NIH: Phase II trials underway for H7N9 vaccine candidate

   NIH said Phase II clinical trials are underway for an investigational H7N9 avian influenza vaccine candidate. Researchers at nine sites nationwide have begun testing in two concurrent trials sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The trials “are designed to gather critical information about the safety of the candidate vaccine and the immune system responses it induces when administered at different dosages and with or without adjuvants, substances designed to boost the body’s immune response to vaccination.” Human cases of H7N9 influenza first emerged in China in February 2013, with the majority of reported infections occurring in the spring. As of Aug. 12, 135 confirmed human cases, including 44 deaths, have been reported by WHO. Most of these cases involved people who came into contact with infected poultry.

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