ID Admin: October 2006 Archives

New virus evades current poultry immunization measures

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bird flu vaccineA new strain of vaccine-resistant H5N1 bird flu virus has emerged in China and is spreading through southeast Asia, Hong Kong researchers report.

"The implications are that current control measures are ineffective with dealing with the evolutionary changes that H5N1 undergoes," warned Dr. Yi Guan, director of the State Key Laboratory of Emerging Diseases at the University of Hong Kong and lead author of a report in this week's issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The new strain has become dominant throughout the region, replacing other variants of the virus, the report said.

Uganda: Country Begins Mother-to-Child Aids Vaccine Trials

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Breast feedingUgandan and American Aids researchers have begun the first ever clinical trial of a vaccine to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV through breast-feeding which, if successful, could prevent at least 25,000 infections in new-borns in East Africa alone.

In the first phase of the trials the researchers will be testing whether the vaccine, formally known as ALVAC-HIV, is safe for use in children, following which they will study whether it can stop the transmission of the Aids virus to a suckling baby through breastmilk. Preliminary results are expected in mid-2007.

According to the UNAids, breast-feeding by HIV-positive mothers accounts for more than a third of all infections in new-borns, translating to about 1,800 children each day around the world. In Uganda alone, at least 8,000 of the country's 22,000 infections in children each year occur as a result of breast-feeding.

Indian scientist develops solar vaccine cooler

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SolarChill fridgesNew Delhi, Oct 31. (PTI): Resurgence of polio in parts of India could be attributed to faulty storage of vaccines, but an Indian scientist has invented a solar vaccine cooler for use in rural parts where electricity is in short supply.

SolarChill, a vaccine cooler developed by Rajendra Shende under the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), promises to be viable eco-friendly solution, which replaces the lead batteries and the ozone depleting chloro-fluro-carbons used in conventional refrigerators.

Paris-based Shende, the head of UNEP's OzonAction Branch, is in the capital to deliver two units of SolarChill to its first Indian customer -- President A P J Abdul Kalam, who proposes to intall them at the clinic in the Rashtrapati Bhavan complex.

Drug-Resistant Staph Vaccine in Works

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MRSA bacteriaScientists are working on a vaccine against drug-resistant staph bacteria such as MRSA.

MRSA is methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. It resists treatment with many antibiotics.

MRSA infections are rising worldwide. It often infects the skin but can also infect the blood, lungs, urinary tract, and other parts of the body.

University of Chicago scientists are targeting staph bacteria -- including MRSA -- with an experimental vaccine.

The dangers of vaccination

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vaccine shotsby AUDREY ALFSON, Lacrosse Tribune

Help me understand: It’s OK to talk about drug studies that show thousands (700,000) are sent to the emergency room yearly for drug reactions to “common” over-the-counter and prescription drugs (Tribune Oct. 18). And it’s OK to highlight the dangers of the all- too-common ADHD drugs that send thousands to the ER (Tribune, spring 2006). Authors of the studies admit that thousands die from said drugs and that the numbers are probably higher because of lack of reporting.

Why is it, therefore, not OK to put vaccinations in the same category? Vaccinations, like all drugs, can have side effects (probably underreported); people can end up in the hospital; people can die. Instead we are given a warm fuzzy article in the Tribune with quotes from a local doctor telling us there is nothing to worry about.

Faulkner urges more checks on flu vaccine related illness

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influenza fluAUSTRALIA - Labor Senator John Faulkner wants more to be done to check if parliamentary staff have become sick after being given a flu vaccination.

The head of the Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS), Hilary Penfold, says Comcare has accepted that a staff member's illness was associated with being given the vaccine in 2005.

Ms Penfold says there is at least one other case she is aware of that has been linked to that round of vaccinations.

Research targets AIDS, chlamydia vaccines

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vacccine researchEven as Mid-South health providers gear up to begin vaccinating against one sexually transmitted disease, the human papillomavirus (HPV), Memphis researchers are working on vaccines against two more.

At St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Drs. Karen Slobod and Julia Hurwitz have been working for more than a decade on a vaccine to protect against the AIDS virus. Although medications have helped transform AIDS from a rapidly fatal to a chronic disease, there is still no vaccine or cure.

Human testing with the experimental vaccine began in the late 1990s. In a statement, Dr. Elaine Tuomanen, chairwoman of St. Jude's department of infectious disease, said a final round of safety testing is expected to begin early next year. She indicated the next step will be determined by those results along with the immune response the vaccine sparks.

bird flu(NewsTarget) While the deadly H5N1 strain of the bird flu has not yet mutated into a form easily transmittable between humans, a Harvard School of Public Health poll conducted Thursday suggests that many Americans would be left without anyone to care for them if it did.

About 24 percent of the nearly 1,700 Americans polled from Sept. 28 to Oct. 5 said they would not have anyone to take care of them if they were sick at home for seven to 10 days; 45 percent of respondents living alone said they would have no one to care for them if stricken with the disease; and 34 percent of black adults said the same thing.

KU researchers develop bio-terror vaccine

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Anthrax MoleculeAn anthrax vaccine developed by three KU researchers is in its second stage of clinical testing.

The vaccine is a stabilized liquid form of the current anthrax vaccine, which is difficult to transport and store because its temperature must remain constant. Duane Brandau, Sangeeta Joshi and Laura Peek, KU research professors, developed a stabilized liquid form of the vaccine and sent it to a laboratory that converted their vaccine to a powder form. Then the vaccine went to its first of up to four stages of clinical testing. The powder vaccine doesn’t have such specific conditons for storage, making it easier to transport. It is administered through an inhaler or a nasal spray. The current vaccine is a liquid and administered by injection.

Alzheimer's jab trial resurrected

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Research into a vaccine for Alzheimer's disease, which was stopped early on safety grounds, is to be resurrected.

