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"Seqirus Media Monitoring" 29th Aug 2017

News Highlights
Agriculture department confirms eight new outbreaks of bird flu South Africa has reported eight further cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza to the World Organisation for Animal Health
Sanofi finishes purchase of Meriden's Protein Sciences Sanofi has completed the acquisition of Protein Sciences; through the acquisition, Sanofi adds a promising product to its influenza vaccine portfolio: Flublok, the only recombinant protein-based influenza vaccine approved by the FDA
CSL snags a preclinical stem cell therapy in $416M Calimmune buyout, plans to spin out HIV effort CSL has bagged the stem cell gene therapy player Calimmune for $91 million and another $325 million in milestones for the years-long clinical journey ahead; CSL CEO Paul Perreault said: “The acquisition represents another important step in the execution of our strategy for sustainable growth”
Donor blood used in groundbreaking flu treatment trial A ground breaking trial is being performed at a major hospital in Sydney's west to combat the flu. It involves the use of donor blood from people who have recovered from influenza or who have received the flu shot. Their donated blood contains antibodies that are then extracted and used to treat sick patients
‘Any flu Tamiflu’ may not be a good idea, virus can develop resistance, says experts A study which appeared in the National Centre for Biotechnology Information’s (NCBI) journal suggests that constant surveillance and data gathering of patients who have consumed Oseltamivir has to be undertaken and continuously updated
A Serious Reaction After Vaccination Rarely Occurs Again With Later Immunization A child who experiences a serious medical event after a vaccine has a very low risk of having another serious event occur after the next vaccine, found a new study
Seqirus
CSL snags a preclinical stem cell therapy in $416M Calimmune buyout, plans to spin out HIV effort
CSL has bagged the stem cell gene therapy player Calimmune for $91 million and another $325 million in milestones for the years-long clinical journey ahead; CSL CEO Paul Perreault said: “The acquisition represents another important step in the execution of our strategy for sustainable growth”
Pandemic Influenza News
Agriculture department confirms eight new outbreaks of bird flu
South Africa has reported eight further cases of highly pathogenic avian influenza to the World Organisation for Animal Health
Anti-bird flu task force rues lack of manpower at checkpoints
In a bid to come up with possible solutions against the avian influenza outbreak in the Philippines’ Pampanga province, the Cordillera Regional Avian Influenza Task Force and stakeholders met to address the lack of manpower among quarantine checkpoints
Duterte commends DA for fast action against bird flu
President Duterte commended the Department of Agriculture officials for their "quick" and "decisive" action in containing the bird flu outbreak in the Philippines
Duterte vows more assistance for Pampanga poultry sector
In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte promised on Monday to look into more possible funding for farmers whose stocks were subjected to the culling and quarantine operations recently
Industry News
SK Chem supplies world’s first quadrivalent flu vaccine
SK Chemicals said it has started supplying the world's first quadrivalent cell culture-based flu vaccine “SKY CellFlu Quadrivalent” for the local Korean market
MedImmune, AstraZeneca may face another brutal season for FluMist
MedImmune already sustained a stunning plunge in FluMist sales last year, and the CDC has recommended for the second time against using Flumist this year
CDC updates 2017-2018 flu season vaccine recommendations
The CDC upated its flu season vaccine recommendations: vaccine viruses included in the 2017–18 U.S. trivalent influenza vaccines will be an A/Michigan/45/2015 (H1N1)pdm09–like virus, an A/Hong Kong/4801/2014 (H3N2)-like virus, and a B/Brisbane/60/2008–like virus (Victoria lineage). Quadrivalent influenza vaccines will contain these three viruses and an additional influenza B vaccine virus, a B/Phuket/3073/2013–like virus (Yamagata lineage)
Sanofi finishes purchase of Meriden's Protein Sciences
Sanofi has completed the acquisition of Protein Sciences; through the acquisition, Sanofi adds a promising product to its influenza vaccine portfolio: Flublok, the only recombinant protein-based influenza vaccine approved by the FDA
Academic studies
‘Any flu Tamiflu’ may not be a good idea, virus can develop resistance, says experts
A study which appeared in the National Centre for Biotechnology Information’s (NCBI) journal suggests that constant surveillance and data gathering of patients who have consumed Oseltamivir has to be undertaken and continuously updated
