Any medication involves a balancing of risk and benefit. In areas where there is an unmet need, a little more risk might be acceptable. But the waters get muddy when two treatments, one offering better results but greater risks, are available for patients.
The coronavirus that has killed 18 people appears capable of human-to-human transmission, the WHO reports.
Having committed to offering its rotavirus vaccine--Rotavac--for $1 a dose in 2011, Indian vaccine manufacturer Bharat Biotech has now presented positive Phase III data that compares favorably to currently available rotavirus vaccines.
GlaxoSmithKline has used a text analytics model to analyze public discussion boards in an attempt to assess patient sentiment about vaccines and glean insights into why vaccine fears persist despite clinical evidence of their safety.
In 1977, dengue fever experts predicted a vaccine could be ready in 10 years. That prediction proved wildly optimistic, leaving the 2.5 billion people at risk from dengue fever without protection. Sanofi is at the forefront of dengue vaccine research but now faces a challenger from Japan.
The vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) has proven an effective tool in the past. In 2008, a U.K. study found one dose protects 95% of people against measles, with the follow-up shot immunizing most of the remaining 5%. Now similar data is emerging from Wales.
Sales of GlaxoSmithKline's rotavirus vaccine Rotarix and Merck's shingles vaccine Zostavax will be buoyed by their inclusion on the U.K. national immunization schedule.
The measles outbreak in Wales has now infected almost 900 people--with 121 cases coming in the past week--and may have caused its first death.
While Chinese officials faced some criticism for a perceived delay in announcing last month's H7N9 outbreak, positive sentiments from global health officials have far outweighed the negative comments, in sharp contrast to the SARS outbreak a decade ago.
BIO and the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations warn that more funding is needed to maintain current immunization rates while adding new vaccines to programs.