Merck looks to broaden Gardasil use; Childhood vaccine schedule updated

Vaccine Market

> Merck on Wednesday said it had provided U.S. regulators with new information needed for approval to market its Gardasil cervical cancer vaccine to women between the ages of 27 to 45. Report

> Children older than 6 months should be vaccinated for the H1N1 flu, and girls should get their first dose of HPV vaccine by age 12, according to new federal guidelines. An updated schedule of recommended childhood vaccinations from physicians groups and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention adds new vaccines approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and suggests some other changes, said a UAB physician who helped write the recommendations. Story

H1N1

> Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical company Biological E Limited has entered into an agreement with U.S.-based biotechnology company VaxInnate Corporation to license its recombinant H1N1 pandemic swine flu vaccine. Under this agreement, Biological E would produce vaccine for India and other South Asian countries, including Bangladesh, Bhutan, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Report

> Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) is asking top government officials for information about the H1N1 vaccine following a voluntary recall last month by two manufacturers of the vaccine. Release

Vaccine Research

> Entest BioMedical announced it has obtained its first tumor specimen, a canine parathyroid tumor, to be utilized in the development of Entest's immunotherapeutic cancer vaccine. According to Dr. Steven Josephs, lead cancer researcher for Entest, "Stem cells derived from tumors appear to be key components for creating an immunotherapeutic tumor vaccine. Inducing a patient's immune system to attack cancer stem cells may be a key step in complete elimination of the cancer." Release

> Today, scientists testing experimental vaccines usually rely on laboratory experiments [that] don't always offer an accurate picture of the human immune response. Now, researchers at MIT and elsewhere are trying a new tactic--recreating the human immune system in a mouse.  Story

And Finally... A new study concludes that people tend to match their risk perceptions about policy issues with their cultural values, which may explain the intense disagreement about proposals to vaccinate elementary-school girls against human-papillomavirus (HPV). The study also says people's values shape their perceptions of expert opinion on the vaccine. Release

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