News & Perspective

Oct 12, 2004

Oct 12, 2004

CDC, Aventis announce allocation plan for flu vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – To cope with the loss of nearly half of the nation's influenza vaccine supply, federal health officials and Aventis Pasteur announced plans today to distribute Aventis's 22.4 million remaining doses to those who need them the most.

Oct 11, 2004

Oct 11, 2004

Topical cidofovir shows promise in treating vaccinia-infected mice

(CIDRAP News) – The antiviral drug cidofovir is one of very few agents used to treat serious side effects of smallpox vaccination. In a recent study, a topical form of cidofovir worked better than an intravenous formulation to protect mice from the effects of vaccinia, the smallpox vaccine virus.

Oct 09, 2004

Oct 09, 2004

Salvage of Chiron flu vaccine unlikely

(CIDRAP News) – Lester Crawford, acting director of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), appearing before the House Committee on Government Reform yesterday, said he was pessimistic about the possiblility that any of the 48 million doses of influenza vaccine expected in the United States from Chiron Corp. can be salvaged for use this flu season, according to new service reports.

Oct 09, 2004

Avian flu task force formed, disease returns to Indonesia

(CIDRAP News) – Southeast Asian nations have agreed to band together to coordinate response to the deadly avian influenza outbreak that has caused 31 human deaths and widespread poultry losses.

Oct 06, 2004

Oct 06, 2004

Lassa fever case found in New Jersey

(CIDRAP News) – The first US case of Lassa fever since 1989 is a reminder that physicians need to consider exotic diseases when making diagnoses, noted the Oct 1 edition of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).

Oct 05, 2004

Oct 05, 2004

Half of US flu vaccine supply suddenly not available

(CIDRAP News) – The vaccine supply for the soon-to-begin influenza season is suddenly in serious condition with news that Chiron Corp., maker of about half the US supply, has been ordered to stop production by British health authorities and will not be shipping its doses.

Oct 04, 2004

Oct 04, 2004

Further contracts awarded for weakened smallpox vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – Two vaccine companies have received contracts estimated at about $200 million to produce a modified smallpox vaccine for the US government.

Acambis, based in Cambridge, UK, and Cambridge, Mass., and Denmark's Bavarian Nordic both won contracts on Sep 30 to continue research on a smallpox vaccine made with a modified version of the currently used live vaccinia (Dryvax) vaccine, news services reported.

Oct 04, 2004

Oct 04, 2004

Another avian flu death in Thailand

(CIDRAP News) – A young girl who died Sunday night is Thailand's 11th avian influenza victim, a health ministry spokeswoman told news services on Monday.

The girl's H5N1 infection had just been confirmed on Sunday. She was from the northern Thai province of Phetchabun and had been in the hospital for about a week, Reuters news reported. Reports put her age at 8 or 9 years old.

Oct 01, 2004

Oct 01, 2004

Canadian company to develop cell-cultured flu vaccine

(CIDRAP News) – The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a $9.5 million grant to a Canadian firm that aims to develop an influenza vaccine that doesn't rely on eggs.

Oct 01, 2004

California bans mercury-containing vaccines for pregnant women, kids

(CIDRAP News) – Pregnant women and children younger than 3 in California will soon no longer receive vaccines containing more than a trace of mercury, under a law approved this week.

Vaccines for those groups will contain no more than a trace of thimerosal (termed thimerosal-free in the industry)—a preservative in some vaccines that contains ethyl mercury. The law takes effect in July 2006, according to news services.

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