Novartis: Data supports pre-pandemic vax campaign

Investigators are touting new data that shows Novartis' pre-pandemic flu vaccine Aflunov can deliver swift protection to people primed with the MF59-adjuvanted vaccine up to six years earlier. Those people primed with the adjuvanted vaccine developed immunity seven days after a booster shot.

That sort of response could help immensely in the event of a pandemic and supports efforts to launch a pre-pandemic immunization campaign. If health workers can protect people from a bird flu outbreak with a single booster shot, they could rapidly offer protection to a large population.

"These data highlight the potential for priming the public against an avian influenza of pandemic proportion with the MF59 adjuvant. The results indicate that regardless of which avian strain individuals are originally primed with, they are quickly protected against a broad range of avian strains following their MF59-adjuvanted booster vaccine, even strains they were not initially inoculated against," said study investigator Iain Stephenson M.R.C.P., Infectious Diseases Unit, University Hospitals Leicester and Department of Inflammation, Infection and Immunity, University of Leicester, UK.

- check out the Novartis release