FDA chooses three different strains for vaccines for new flu season

August 7, 2008

Six vaccines, reflecting three new strains of the influenza virus, will do battle with the flu during the 2008-2009 season.

Six vaccines, reflecting three new strains of the influenza virus, will do battle with the flu during the 2008-2009 season, reported the Food and Drug Administration. FDA said that based on the recommendations of its experts, it has changed all three strains this year. This is unprecedented as hitherto it has changed only one or two strains. Supplying the six vaccines are CSL, Afluria; GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals, Fluarix; ID Biomedical Corporation of Quebec, FluLaval: MedImmune Vaccines, FluMist; Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, Fluvirin; and Sanofi Pasteur, Fluzone. Some of these manufacturers have issued press releases about their supply plans. For instance, Sanofi Pasteur said it has started shipping the first 1.3 million doses of its vaccine, while MedImmune said it plans to produce 12 million doses of its FluMist this year, with distribution not only to doctors' offices and clinics but also to select retail pharmacies and supermarkets.

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