Haemorrhagic Fevers

[Translate to english:] [alle Inhalte aus dem Jahresbericht BNI 2010/2011]

Just prior to this report going to press it happened again, an Ebola outbreak. It occurred surprisingly far to the west this time, in Guinea, and is caused by a new viral strain of Ebola-Zaire (EBO-Z). With a fatality rate of 70-80 per cent, it is just as deadly as the strains known from central Africa. Virologists of the Institute together with European colleagues are on site to carry out rapid and reliable diagnostics.

Entdeckung des Marburg-Virus

Marburg, Deutschland - August 1967

Im Spätsommer 1967 erkrankten Pfleger von Menschenaffen (Grünen Meerkatzen) in den Behringwerken mit hohem Fieber, inneren Blutungen und Organversagen. Fünf der 25 Patienten starben. Wenig später trat die Infektion auch an Instituten in Frankfurt und Belgrad auf, in denen ebenfalls mit Grünen Meerkatzen gearbeitet wurde.


An Ebola patient in Hamburg

On August 27, 2014, a special aircraft arrived at Hamburg airport, carrying an Ebola patient from Sierra Leone to be treated at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE). The patient’s samples were closely followed for viral load and infectivity by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and by viral cultures in Vero cells, respectively.


Genetic trace of the Ebola epidemic

As the EMLabs performed diagnostics from the beginning of the Ebola outbreak, we collected patient samples at various sites throughout the epidemic.


Origin of the Ebola epidemic

In March 2014, an outbreak of a febrile illness with vomiting, severe diarrhoea, and high fatality was reported to the World Health Organisation (WHO) from Guinea, West Africa. Virological examination indicated that it was an Ebola outbreak.


Molecular diagnosis of Lassa fever in Nigeria

Presumably more than a thousand people in Nigeria die from Lassa fever each year. There had been no laboratories there for diagnosing the infection, and disease symptoms initially cannot be separated from those of many other tropical diseases.


Deadly Marburg fever from caving tourism in Uganda

A 41-year-old woman from the Netherlands became ill with fever four days after returning from holidays in east Africa. The illness was initially diagnosed as malaria. Full organ failure developed within a few days acompanied by generalised haemorrhages, and despite most modern intensive care, the patient died of cerebral oedema.


X-ray Crystallography of Lassa Nucleoprotein

Haemorrhagic Lassa fever occurs if Lassa viruses can replicate very rapidly in the human body. To this end, a virus protein called nucleoprotein is of great importance.



Dr. Jessica Tiedke

Dr. Eleonora Schönherr

Public Relations

Tel.: +49 40 42818-264

Fax: +49 40 42818-265

E-Mail: presse@bnitm.de