Sanofi's Shantha Biotechnics hopes to relaunch vaccine

Sanofi ($SNY) subsidiary Shantha Biotechnics has told The Hindu Business Line it plans to relaunch its pentavalent vaccine, Shan5, next year after a new WHO audit. In August 2010, the World Health Organization cancelled the pre-qualification of Shan5 due to manufacturing defects found in samples produced at an Indian plant. Shantha Biotechnics is making changes to the manufacturing process for the vaccine, which is designed to protect infants against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, hepatitis B and Haemophilus influenzae. The vaccine had been lined up to make $340 million over three years, and its withdrawal led to the founder, Varaprasad Reddy, being relieved of his responsibilities, according to The Economic Times. "We have analysed the root cause and identified the component that needed some changes. We are investing significantly in upgrading our equipment and improving our quality standards of vaccines to clear audits faster in the future," Harish Iyer, managing director and CEO, told the media at Bio-Asia. The Hindu Business Line article | ET piece