(CIDRAP News) European countries' plans for coping with an influenza pandemic are generally good but have a number of gaps, including a lack of detail on distribution of drugs and supplies, according to an analysis published last week by The Lancet.
(CIDRAP News) Australian officials who coordinated an exercise Jun 7 and 8 on pandemic influenza response among Asia-Pacific nations called the drill a success, according to an Agence France-Presse (AFP) story today.
(CIDRAP News) – An influenza pandemic would reduce the gross domestic products of the world's major economies by amounts ranging from 9% in China to 3% in Canada, according to a recent report by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARE).
(CIDRAP News) Novartis, the Swiss-based drug manufacturer, today announced plans to build what it says will be the first US plant to make cell-culture-based influenza vaccines.
The facility will be built in Holly Springs, N.C., at a total cost of about $600 million, the company said in a news release. It will be able to produce about 50 million doses of seasonal trivalent (three-strain) flu vaccine annually.
(CIDRAP News) Sanofi Pasteur today announced the start of the first clinical trial of an H7N1 influenza vaccine, intended to guard against the threat of a pandemic caused by H7 strains of avian influenza.
Current concern about a flu pandemic focuses mainly on the H5N1 avian flu virus, which has infected at least 247 people and killed 144. But H7 avian flu viruses have caused a number of mild illness cases and one death in the past 3 years.
(CIDRAP News) – A committee that reviews medical product applications for the European Union (EU) yesterday recommended approval of a cell-based seasonal influenza vaccine made by Novartis, improving the company's chance of becoming the first to market a flu vaccine grown in cell culture instead of in eggs.
(CIDRAP News) – The European Union (EU) has approved Novartis's seasonal influenza vaccine, Optaflu, putting the Swiss company in a position to become the first to market a flu vaccine grown in cell culture rather than eggs.
TORONTO (CIDRAP News) The continuing debate over developing countries' ability to afford pandemic-influenza vaccines has produced a disturbing complication: the possibility that Indonesia and other countries affected by H5N1 avian flu will assert legal ownership of the viral isolates on which the vaccines would be based.
Editor's note: This is the third in a seven-part series investigating the prospects for development of vaccines to head off the threat of an influenza pandemic posed by the H5N1 avian influenza virus. The series puts promising advances in vaccine technology in perspective by illuminating the formidable barriers to producing large amounts of an effective and widely usable vaccine in a short time frame.