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Swine Flu Vax Production

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 1:17 am    Post subject: Swine Flu Vax Production Reply with quote

Novartis said Friday it was making faster than expected progress on the production of a vaccine against swine flu and said 30 governments had already requested vaccine ingredient against the virus.

'Novartis has successfully completed the production of the first batch of influenza A(H1N1) vaccine, weeks ahead of expectations,' the company said in a statement, referring to the virus by its technical name.

The first batch would be used for pre-clinical evaluation and testing and was also being considered for use in clinical trials, Novartis said.

It plans to start clinical trials in July and said it expected licencing in the autumn of 2009.

Novartis said a US Department of Health and Human Service`s $289 million order in May 2009 remained 'the largest of the US government`s commitments to influenza A(H1N1) vaccine ingredients.'

Baxter International Inc. said it is in "full scale" production of a vaccine for the H1N1 virus, known as swine flu, and anticipates the first commercially available dosages to be ready in early July.

Baxter is believed to be a leader in cell-based technology, which allows the company to cut production times roughly in half compared with the older process that involves processing by hand millions of chicken eggs.

The cell-based method can generate yields in about 13 weeks, compared with 24 weeks in egg-based manufacturing, Baxter said.

GlaxoSmithKline said Thursday after the World Health Organization declared a global flu epidemic that it would be ready within weeks to begin large-scale vaccine production.

Sanofi-Aventis also said it had started working on its own version.
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