Issue: July 2013
June 11, 2013
1 min read

FDA approves four-strain influenza vaccine

Issue: July 2013
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The FDA has approved a supplemental biologics license application for vaccines. The vaccine is now indicated for use in children aged 6 months and older, according to a press release.

The four-strain influenza vaccine (Fluzone Quadrivalent, Sanofi-Pasteur) will be the first quadrivalent vaccine available during an influenza season. The vaccine includes two A strains and two B strains and is licensed for use in children aged 6 months and older, adolescents and adults.

Influenza B epidemics occur every 2 to 4 years in all age groups. Influenza B is a common cause of influenza-related mortality in children and has been associated with pneumonia and other respiratory illnesses, nervous system disease, muscle pain and inflammation, and other complications. Influenza B has accounted for up to 44% of influenza-associated deaths in children and adolescents.

“Sanofi-Pasteur is committed to providing new immunization options for the prevention of influenza to help health care providers meet the specific immunization needs of all types of patients, and we are excited to introduce Fluzone Quadrivalent vaccine as an important addition to our Fluzone Family of specialized influenza vaccines,” David Greenberg, MD, vice president of US scientific and medical affairs at Sanofi-Pasteur, said in a press release. “Protection against the type B flu strain may be an especially important factor that health care providers consider when immunizing children since influenza B causes a substantial number of illnesses, hospitalizations and deaths in the pediatric population.”