It was designed to reverse the disease's progression by clearing the beta amyloid protein that causes the disease.

But the trial was halted in 2002 when 6% of patients in the second phase of the study developed brain inflammation.

Study Questions Value of Flu Shots

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influenza virusThe first article this fall which is asking a question - whether influenza vaccine is actually worth taking.

"Previous papers published by Jefferson found that the flu vaccine is only mildly effective in the population for which it is supposedly most critical, the elderly. He also concluded that there is no good science to back new American and Canadian policies of vaccinating children under the age of 2."

"Overall, Jefferson concluded, influenza vaccines have little or no effect on many influenza campaign objectives, such as hospital stay, time off work, or death from influenza and its complications."

Of course, this article wouldn't see the light unless this opinion wouldn't be opposed by another doctor. Read the article below.

Gardasil comes with questions

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One of the few vaccines to prevent a sexually transmitted disease - and the only one to possibly prevent cancer - is opening debate in homes and doctors' offices across Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.

At issue: Should preteen girls be given a shot against the human papilloma virus, or HPV? Or, are 11- and 12-year-olds too young? And if parents want the vaccine for their young daughters, as a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention committee recommends, how much detail do they need to get into?

Questions have been raised nationwide since June, when the government recommended that physicians begin immunizing girls "before the onset of sexual activity." The vaccine, Gardasil, protects against the four most common types of HPV, which are known to cause 70 percent of cervical cancers.

Study tests hepatitis B vaccine

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A second phase of clinical tests of China's hepatitis B vaccine are being carried out on 46 chronic hepatitis B patients to test the vaccine's effectiveness, said expert Wu Yuzhang.

The patients began treatment in June and will remain under close medical observation until the tests end next March, said Wu, head of the Immunology Institute of the People's Liberation Army.

The research team headed by Wu completed the first phase of clinical tests of the vaccine in June 2003. Nine months of monitoring found no safety concerns on a group of 52 healthy volunteers.

US Panel Strongly Recommends Shingles Vaccine

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MerckNEW YORK (Reuters) - Merck and Co. on Wednesday said the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has unanimously recommended that Americans aged 60 and older receive the company's Zostavax vaccine to prevent shingles.

Merck said the recommendation for its product, which won U.S. marketing approval in May and costs about $150, will encourage doctors to use it and insurers to provide coverage for it.

Clinical trials have shown Zostavax reduces the risk of developing shingles by 51% and moderates symptoms in patients who do have outbreaks.

Government rejects vaccine petition

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by Andrew Bridges, AP, 24 Oct 2006

WASHINGTON -- Federal health officials won't put new restrictions on the use of a mercury-based preservative in vaccines and other medicines, denying a petition that sought the limits because of health concerns.

A group called the Coalition for Mercury-free Drugs petitioned the Food and Drug Administration in 2004 seeking the restrictions on thimerosal, citing concerns that the preservative is linked to autism. In a reply dated Sept. 26 but made public only Tuesday, the FDA rejected the petition.

Polio afflicts a girl despite vaccination

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News about effectiveness or rather non-effectiveness of vaccines and serious adverse effects are keep on coming. I don't know what's causing it. Either it's really getting worse, or news media is starting to look into these cases. In any case, here's another report of how vaccines are "effective" and "safe".

A 1-year-old girl has been diagnosed with polio in spite of receiving 9 doses of the polio vaccine. According to an official statement, polio can be prevented by 4-10 doses of the vaccine. However, this does not hold true for this girl called Jannat.

“Earlier she used to roam around the house. Now she can't even stand properly,” Jannat's Mother, Akhbari Khatun says. Jannat was diagnosed with polio just a few days back.

According to the state health department records, Jannat has had 9 doses of the vaccine, 2 under the routine immunisation programme and 7 booster doses under the pulse polio programme.

Goverment defends meningococcal vaccine

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An eight-year-old girl has developed a rare bleeding disorder after being injected with the meningococcal vaccine.

Chelsea Ferris' mother thought she was doing the right thing by vaccinating her daughter against the deadly meningococcal bug.

But the reaction to the second vaccination was devastating.

"She had a wonderful immune system and she was a very active child, and through that now we have not such an active child and we have a child that's immune system is very wrecked and ruined," says Louise Blaire-Ferris.

Malaria vaccine may be ready by 2010

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Maputo - The first vaccine against malaria could be on the market by 2010 following trials in Mozambique, the southern African country's deputy health minister told an international conference on Tuesday.

"We think the first malaria vaccine will be available by 2010 if the tests in Manhica (north of the capital Maputo) are effective," Aida Libombo told the gathering of health professionals.

Rare paralysis in some vaccine takers

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It seems that this subdomain is turning into pure vaccine safety news digest. Unfortunately there are not so many vaccine news nowdays. Except, of course, the mass hysteria about flu vaccine for the coming winter.

So, 15 youngster are paralyzed after being vaccinated with Menactra, meningitis vaccine.

The CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a public statement yesterday through their Medwatch monitoring system saying Menactra may be associated with "a small increased risk" of Guillain-Barre Syndrome.
According to the CDC, Guillain-Barre causes loss of reflexes and temporary paralysis. Recovery usually begins within two to four weeks, although it may persist in some patients.

The whole article is below

Another article about vaccination, now about the risks for pregnant women to get some adverse effects after getting flu shots.

"..some doctors fear the expanding the season flu vaccine programme could place mothers-to-be at risk of rare but fatal side-effects of the jab."
"To introduce a vaccine without proper trials into both effectiveness and safety is irresponsible."

There's also an interesting comment to this article:

"If the NHS realised that millions of people are already burdend with toxins that affect their immune systems, they would be more interested in helping educate people to that effect and helping them remove the toxins not adding to them!! Vaccinations have very toxic additives and 'fillers' that are sometimes beyond belief, such as mercury for example and so many children are born with inherited heavy metal body burden from their parents' dental amalgam restorations, that it doesn't take much more to 'tip them over the top' and cause real damage.

