OTTAWA, Ontario — The Canadian government said that it will start shipping its experimental Ebola vaccine to the World Health Organization on Monday for possible use in the West African countries hardest hit by the outbreak.

The government said in a news release Saturday that the Public Health Agency of Canada is supplying the vaccine to the U.N. agency in Geneva. The WHO is the international coordinating body for battling the Ebola outbreak which has killed more than 4,500 people in West Africa.

The news release said Canada will send 800 vials of its experimental vaccine in three separate shipments.

The WHO will consult with its partners, including health authorities from the affected countries, to determine how best to distribute and use the vaccine, taking into consideration concerns about using an experimental vaccine on people.

Canada announced last month that clinical trials had started in the U.S. on the Canadian-made Ebola vaccine, with results expected in December.

"This vaccine, the product of many years of scientific research and innovation, could be an important tool in curbing the outbreak," said Dr. Gregory Taylor of Canada's Public Health Agency. "We will continue to work closely with the WHO to address some of the ethical and logistical issues around using this experimental vaccine in the fight against Ebola."

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