Japan ready to offer flu drug for Ebola treatment

TOKYO (AP) — Japan says it is ready to provide a Japanese-developed anti-influenza drug as potential treatment to fight the rapidly expanding Ebola outbreak.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Monday that Japan can offer the anti-influenza tablet favipiravir, developed by a subsidiary of Fujifilm Holdings Corp., any time at the request of the World Health Organization. The drug, developed by a Fujifilm subsidiary Toyama Chemical Co., was approved by the Japanese health ministry in March.

Fujifilm said it has favipiravir stock for more than 20,000 patients. The company is also in talks with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on clinical testing of the drug in treating Ebola.

Ebola has killed more than 1,400 people in West Africa in the latest outbreak.

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