Sinovac to trial jab with potential to disrupt Pfizer in China

Chinese vaccines producer Sinovac ($SVA) laid out big R&D plans this week to test multiple candidates--one of which has the potential to challenge Big Pharma's standing in the country.

Sinovac will soon begin trialing a Pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine that could go up against Pfizer's ($PFE) Prevenar 13--once it's introduced in China. Pfizer is working to bring Prevenar 13 to China after recently pulling its vaccines sales in the coutry following the expiration of cash cow Prevenar's import license. The pharma said it's going to work with local officials to bring the successor to market, though no timeline was given.

Meanwhile, Nasdaq-listed Sinovac is also working to combine its top two moneymakers (hep A and B vaccines) into a combo as private pay demand is increasing. China has a growing middle class which helped the company grow non-government sales 28.2% for the 2014 fourth quarter.

"We believe the advancement of our pipeline programs will serve as catalysts for future growth of the company," CEO Weidong Yin said in a release.

In its full-year earnings report, the company reported a 1.8% non-government sales increase, a number Yin said was in line with expectations. Overall sales fell 13% for the year.

Aside from the Pneumococcal 13 candidate, Sinovac in March reported that its EV71 hand, foot and mouth disease vaccine was making strides, with marketing approval anticipated soon. That vaccine is under China FDA review.

The company's also working on a vaccine for protection against 23 types of pneumonia bacteria--expected to begin clinical trials in the summer; a varicella prospect awaiting clinical trial approval; and candidates for rubella and polio.

- here's the release

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