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Vaccine. 2011 Jul 1;29 Suppl 1:A40-4. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.04.122.

Live attenuated pandemic influenza vaccine: clinical studies on A/17/California/2009/38 (H1N1) and licensing of the Russian-developed technology to WHO for pandemic influenza preparedness in developing countries.

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Institute of Experimental Medicine, Department of Virology, St Petersburg, Russia.


In February 2009, Nobilon granted the World Health Organization (WHO) a non-exclusive licence to develop, register, manufacture, use and sell seasonal a pandemic live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) produced on embryonated chicken eggs. WHO was permitted to grant sub-licences to vaccine manufacturers in developing countries within the framework of its influenza vaccine technology transfer initiative. In parallel, the Institute of Experimental Medicine (IEM), Russia, concluded an agreement with WHO for the supply of Russian LAIV reassortants for use by these manufacturers. Also in 2009, IEM carried out a study on a novel A/17/California/2009/38 (H1N1) pandemic LAIV candidate derived from the pandemic-related A/California/07/2009 (H1N1) influenza virus and the attenuated A/Leningrad/134/17/57 (H2N2) master donor virus, using routine reassortant technique in embryonated chicken eggs. Following successful preclinical studies in eggs and in ferrets, a double-blind, controlled, randomized clinical trial was carried out in immunologically naïve study participants between 12-18 and 18-60 years old. Collectively, the immunogenicity data (haemagglutinin inhibition test, ELISA and cytokine tests for the detection of memory T cells) support the use of a single dose of the pandemic H1N1 LAIV in 12-60 year olds. The outcome of the studies showed no significant adverse reactions attributable to the vaccine, and suggests that the vaccine is as safe and immunogenic as seasonal influenza vaccines. Importantly, it was clearly demonstrated that reliance on the HAI assay alone is not recommended for testing LAIV. To date, via the licence agreement with WHO, the H1N1 LAIV has been transferred to the Government Pharmaceutical Organization in Thailand, the Serum Institute of India, and the Zhejiang Tianyuan Bio-Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. in China.

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