Vaccines and Global Health: The Week in Review 13 Jan 2018

Vaccines and Global Health: The Week in Review is a weekly digest  summarizing news, events, announcements, peer-reviewed articles and research in the global vaccine ethics and policy space. Content is aggregated from key governmental, NGO, international organization and industry sources, key peer-reviewed journals, and other media channels. This summary proceeds from the broad base of themes and issues monitored by the Center for Vaccine Ethics & Policy in its work: it is not intended to be exhaustive in its coverage. You are viewing the blog version of our weekly digest, typically comprised of between 30 and 40 posts below all dated with the current issue date

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 pdf version A pdf of the current issue is available here: Vaccines and Global Health_The Week in Review_13 Jan 2018

– blog edition: comprised of the approx. 35+ entries posted below.

– Twitter:  Readers can also follow developments on twitter: @vaxethicspolicy.
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– Links:  We endeavor to test each link as we incorporate it into any post, but recognize that some links may become “stale” as publications and websites reorganize content over time. We apologize in advance for any links that may not be operative. We believe the contextual information in a given post should allow retrieval, but please contact us as above for assistance if necessary.

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David R. Curry, MS
Executive Director
Center for Vaccine Ethics and Policy

 

Milestones :: Perspectives

Milestones :: Perspectives
 
IAVI  [to 13 January 2018]
https://www.iavi.org/
January 11, 2018
Bonnie Mathieson: Awesome, Fearless and Witty
Reflections from Colleagues Pat Fast, Mark Feinberg, Margaret McCluskey, and Bill Snow
We celebrate the life, and mourn the loss, of Bonnie Mathieson who left her career as a laboratory scientist to guide HIV vaccine research as a scientific administrator at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Bonnie had insatiable interest in HIV and immune response to the virus and an unwavering belief that immune-mediated protection against HIV infection was possible. Joining in this fight when the AIDS vaccine effort was in its infancy, Bonnie spent three decades doing everything in her power to speed the arrival of a vaccine, working at the Division of AIDS at NIAID and later at the NIH Office of AIDS Research. She enthusiastically supported, advised, critiqued and cajoled co-workers in government and academe to promote vaccine research and helped the scientist–especially young ones–find the right collaborations to carry out well-planned and well-funded research. She was endlessly interested in the people doing the work, and many of us can point to a time when she helped us overcome a barrier and go on to succeed. Bonnie was particularly supportive toward women scientists, some young, some not-so-young, when they ran into barriers that hindered their progress…

 
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Here’s why global health suffers in a fractured world
Seth Berkley CEO, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance
10 Jan 2018  – World Economic Forum Annual Meeting
The world is today more fractured than at any time since the Cold War, with a new fortress narrative now emerging. But is it really possible for countries to reap the benefits of globalization and shun the responsibilities that come with a globalized economy, while avoiding the consequences of doing so?

Globalism may have fallen out of favour with some, but the forces driving it are not likely to be so easily swayed. Formidable trends will continue to drive both globalization and globalism, and in doing so will bring new challenges that will threaten us all by, among other things, making it harder to prevent the spread of deadly infectious disease. So, in the face of such growing threats to global health security, it should become increasingly clear that putting national interests first doesn’t always mean focusing all your attention at home.

The fact is that the same aspects of the modern world that have helped to make global trade and economic growth possible have also helped promote some of the biggest challenges we are likely to face in the 21st century. Climate change, population growth, human migration and urbanization are just some examples. All have an impact on global health security.
Just as it is possible to have dinner in Nairobi, breakfast in London and lunch in New York, you can now also order goods from halfway around the world and receive them within a timeframe shorter than the incubation period of many infectious diseases.

With more than a billion people travelling outside their country or region every year, it has never been easier for viruses to move around the world. We saw this recently, first with the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, which spread to 10 countries infecting nearly 29,000 people globally, killing 11,000 of them; and then with Zika, which affected more than 80 countries and territories, resulting in more than 220,000 confirmed cases.

If we want to keep the bugs at bay, border security and immigration control will only get us so far. Instead we need to look at how we can prevent outbreaks in the first place. That means embracing globalism by investing in global health to help to strengthen national health systems, disease surveillance and routine immunization in poor countries. By recognizing that infectious disease is not some far away exotic issue, but a global problem, and by sharing the responsibility for its prevention, diagnosis and control, the whole world will be a lot safer.