We need less chemical and heavy metal damage and a genuine belief that our own immune systems are capable of looking after us, if they are not damaged in any way. Most people need de-tox. therapies and not more toxins being introduced into their often aleady overburdended bodily systems. The trouble here of course is that none of the truths which I have described add to the pharmaceutical companies huge profits!"

LONDON (AFX) - Bavarian Nordic AS said it has started a Phase I and a Phase I/II clinical study in Europe with MVA-BN polytope vaccine against HIV.

The vaccine was recently released from the company's facility in Berlin for use in clinical trials.

Results from both studies are expected in the second half of 2007.

MVA-BN polytope is the second of the company's three vaccine candidates to enter clinical trials.

source

WHO urges massive increase in bird-flu vaccine production

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Right. Let's see the death rate from bird-flu disease:

Since it re-emerged in 2003, H5N1 bird flu has infected 256 people, killing 151, mainly in southeast Asia. Although it has been difficult for humans to catch, health authorities fear it could evolve into a form more easily passed between people and trigger a pandemic.

Do you know that only in South Africa there are more people dying from AIDS DAILY? Shouldn't there be more emphasis in this direction?

Anyways, the article is below. Read the "breaking news from WHO", if you feel like.

Health Ministry: No link between flu vaccine, deaths

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Health officials rule out suspicions death of four patients was caused by flu vaccine.

The Health Ministry ruled out on Monday any link between vaccination against flu and the deaths of four patients who died within eight days of receiving the same flu vaccine.

The Vaccination Hoax

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Another website that expresses anti-vaccination point of view.

And another disappointment. Not due to contents of this website. On the contrary, what's written there is very interesting. However, the creator of this website doesn't know much about how the website should look to be appealing to its visitors. Though I have to admit it's not as ugly as Vaccination Liberation.

Maybe I should contact him?

Anyways, the link to the summary is here - http://www.whale.to/vaccines/note.html.

Deaths linked to flu vaccine

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ISRAEL - The Health Ministry ordered a halt of all flu vaccinations across the country after three people died on Sunday, days after being injected with the same flu vaccine.

The Ministry said an investigation has been launched.

The victims, aged 52, 70, and 72, were vaccinated at a Kiryat Gat Leumi clinic where they have been receiving the same vaccine for three years. They also suffered unnamed health problems.

Are vaccines safe and necessary?

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Recently I came across website related to Vaccination Liberation.

As much as I hate its design and understand that many visitors may and will be repulsed by site layout, fonts size, etc, I have to admit that the information presented there is relevant and absolutely worth reading. If you are not afraid to break your eyes for 5 minutes, proceed to the overview at http://www.vaclib.org/intro/present/overview.htm

Personalized Cancer Vaccine Improves Disease Free Survival

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TAMPA, FL -- October 20, 2006 -- The search for effective anti-cancer therapies increasingly leads medical scientists to immune-based agents like anti-vaccines, or a "personalized" approach based on a patient's unique disease status. A new study reported by Tampa-based Accentia Biopharmaceuticals, achieves promising treatment objectives by exploiting both therapeutic approaches simultaneously.

Results from an ongoing clinical trial suggest that patients with non-Hodgkins lymphoma (NHL), a cancer of the lymphatic system, can benefit from treatment with a novel anti-cancer vaccine based on the patient's specific tumor. The study results, published September 20 in the prestigious Journal of the National Cancer Institute, demonstrated that administration of the BiovaxID™ anti-cancer vaccine formulation resulted in long-lasting remission in NHL patients.

No news

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No, I am not going to write anything either about how flu vaccine will be available for US citizens, or that there are delays in its delievery.

People, open your eyes. you don't need a flu vaccine.

If your immune system is already weak, this shot will only give your body unnecessary work.
Your immune sistem will only strain for nothing. The shot might protect you only from a few probable stamms of influenza. But we don't know which ones will actually come.

Unless (conspirologist mode on) someone evil will release "proper" influenza to start next flu season (conspirologist mode off).

By getting a flu shot you may protect you for a short period against some influenza stamms. This is uncertain. What is certain that you will contribute to pharma corporations' profit.

Think.

VIENNA, Austria, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Vical Incorporated (Nasdaq: VICL) today announced that a single injection of the company's lead avian influenza (flu) DNA vaccine candidate provided 100% protection in ferrets against lethal challenge with a highly virulent H5N1 virus (Vietnam/1203/2004). Conventional vaccines under development for avian flu typically have required two or more doses in humans, even with novel adjuvants, to produce the immunogenicity levels expected to provide protection.

Researchers say vaccine for meningitis has risks

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ATLANTA - Young people who get a new meningitis shot may have a slightly higher risk of developing a paralyzing side effect, federal researchers said Thursday.

Even so, federal health officials said the benefits far outweigh the risk of the rare condition, Guillain-Barre syndrome. They are not backing off their recommendation that most students be vaccinated.

The researchers cautioned that they are uncertain about their risk estimate and a larger study is being planned.

Uganda: HIV Vaccine Trial Starts

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HIV/AIDS vaccine trials to prevent mother-to-child transmission through breast-feeding have started at Mulago Hospital, writes Hillary Kiirya.

The trail, the first in Africa, started on Thursday on the first-born baby out of the 50 mothers screened.

"Making breastfeeding safe is possibly the most important challenge for those involved in the prevention of mother-to-child transmission in Sub-Saharan Africa," said Prof. Francis Mmiro, the lead investigator of the study.

Inovio Biomedical to Receive $1.1 Million from U.S. DoD

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Inovio Biomedical Corporation, a late stage developer of therapies for cancer and applications using electroporation to deliver gene-based treatments, announced today that it will receive an appropriation of $1.1 million from the United States Department of Defense to develop applications of its electroporation-based gene delivery technology for vaccination against infectious diseases including potential bioterrorism agents.

