December 28, 2009

H1N1 Vaccines Recalled by AstraZeneca’s MedImmune Unit

H1N1 VaccineAstraZeneca’s MedImmune unit has issued a recall on 4.7 million doses of their nasal spray vaccine for H1N1. The recall was voluntary from the company, and they claim that the cause was due to potency concerns, not a failure or defect in the vaccine itself. The FDA says that those that have already been vaccinated with their medication do not need to be revaccinated.

MedImmune is not the first to recall H1N1 vaccines due to an error in the potency. Sanofi-Aventis recalled about 800,000 doses of their pediatric H1N1 vaccines, due to the potency not being high enough.
However, MedImmune’s recall is a bit different in nature than Sanofi-Aventis. MedImmune has recalled their vaccines not because of safety reasons, but as a precautionary measure. The company is worried about the potency in vaccines that are being stored. Apparently, some of the vaccines have diminished in terms of their strength and the company is worried about a significant part of their vaccine losing all of it potency. By recalling some of their product they can make sure a potent, working vaccine will be kept on the market, not a “watered-down” version.

There is no reason anyone should worry about this recall. If you haven’t already been vaccinated, now is still a great time to go and get yourself some added protection.

September 3, 2009

Back To School For Swine Flu

After the initial scare of H1N1, or Swine flu as it is more commonly known, we all breathed a sigh of relief. However, now with schools opening again, it may be time, once again, to start worrying, at least a little bit.

The virus survived over the entire length of the summer, with no signs that the heat even bothered it. With kids coming back to schools H1N1 might have just found its new breeding ground. Many schools are taking the initiative to prevent a Swine flu outbreak before it occurs, not trying to contain it after it spreads. Kudos to the school’s.

However, there is some potentially good, and bad news. I’ll start with the bad. If the virus mutates like some suspect it will, then many of our children, and even children across the globe, are in great danger come this fall. The good news is, if the disease doesn’t mutate which could be the outcome, then our kids may only face a minimal risk.

Studies suggest that the Swine flu virus may not need to mutate. In a test where both Swine flu and another virus were injected, Swine flu destroyed the other virus instead of merging with it. This could suggest that Swine flu feels superior and genetically does not need to mutate, at least not yet.

Here’s hoping that Swine flu will stay the way it is right now.

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