Industry Watch [to 7 January 2017]

Industry Watch [to 7 January 2017]
:: Sanofi Pasteur and MSD end joint vaccines business in Europe
Paris, France – January 2, 2017 – Sanofi and its vaccines global business unit Sanofi Pasteur confirmed today the end of their vaccine joint-venture with MSD (known as Merck & Co. Inc., in the United States and Canada), Sanofi Pasteur MSD (SPMSD). Sanofi Pasteur and MSD will separately pursue their own vaccine strategies in Europe, integrating their respective European vaccines business into their operations. The change in operations took effect January 1, 2017.
Since its announcement in March 2016, the project has been managed in an open dialogue with the SPMSD employees, unions and relevant external stakeholders, in compliance with the applicable rules and regulations. During the transitional period following the announcement of the ending of the joint-venture, SPMSD and Sanofi and Merck, its shareholders, have been focused on a smooth and orderly transition while achieving their public healthcare goals and upholding their commitments to their employees, customers and business partners.
Each company will be able to define its own vaccines strategy to benefit public health and create value for patients, healthcare professionals, and payers. In November 2015, as part of its strategic roadmap 2020, Sanofi announced that it would reshape its portfolio, namely through sustained leadership in vaccines.

:: PaxVax Partners with National Institutes of Health and Department of Defense to Develop a New Virus-Like Particle Vaccine to Fight the Spread of Chikungunya
REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Jan. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — PaxVax announced today its partnership with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and United States Department of Defense (DoD) on its chikungunya vaccine program. According to the terms of the collaboration, PaxVax has in-licensed the NIH virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine technology for chikungunya with plans to bring the vaccine through full commercialization. NIH has already completed a phase 1 trial, and is currently assessing the vaccine in a phase 2 trial. For the past year, PaxVax has been working to develop a commercial manufacturing process and the necessary release assays. In addition to conducting its own trials, PaxVax will work with the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR)—a DoD biomedical research laboratory—to conduct an additional clinical trial to assess the potential advantages of an alum adjuvant in the vaccine formulation.

:: US FDA Grants Orphan Drug Designation to Yisheng Biopharma’s PIKA Rabies Vaccine
Jan 04, 2017
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted orphan drug designation for its lead vaccine candidate, PIKA rabies vaccine, which is an innovative rabies vaccine independently developed by Yisheng Biopharma, using its proprietary toll-like receptor-3 (TLR-3) activation technology.