The United States Congress appropriated the funding in the Defense Appropriations Bill for 2007. The appropriation is a continuation of prior funding from the United States Army to Inovio focused on the development of a more effective gene delivery system for gene-based vaccines. Inovio is working closely on this project with Dr. Connie Schmaljohn, a world-renowned virologist and chief of the Department of Molecular Virology at the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, USAMRIID, at Ft. Detrick, Maryland.

HIV Vaccine Research Public Awareness Campaign

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National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases: The campaign, called "Be The Generation," calls on young people in the U.S. to stop AIDS through the discovery of a safe and effective HIV vaccine during their lifetime.

It will launch this month with a television ad running for six weeks in 14 U.S. cities where HIV vaccine research is underway.

The campaign also includes a Web site, bethegeneration.org, a community toolkit and partnerships with vaccine research institutions and community-based groups (NIAID release, 10/16).

Documentary raises doubts over meningococcal vaccine

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There was a documentary aired in Norway which raised doubts about meningococcal vaccine safety.

"To say it nice, they enlisted hundreds of thousands of small kids into a gigantic experiment,"
..project leaders knew that subjects might suffer serious complications during the trial..[but] Trial subjects were not properly informed about the possibility of serious side effects during the trial..

Countries 'ill-prepared' for bird flu vaccination

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and I don't blame them. Looking at infection and mortality rate mentioned in this very article, I see that the bird-flu does not pose the same risk, as for example HIV/AIDS or Cancer.

According to the WHO a bird flu pandemic is a serious threat; 256 cases of confirmed avian flu have been reported to the WHO, which have resulted in 151 deaths.

Shall we compare these numbers to daily mortality rate due to AIDS in South Africa, for example?

Read more on "ill-prepared" countries..

World’s First Cervical Cancer Vaccination

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A Swedish teen has become the first person outside the test group to be vaccinated against cervical cancer.

The newspaper “Metro” reports that 17 year old Terese Åkerlund received the vaccination with the medicine Gardasil Monday at Stockholm’s Queen Sophia Hospital.

Almost a century later, a vaccine against "Spanish flu"

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It seems that researchers are running out of deadly and not so deadly diseases.

"Dr. Jeffrey Taubenberger, a government researcher who used molecular techniques to reconstruct all eight genes of the Spanish flu virus, has suggested that even with today's medical advances, an equally virulent flu strain could kill 100 million people or more worldwide."
We can only hope that this reconsturcted virus won't get released by accident... or can't we?

I let you read the whole article below..

WASHINGTON, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs William Winkenwerder, M.D. reportedly will announce later today that U.S. soldiers will once again be forced under threat of court martial to be injected with anthrax vaccine without their voluntary, informed consent. The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) is warning that one-size-fits- all mandatory vaccination policies are dangerous for those with genetic and other biological risk factors, making them vulnerable to brain and immune system dysfunction following anthrax vaccination.

Today, NVIC is launching the Military and Biodefense Vaccine Project (MBVP) with a website (http://www.military-biodefensevaccines.org) dedicated to providing the public with information on the research, development, regulation, policymaking, legislation and government promotion of military and biodefense vaccines that may be mandated for mass use in both military and civilian populations.

TORONTO, CANADA -- October 16, 2006 -- Patients who have human immunodeficiency virus infection should be offered measles vaccinations if an outbreak erupts, doctors said here at the 44th annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA).

"Recent outbreaks of measles in adults in Mexico have raised the question of safety and efficacy of measles vaccine in HIV-infected adults," said Pablo Belaunzaran, MD, infectious disease specialist, Instituto Nacional de Ciencias y Nutricion, Salvador Zubiran, Mexico.

Researchers Studying Novel Therapy For Prostate Cancer

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Newswise — A team of University of Iowa Health Care researchers has launched an important clinical trial of a novel therapeutic that may eventually lead to new treatments for men diagnosed with prostate cancer.

The Ad5-TRAIL gene therapy for prostate cancer research trial is a Phase I study designed to test the optimal dosage at which the therapeutic agent can safely be given to patients.

The clinical study is being co-led by Thomas Griffith, Ph.D., an associate professor in the UI Department of Urology, and Richard Williams, M.D., the Rubin H. Flocks Chair in Urology and professor and head of the UI Department of Urology.

How many more of our kids have to die?

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Press Release: National Meningitis Trust of NZ

"How many more of our kids have to die from a preventable disease?"

"We desperately need your help now."

Fionn Marshall succumbed to the rapid silent killer pneumococcal disease at just 20 months of age. Even though his mother Margaret had a nursing background and access to the best child health experts at Starship Children's Health in Auckland, it was not enough to save Fionn.

LONDON (AFX) - Cobra Bio-Manufacturing PLC said it has signed a research and development agreement with the Naval Medical Research Center of the US Navy to construct and test a vaccine against malaria.

The venture will use Cobra's proprietary ORT-VAC oral vaccine delivery technology.

Diary of an HIV vaccine trial volunteer

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While the majority of news websites are spamming that there are enough flu shots for the next "flu season", at the same time there are some reports of flu shots not being available straight away. In my opinion all this is nothing else but a "battage" or a stir created by PR departements of pharmaceutical companies and related media corporations.

It will be a shame to miss something which in reality is much more important than a hype against a shot which will "save" you from 2 weeks of sneezing.

