Center in the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
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