June 30, 2006

Clinical trial set to test new weapon in flu vaccine arsenal

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Tadashi Inagami, Ph.D., internationally recognized for his decades of hypertension research, has been a cornerstone of Vanderbilt’s biochemistry program for 40 years.
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Clinical trial set to test new weapon in flu vaccine arsenal

Hoping to help influenza vaccine manufacturers gain a better handle on vaccine availability for the coming flu season, Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers in the Division of Pediatric Clinical Research are participating in a clinical trial of a new influenza flu vaccine manufactured in Australia.

While similar to other foreign-made, already-approved flu vaccines, no flu vaccine manufactured in Australia is currently FDA approved for use in this country.

The vaccine being tested is manufactured by Commonwealth Serum Laboratories Ltd. of Melbourne, Australia.

For the last two years the United States has experienced an influenza vaccine shortage. In 2004 the shortage was so dire people lined up by the hundreds waiting outside health departments and shopping malls for any available shots.

The 2005 flu season was marred by an initial vaccine shortage due to gaps in the supply chain, which were eventually corrected late in the flu season.

“As health care professionals we've all experienced problems with flu vaccine availability for our patients during the last two flu seasons,” said Helen K. Keipp Talbot, M.D., a fellow in Infectious Diseases and an investigator involved with this study.

“We hope this study will help provide another available source of flu vaccine so we're ready when people wake up to the onset of this fall's flu season.”

Researchers are seeking 150 study participants ages 18-64. The study involves three visits; one for a brief health screening and vaccination, with two other visits for follow up blood draws. Participants will receive compensation for their time.

For those interested in participating in this study, please contact the Pediatric Clinical Research Office at 322-4FLU, or e-mail dixie.bradbury@vanderbilt.edu.