Here it is:

The first HIV vaccine trial in Jamaica has begun with 24 persons who have volunteered to be tested from an experimental vaccine. Beginning today, The Sunday Gleaner will carry a diary of persons participating in the study. Dr. Peter Figueroa, chief of epidemiology and AIDS at the Ministry of Health, said it was not possible for persons to contract HIV or develop AIDS from the experimental vaccine. "I must stress that it is not possible to get HIV infection or develop AIDS from experimental vaccines< because they are not made from live HIV, killed HIV (or) weakened HIV or infected cells," he stated

$75,000 Vaccine Offer

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I just came across this offer, which was published on 1st of August 2006 by Jock Doubleday http://www.SpontaneousCreation.org:

THE FOLLOWING OFFER is made to U.S.-licensed medical doctors who routinely administer childhood vaccinations and to pharmaceutical company CEOs worldwide:

Jock Doubleday, director of the California 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation Natural Woman, Natural Man, Inc., hereby offers $75,000.00 to the first medical doctor or pharmaceutical company CEO who publicly drinks a mixture of standard vaccine additives ingredients in the same amount as a six-year-old child is recommended to receive under the year-2005 guidelines of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (In the event that thimerosal has recently been removed from a particular vaccine, the thimerosal-containing version of that vaccine will be used.)

Vigil for yellow fever stepped up

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NEW DELHI: An Ethiopian marathon runner has been put on quarantine at the Yellow Fever Hospital (YFH), at Delhi airport, after he failed to produce the mandatory yellow fever vaccination certificate.

The athlete, whose name was not revealed by the Union health ministry, had come to India to participate in the second Delhi Half Marathon, the world's richest with a prize money of $150,000, to be held on October 15.

Pharma companies ready plans to tackle Dengue

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NEW DELHI: Sensing an opportunity in the dengue outbreak, major pharma companies — including GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), Novartis and Sanofi Pasteur — are developing a treatment and preventive against the disease.

While leading vaccine manufacturers, GSK Biologicals and Sanofi Pasteur are working on a vaccine which will be a preventive against the disease, Novartis is developing a drug for its treatment.

Influenza Vaccine Q&A

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What is thimerosal?

Thimerosal is a very effective preservative that has been used since the 1930s to prevent contamination in some multidose vials of vaccines (preservatives are not required for vaccines in single dose vials). Thimerosal contains about 49 percent ethylmercury. There is no convincing evidence of harm caused by the low doses of thimerosal in vaccines, except for minor reactions like redness and swelling at the injection site. However, in July 1999, the Public Health Service (PHS) agencies, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and vaccine manufacturers agreed that thimerosal should be reduced or eliminated in vaccines as a precautionary measure.

By TERRY RINDFLEISCH, 14 Oct 2006

A limited supply of mercury-free flu vaccine will be available in La Crosse for children whose parents are concerned about any potential dangers.

The minute amount of thimerosal, a type of mercury used since the 1930s as a preservative to kill bacteria and prevent contamination in some vaccines, poses no risk to patients, La Crosse physicians said.

But Dr. Rajiv Naik, a Gundersen Lutheran pediatrician, said the Internet has fed fears that vaccinations that contain thimerosal are linked to autism.

Promising roadmap for Human Herpes Vaccine

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WASHINGTON: Montana State University Virologist Bill Halford has successfully tested a herpes vaccine in mice, opening new avenues for the development of a new vaccine to prevent humans from contacting genital herpes and other diseases caused by herpes simplex viruses.

In a study published earlier this year in the Virology Journal, MSU Virologist William Halford had shown that mice exposed to genetically modified herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) did not show any sign of disease 30 days after being exposed to a particularly lethal ‘wild-type’ strain of the virus.

Scientists at Makerere University, in Uganda, along with scientists from Johns Hopkins and other institutions worldwide, have begun the first clinical safety trial in Africa of a vaccine to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV through breastfeeding, according to a news release from Johns Hopkins Friday.

Breast milk is a leading route of infection in the developing world, according to the World Health Organization, which estimates that each day 1,800 newborns are infected with the AIDS virus, 30 percent to 40 percent by virus carried in their mother's milk.

Health Dept. To Distribute Free Flu Vaccines To Children

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BALTIMORE, Md. -- The Baltimore City Health Department is going to be offering free flu vaccinations to elementary school-age children over the next two weeks.

Health officials said the free FluMist vaccine will be available to healthy children ages 5 to 11 at the following elementary schools:

Foolish Vaccine exemptions....?

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The Daily Policy Digest has posted an article called "FOOLISH VACCINE EXEMPTIONS".

While I am considering whether should I continue writing posts with such news, or simply filter them out, still I will try to stay as objective as possible.

Two quotes:
"However the vaccines act inside the human body, true natural immunity or any other qualitative benefit cannot be ascribed to them: their effectiveness is a mere statistic, and the resulting "immunity" a narrowly defined technicality."---Richard Moskowitz, M.D.

"After contracting measles and other childhood illnesses (e.g.. chickenpox, scarlet fever, whooping cough, rubella, mumps and may be others), it has been widely accepted by many health practitioners, including experienced orthodox paediatricians that this is often beneficial for the general health of many children. Specifically it has been shown that children contracting measles naturally were less likely to suffer from allergic conditions such as asthma, eczema and hayfever."---Trevor Gunn BSc

The original article is below:

COTE D IVOIRE: Yellow fever outbreak

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ABIDJAN, 12 October (IRIN) - Two cases of deadly and untreatable Yellow Fever have been reported in Cote d'Ivoire in the last week, and health officials fear that the outbreak could quickly spread if funds are not raised for a widespread vaccination campaign.

Yellow fever is a deadly viral disease spread by mosquitoes. Epidemics can spread to an average 20 percent of people in affected areas, 50 percent of whom may die, according to the United Nations World Health Organisation (WHO). There is no treatment for people already infected, but a simple vaccination can stop the disease in its tracks.

A large-scale action on vaccination of people against influenza starts in Krasnoyarsk Territory on October, 16. The action is a part of the national project "Health" initiated by President Putin. 300 thousand doses of the vaccine have already been delivered to the region and are being distributed among districts and towns now, as the agency of health service of Krasnoyarsk Territory reported.

