Dec 18th, 2012
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved a seasonal flu vaccine
that is four-strain by pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, it was
announced Monday. Fluarix Quadrivalent was approved by the FDA to be
used for immunization of children three years of age or older and for
adults against subtypes A and B of virus.
This is the first intramuscular vaccination that is used to protect
against four different flu strains. Vaccines that are three-strain are
administered currently to help protect against two common A viruses and
one B strain that is predicted to be the predominant strain in that
given year, said officials from GlaxoSmthKline.
However, since 2000, there have been two strains of the B virus
circulating each season, meaning those patients who are infected with a B
virus that is not contained in their vaccine, were not immunized
Company officials said that Fluarix Quadrivalent protects against two
A viruses and gives increased coverage against the second B virus. They
continued by saying that the three strain vaccines helped to protect
millions against flu, but in the last 11 flu seasons, six of the seasons
had a B strain circulating that was not the strain authorities from
public health had selected to be in the vaccine.
Glaxo announced the vaccine would start to be available for the start
of the 2013-2014 flu season. It plans to also fulfill all orders for
its three-strain vaccines. Flu vaccines are typically ordered by
healthcare providers one year in advance