Pandemic debate heats up in Europe; Gates predicts new malaria vax in three years


> With the Europeans grappling with a multibillion-dollar bill for a swine flu vaccine that only a small slice of society actually wanted, it's no wonder that a fierce debate has been brewing over whether the swine flu pandemic was overblown. Defenders, though, would like to remind everyone of the clamor for vaccines that arose after H1N1 started killing people in Mexico. Report

> McKesson Corp. says its work distributing swine flu vaccine in the U.S. significantly boosted its profits for all of last year. "The prospect of a spike from H1N1 business raised investor expectations that the company would at least meet and even beat the forecasts," said Helene Wolk, an analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. in New York. "But H1N1 has played out at this point and the upside potential is now limited here." Story

> Serbia has cancelled its swine flu vaccine order. Report

Vaccine Research

> Bill Gates says that the world may be just three years away from seeing the debut of an effective malaria vaccine. Story

> Dynavax Technologies says its hepatitis C vaccine was safe and demonstrated anti-viral activity in an early study. Report

> Juvaris BioTherapeutics--which is developing new adjuvant technology--has completed a second close on its Series B equity financing of up to $25 million. The additional equity investment came from an undisclosed strategic corporate investor who joins SV Life Sciences and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in the round. Release

> The NIH has struck a deal to perform exploratory studies on ImmuneRegen's Homspera relating mucosal immunity that might lead to subsequent evaluation in models of HIV infection. Studies have found Homspera to be effective in enhancing the efficacy of a novel cancer vaccine, and previous studies have revealed efficacy in the space of infectious disease vaccines, specifically influenza. Release

Vaccine Market

> A new study finds that even people who have never been vaccinated against chicken pox can significantly reduce their risk of developing the ailment by getting a shot within five days of exposure. Story

> Inovio Biomedical unveiled its new, miniaturized electroporation device designed to be an easy-to-use, portable delivery product for DNA vaccines. Release