Vaccination will be free for children who go to kindergartens and pre-school, teachers and doctors, retired people. The rest people will be able to be vaccinated with medicine made in Russia or abroad for $7-$16 in the local hospitals. Doctors also offer corporate vaccination.

It is worth mentioning that influenza strains are expected to be the same as last year.

source

Most Americans don't worry about flu

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Most of us don't worry about catching the flu from other people, but we incorrectly fear getting the bug from the influenza vaccine. That's the word from a new survey that was released last week by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases. NFID discovered many misconceptions about flu shots - which are supposed to be abundant this year. The government estimates that more than 110 million doses will be distributed nationwide. If you want a shot, call your doctor first to see if he or she has any in stock. No luck? Then visit this website and punch in your zipcode for a list of local retail stores that will be offering flu-shot clinics. Read on for more about the survey.

China to start 2nd trial for bird flu vaccine soon

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By Tan Ee Lyn, Reuters, 12 Oct 2006

BEIJING, Oct 12 (Reuters) - A Chinese company that is developing a H5N1 bird flu vaccine for humans plans to kick off a second clinical trial before the end of the year and will have its production capacity expanded ten-fold by mid-2007.

"The second clinical trial should be over by July or August next year, just before the flu season begins," Yin Weidong, managing director of state-backed Beijing Sinovac Biotech Co., told Reuters in an interview on Thursday.

He tried to ease concerns over using a strain of the virus found in Vietnam in the vaccine, saying it would offer some protection against other H5N1 strains.

Battling the flu without vaccine?

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The University of Pittsburgh plans to work with the Pittsburgh Public Schools to investigate ways to battle the flu that do not involve vaccines or other pharmaceuticals.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced this week that Pitt is among eight centers that will share $5.2 million in grants to assess the effect of hand-washing, the wearing of masks, or other protective measures that could be used during a flu pandemic.

Three new vaccination available

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ATLANTA, Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Several new vaccines have been licensed and approved for use within the past year -- extending the immunization period from childhood into adolescence.

Dr. Larry Pickering of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and Dr. Carol Baker of Baylor College of Medicine in Houston gave an update on new vaccines currently available at the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition in Atlanta.

Antiviral response promotes bacterial infection

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by Melissa Lee Phillips, The Scientist, 10 Oct 2006

An innate immune response to viral infection can kill white blood cells needed to fight off bacteria, according to a study published online this week in PNAS. This effect could explain why bacterial "superinfections" can take hold in the body more easily when a viral pathogen is already present, the study authors say.

"Viral-bacterial synergism is something that is a significant clinical issue in both human and veterinary medicine and we don't have a detailed understanding of what's going on," said Charles Czuprynski of the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine, who was not involved in the study.

Parents unaware of new flu vaccination guidelines

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EAST BAY - From costumes to candy, a parent's to-do list may be the scariest thing about October. But getting your children vaccinated against the flu is one to-do that many parents may not realize is a must-do.

In fact, an overwhelming majority — 84 percent — of parents are unaware of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) new influenza vaccination recommendation for healthy children, according to a recent survey conducted by Families Fighting Flu, a non-profit organization of parents who have lost children to the flu.

NeuroVax launches trial of MS vaccine

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CARLSBAD, Calif., Oct. 10 (UPI) -- U.S. firm Immune Response Corp. said Tuesday it has secured a contractor for its phase 2 trial of NeuroVax, a vaccine for multiple sclerosis.

The company said it has contracted with Accelsiors CRO & Consultancy Services to oversee the study.

IRC said it would start enrolling patients in the study by the end of the year, eventually recruiting 200 subjects with relapsing-remitting MS.

Still convinced you need a flu shot?

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Are you in fear that there will be not enough flu shots for you?
Are you still convinced that you need a flu shot?

If you are, then don't read this article - Winterproof Your Body.

However, if you consider that there are other ways than vaccination to stay healthy, I'm inviting you for a 2 minute interesting read.

Remember, not a single drug will keep you in a good health unless your food and lifestyle are healthy.

Vaccination and the Path of Medical Technology

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Part V of «The Case Against Immunizations» by Richard Moskowitz, M.D.

«The idea of eradicating measles or polio has become attractive to us simply because the power of medical science makes it seem technically possible: we worship every victory of technology over Nature, just as the bullfight celebrates the triumph of human intelligence over the brute beast. That is why we do not begrudge the drug companies their exorbitant profits and gladly volunteer the bodies of our children for their latest experiments. Vaccination is essentially a religious sacrament of our own participation in the miracle of medical science, a veritable auto-da-fé in the name of modern civilization itself.»

Therapeutic Vaccines for Prostate Cancer

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Prostate cancer is the most common, noncutaneous cancer for men in the U.S., leading to more than 30,000 deaths a year. Vaccines for prostate cancer, which for several years have been shown to generate immunologic responses, are beginning to show significant clinical promise.

At present, numerous therapeutic options are being investigated, including autologous and allogeneic whole-tumor cell vaccines, dendritic cell vaccines, and poxvirus-based vaccines. Advances in basic immunology have translated into new, more complex therapeutic strategies. The findings from current trials and the demonstrated potential to combine vaccines with conventional therapies herald a promising future for the treatment of prostate cancer.

Ghana's Malaria Problem Gets Boost From Vaccine Trials

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Malaria is spread by mosquitoes By Efam Dovi, Accra, 10 October 2006

Hundreds of children are taking part in a malaria vaccine trial in six African countries. The U.N. says the mosquito-borne disease claims more than one-million lives globally each year, 90 percent of them in sub-Saharan Africa, and the vast majority children.

Poverty and lack of organization have frustrated Africa's efforts to control malaria's spread with low-tech means - such as spreading oil on stagnant ponds where mosquitoes breed and distributing window screens and bed nets.