Flu vaccine effectiveness depends on your genes
An analysis of influenza vaccine response in more than 500 people has identified nine genes that influence the effectiveness of the treatment. The research confirms the findings of smaller studies, and helps to explain why the effectiveness of the flu vax tends to decrease in older people
Donor blood used in groundbreaking flu treatment trial
A ground breaking trial is being performed at a major hospital in Sydney's west to combat the flu. It involves the use of donor blood from people who have recovered from influenza or who have received the flu shot. Their donated blood contains antibodies that are then extracted and used to treat sick patients
A Serious Reaction After Vaccination Rarely Occurs Again With Later Immunization
A child who experiences a serious medical event after a vaccine has a very low risk of having another serious event occur after the next vaccine, found a new study
Prior Maternal Flu Vaccination Does Not Affect Newborn Antibody Titers
Receipt of influenza vaccine the previous year predicts higher baseline antibody titers and decreased peak antibody responses against all influenza strains in pregnant women, according to a study published in Vaccine
Pediatric influenza news
Flu shots for older children, teens now available at pharmacies
Massachusetts has given approval for children age nine and older to obtain flu shots from pharmacists, but not all pharmacies are able to do so just yet. The regulation took effect in June allowing for the change
Combatting fear of childhood vaccines
A recent study in Pediatrics suggested that mothers may delay vaccinating their children if they receive discouraging information about the process. In a guest commentary Kristen Feemster, MD, MPH, MSHP, an assistant professor of pediatrics in the division of infectious diseases at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, and the director of research at the Vaccine Education Center at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, discusses these findings and what primary care providers ought to do
Over 65’s influenza news

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General Influenza News
Why you should get the flu shot early this year
“Flu season” varies from year to year, and the CDC recommends getting vaccinated as soon as the shot is available, which is usually by late August or early September
Illawarra hospitals struggle as horror flu season hits peak
NSW Health figures show there have been 2708 confirmed flu cases across the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District since January 2017. That’s well above the 750 cases for the same period in 2016 – representing a more than 260 per cent increase
Health Check: which vaccinations should I get as an adult?
If you are an adult in Australia, the kinds of vaccines you need to get will depend on several factors, including whether you missed out on childhood vaccines, if you are Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, your occupation, how old you are and whether you intend to go travelling
Pharmacists, obstetrics providers can help pregnant women overcome barriers to influenza immunization
Early-season influenza vaccination rose 6.4% among pregnant women for the 2016–17 season, at 46.6% compared with 40.2% for early in the 2015–16 season; but whether that is a blip or the start of a trend heading into the 2017–18 season remains to be seen
Variant influenza shows need for animal, human hygiene
Cases of variant influenza in humans that may have originated in swine underscore the need for keeping ill humans and animals at home, North Dakota State Veterinarian Susan Keller says. The North Dakota Health Department believes two people may have contracted a strain of influenza from swine at the North Dakota State Fair
Burden of disease
Treatments unavailable following massive flu outbreak
In what has been called the worst flu season on record, treatments for acute cases are unavailable locally in parts of NSW, due to a national shortage. “It’s going to be a severe season,” local pharmacist Jessica Simpson said, noting that a decreased rate of vaccinations had likely contributed to the outbreak
Lack of clarity on test rules, ‘under-reporting’
Doctors have alleged that guidelines on H1N1 tests lack clarity, especially when it comes to paediatric cases, and that a systematic investigation is missing in the Indian public health system, which often lead to under reporting of swine flu cases
Mae La Ma Luang refugee camp quarantined after confirmation of H1N1 cases
After three H1N1 flu cases were confirmed at a refugee camp along the Thai-Myanmar border last week, the area has been under quarantine with entries and exits temporarily suspended
Record flu season costing business A$30 million a day
Australia’s worst flu season on record has forced an additional 100,000 workers off sick, costing businesses $30 million per day