The deadly outbreak of West Nile virus has claimed 62 lives so far this year in Texas. But now there is a possible cure in the works.
Where 1,400 have been infected with the mosquito-borne illness in Texas alone, one scientist believes he may be getting closer to finding a cure by using the latest in biomedical technology.
Dr. Manjunath Swamy at the Texas Tech Health Sciences Center says he and his team have successfully killed the virus in mice by injecting microscopic strands, known as siRNA, into the bloodstream of rodents. But, proving it will work on humans can take years.
"I was feeling sick the whole day because it is something we cannot offer to humans," said Swamy. "If it were something in my ability, I would give it to her today."
Swamy and his team are preparing to seek funding for permission to eventually begin human trials.
Even if all goes well, they say they are still probably five years away from an approved cure.