Now, a vaccine program, sponsored in part by the Belgium-based pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals, is showing promising signs for many African countries.

Pfizer agrees to acquire vaccine developer

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BOSTON, Oct 9 (Reuters) - Pfizer Inc. (PFE.N: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Monday it has agreed to acquire privately held PowderMed Ltd. for an undisclosed sum in a bid to enter the increasingly lucrative market for vaccines.

Based in Oxford, England, PowderMed has developed a proprietary technology that delivers DNA-coated microscopic gold particles into the skin to help the immune system fight influenza and chronic viral diseases.

By Rebecca Vesely, InsideBayArea, 9 Oct 2006

Although there is expected to be plenty of flu vaccine this year, some health providers say their shipments of a special mercury-free flu shot for children younger than 3 and pregnant women is delayed.

On July 1, California became the first state to require that flu vaccine given to pregnant women and children younger than 3 years old contain little or no thimerosal, a preservative that contains mercury that has been used in vaccines since the 1930s to prevent bacterial contamination.

New anti-virus vaccine's about cancer, not sex

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by Patty Fisher, 9 Oct 2006

As if we needed another reminder of how quickly kids grow up, doctors are now vaccinating 11-year-old girls against a sexually transmitted virus.

Gardasil, the new vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV) that was approved by the government this summer, began arriving in the Bay Area recently. Kaiser Permanente will start giving the shots today.

PORTLAND, Ore., Oct. 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Studies presented at the Modern Vaccine Adjuvants et Delivery Systems Conference and at the AIDS Vaccine Conference 2006 show improved immunogenicity of vaccines when used with the Biojector® 2000 ("B2000") in cancer and AIDS vaccines.

by Juan Ameen, 8 Oct 2006

People over 55 can go their family doctor to have the flu vaccine instead of at the health clinics and pay only the doctor’s fee.

The Association of Private Family Doctors spokesperson Martin Borg said that this year doctors will be given flu vaccines for their patients who are entitled to receive it for free from the State health services.

FDA guidelines may help speed flu-shot modernization

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By Lauran Neergaard, Associated Press, 7 Oct 2006

WASHINGTON ---- For a half-century, flu vaccine has been brewed in chicken eggs. The government issued new guidelines last week that promise to spur a more modern recipe: using vats of cells instead.

Flu vaccine monopoly broken

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By Du Xiaoli (chinadaily.com.cn), 8 Oct 2006

Domestic vaccine enterprises showed obvious advantages in China's flu vaccine market compared with their foreign counterparts this year, breaking the foreign enterprise monopoly of flu vaccines for the first time, according to the Beijing Business Today.

It is reported that 25 million doses of the flu vaccines will be put on the Chinese market this year, the largest supply in history. Domestically produced vaccines grasped two thirds of the market share and domestic pharmaceutical enterprises became the biggest winner on China's flu vaccine market this year.

"The development of global vaccine giants is restricted to a certain extent on China's market," said a person surnamed Fan from Jiangsu Yanshen Biological Technology Stock Co Ltd.

The full text is available in the Sept-Oct Issue of China Medicine.

Alzheimer Vaccine to Get Trial

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Singapore - Today reported on Novartis plans to conduct trials of its Alzheimer’s vaccine in the city state, among other sites. Reporting from what was billed as the Novartis Biotechnology Leadership Camp” here, the daily quoted officials saying a vaccine could be available in perhaps five to seven years. That will probably be too late for Singapore’s current 22,000 Alzheimer sufferers, but not for the 187,000 this tiny republic is projected to have in 45 years. Paul Herrling, the pharma’s head of corporate research, explained the object of the exercise this way: “What we try to do is use the immune system to clear the brain of one little piece of protein that seems to be killing the nerve cells.&rdquo

Does US have enough Flu Vaccines ready?

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YES, THERE'S ENOUGH FLU VACCINE.

If you want to fall for the mass advertisement and marketing programs, go ahead and get it.
If you want to make sure that your immunodefence will get compromised, go ahead and get it.
If you want to break your child's immune system, make sure he gets a vaccine shot.

Otherwise, if you believe that all this is nothing more but a huge hype, and if you are confident that your lifestyle allows your immune system to be in a proper shape, stay away from it.

Exotic Pets: Disaster Waiting to Happen?

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A man shows off his pet Celebes ape at the Mid-Ohio Exotic Animal Auction. The ape is a type of macaque, in which the herpes-B virus occurs naturally. (Photo by Mia Song)

by Amy Ellis Nutt, 6 Oct 2006

MOUNT HOPE, Ohio -- The monkey rattled the bars of its cage, then threw pieces of food at the small crowd gathered around its metal crate. Crouching, two children giggled and reached tentatively toward the animal.

A tag on the cage identified the occupant for sale: "Java macaque, 6 years old, missing a little hair."

What the sign did not say was this: Ninety percent of macaques are carriers of the herpes-B virus -- relatively harmless to monkeys, but so virulent to humans it can liquefy the brainstem and turn the spinal cord to mush.

Bird flu vaccine has promise, Baxter says

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DEERFIELD -- Baxter International said preliminary clinical results of its influenza vaccine are encouraging.

The company said that the vaccine to counteract bird flu is "highly immunogenic" and produces functional antibodies to H5N1 influenza even at the lowest dose, as shown by results from the first two phases of clincical trials.

US FDA approves new flu vaccine for this season

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved a new vaccine for this upcoming flu-season. FluLaval will be used to immunize people 18 years of age and older against the strains of influenza virus judged likely to cause seasonal flu in 2006-2007. With this addition of FluLaval there are now five FDA-licensed vaccines for the U.S. for the upcoming season.

Doctors Could Go Needle-Free But Sticking Points Remain

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Thanks to his "hypospray," Star Trek's Dr. McCoy never had to deal with any dangerous needles. The same could be true for your own doctor, since needle-free jet injectors have been available for more than 100 years. But cost and convenience have made needles a hard habit to break.

Stricter medical regulations and improved injector designs may make the switch to jet injection easier.

This would be great news for the roughly 10 percent of us who are needlephobic. It would also prevent needle-stick injuries—more than 600,000 per year in the United States alone—that carry the risk of HIV and hepatitis.

by Tracy Ellig, MSU News Service, 6 Oct 2006

A genetically modified strain of the herpes virus with potential as a human vaccine is among seven new biotechnologies faculty at Montana State University have developed.

Interested companies and entrepreneurs can license the new biotechnologies by contacting Nick Zelver with the MSU Technology Transfer Office at (406) 994-7868, http://tto.montana.edu or by e-mail at nzelver@montana.edu. MSU requests that interest be expressed in writing by Nov. 15.

Mice vaccinated with a live, genetically-modified herpes simplex virus showed no sign of the disease 30 days after being exposed to a lethal "wild-type" strain of herpes simplex virus, the MSU study showed.

High Hopes for Ragweed Vaccine

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Also, an Effective but Expensive Treatment for Macular Degeneration<

by Joanna Schaffhausen, ABCNews, 5 Oct 2006

A POTENTIAL RAGWEED VACCINE
A small study of 25 people, only 15 of whom completed the full study, finds that injections that lower the body's immune system reaction to ragweed may help alleviate people's symptoms during ragweed season. In the study, adults with ragweed allergy received either six once-a-week injections of the ragweed vaccine or injections with a placebo vaccine.

The vaccine was not a home run, as it failed to meet its major target for success, which was reducing nasal reaction when volunteers were tested with ragweed in the lab. However, the vaccine did show some potential. It improved volunteers' symptoms as self-rated in diaries they kept during the experiment and improved their quality of life during hay fever season. Moreover, the effects of the vaccine appeared to carry over into a second year, relieving symptoms for a second straight season. This study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine by researchers from Johns Hopkins University.

Flu Vaccine Recommended For People With Asthma

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With flu season just around the corner, the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI) is recommending that people with asthma and other chronic health conditions receive a flu vaccination as soon as possible.

Each year, millions of people in the United States get influenza. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 36,000 people per year in the United States die from influenza, and over 200,000 people have to be admitted to the hospital as a result of the flu.

Treatment to Offer "Instant Flu Protection"

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Research led by Professor Nigel Dimmock at the University of Warwick is developing an entirely new method of protecting against flu. This has been shown to protect animals against various strains of flu, and could offer protection against the full range of influenza A infections, including H5N1 and any new pandemic or epidemic strains infecting humans. The 'protecting virus' provides instant protection, and completely prevents flu symptoms developing by slowing influenza infection rates to such an extent that the harmful infection becomes a vaccine against that very form of influenza. It can also counter an actual infection and offer protection if given up to 24 hours after first infection (and possibly longer).

Existing vaccination methods depend on stimulating the body's immune system, so that white blood cells produce antibodies that attach to the surface of the virus and start the process of killing it. This works well for many diseases, such as smallpox, polio and measles, but is much less effective with influenza, as the coat of the flu virus is continually changing. Vaccination against one strain of flu, for instance H3N2, is totally ineffective against another, such as H5N1. This is especially problematic when a new pandemic strain emerges, as all existing vaccines are likely to be totally ineffective.

Does the Vaccine Work?

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The Washington Post,03 Oct 2006

How effective is flu vaccine in preventing the flu? Not perfect, but pretty good. Flu vaccine works by stimulating your immune system to recognize and attack specific strains of flu viruses. Because these viruses change fast, a yearly vaccination is required. The current vaccine is based on these changes.

Each year the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracks flu virus strains worldwide in an attempt to predict which new strains will be circulating during the coming flu season. Based on this information, the agency recommends the makeup of that year’s flu vaccine. When virus strains in the vaccine are wellmatched to actual virus strains circulating about, the flu vaccine appears to be 70 to 90 percent effective in preventing the flu among healthy adults younger than 65.

Researchers are busy sequencing the genes in the human influenza virus. This information will enable scientists to quickly zero in on currently circulating virus strains and their variants, which should lead to more-effective vaccines.

GSK invests in vaccine factory

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The Journal, 30 Sep 2006

DRUGS firm GlaxoSmithKline is investing more than £339m into a French factory to boost vaccine manufacturing capacity.

The pharmaceutical group, which employs 2,200 people at plants in County Durham and Cumbria, is investing the money in the St Amand-Les-Eaux factory.

The plant will meet increasing uptake of its existing products and anticipated strong demand for Cervarix, a new vaccine to prevent cervical cancer, that is expected to be approved next year.

Jean Stephenne, head of the company's vaccines operations, said: “GSK's vaccines business is enjoying explosive growth.”

The new site, which is expected to be operational in 2011, will house formulation, filling, freeze-drying and packaging lines, boosting GlaxoSmithKline's global capacity in these between 50% and 60%.

It will contribute to the production of new Glaxo vaccines now under development, included an improved flu vaccine for the elderly, as well as Cervarix.

Can vaccines cure our bad habits?

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By Ronald Kotulak Tribune science reporter, Chicago Tribune, 01 Oct 2006

Vaccines, the most potent medical weapon ever devised to vanquish deadly germs, are now being called on to do something totally different and culturally revolutionary—inoculate people against bad habits like overeating, cigarette smoking and drug use.

Whether this new era of vaccine research can actually subdue many of the poor lifestyle choices that are today’s biggest threats to health—causing obesity, cancer, heart disease and other problems—has yet to be proved.

But the evidence is promising enough to persuade the federal government to put millions of dollars toward finding out if two of the vaccines can end nicotine and cocaine addiction.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse, which has spent $15 million on clinical trials for the vaccines and plans to spend more, predicts that one of the nicotine vaccines may be available for marketing in three years.