The problem is, thanks to the combined effects of population growth, climate change, migration and conflict, global health security is likely to become more challenging in the years to come. Land degradation, rising sea levels, famine and conflict will continue to drive people from their homes and towards cities, with megacities like Mexico City and Lagos becoming increasingly common in some of the poorest parts of the world. Without action, the effects of this on global health security could be profound, because as urban density increases, so too can the risk of urban epidemics.

More people living in less space can put greater strain on already limited sanitation resources, and this can create a fertile breeding ground for waterborne infectious disease and the insects spreading them. At the same time, the sheer scale of cities, and the number of vulnerable people living in them, has the potential to overstretch vaccine and antimicrobial supplies, limiting our ability to prevent or respond to outbreaks.

This is not just a hypothetical scenario. In 2016, we saw precisely this play out with the world’s largest yellow fever outbreak in three decades in Angola’s capital Luanda, which spread across Angola and to two other African countries, including threatening Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). During this outbreak, vaccine shortages made the situation so desperate that the World Health Organization and UNICEF had to resort to recommending fractional dosing in Kinshasa as part of its response, administering one-fifth of a normal dose to people.

We got lucky, and not just in averting major urban epidemics in two overcrowded capital cities, but also in preventing the spread of yellow fever to Asia. No one really knows why yellow fever has never taken hold in Asia, but with 1.8 billion unvaccinated people living in a region where the mosquito responsible for transmitting the disease – Aedes aegypti – is endemic, and with no cure for the disease, the potential of it doing so is a huge concern (particularly, when two other Aedes transmitted infections – dengue and chikungunya – are causing major epidemics).

With a large Chinese workforce in Angola, 11 yellow fever cases did manage to reach China, but were thankfully contained and the virus spread no further. And despite facing further vaccine shortages when another large outbreak occurred just a few months later in Brazil, the global health community rallied and was able to prevent this too from turning into an urban epidemic. But these were close calls.

As the global population continues to grow and become ever more urban, it is important that we are prepared for what it will bring. While it will almost certainly help boost globalization by opening up new markets, without a continued global effort to prevent outbreaks wherever they occur, through routine immunization and strengthened health systems, then such close calls could become full blown pandemics threatening us all with catastrophic human and economic consequences.
 
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Who will answer the call in the next outbreak? Drug makers feel burned by string of vaccine pleas
STAT News | 11 January 2018
By Helen Branswell
Every few years an alarming disease launches a furious, out-of-the-blue attack on people, triggering a high-level emergency response. SARS. The H1N1 flu pandemic. West Nile and Zika. The nightmarish West African Ebola epidemic.

In nearly each case, major vaccine producers have risen to the challenge, setting aside their day-to-day profit-making activities to try to meet a pressing societal need. With each successive crisis, they have done so despite mounting concerns that the threat will dissipate and with it the demand for the vaccine they are racing to develop.

Now, manufacturers are expressing concern about their ability to afford these costly disruptions to their profit-seeking operations. As a result, when the bat-signal next flares against the night sky, there may not be anyone to respond

GSK has made a corporate decision that while it wants to help in public health emergencies, it cannot continue to do so in the way it has in the past. Sanofi Pasteur has said its attempt to respond to Zika has served only to mar the company’s reputation. Merck has said while it is committed to getting its Ebola vaccine across the finish line it will not try to develop a vaccine that protects against other strains of Ebola and the related Marburg virus.

Drug makers “have very clearly articulated that … the current way of approaching this — to call them during an emergency and demand that they do this and that they reallocate resources, disrupt their daily operations in order to respond to these events — is completely unsustainable,” said Richard Hatchett, CEO of CEPI, an organization set up after the Ebola crisis to fund early-stage development of vaccines to protect against emerging disease threats.

Hatchett and others who plan for disease emergencies worry that, without the involvement of these types of companies, there will be no emergency response vaccines.

“The only real expertise in the world to make these vaccines in a quantity and a safety environment is in the private sector,” said Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Diseases Research and Policy. “If the private sector isn’t fully engaged and involved, it’s a show stopper.”

Nearly all the major pharmaceutical companies that work on these vaccines have found themselves holding the bag after at least one of these outbreaks.

GSK stepped up during the Ebola crisis, but has since essentially shelved the experimental vaccine it once raced to try to test and license. Two other vaccines — Merck’s and one being developed by Janssen, the vaccines division of Johnson & Johnson — are still slowly wending their ways through difficult and costly development processes. Neither company harbors any hope of earning back in sales the money it spent on development.

A number of flu vaccine manufacturers were left on the hook with ordered but unpaid for vaccine during the mild 2009 H1N1 flu pandemic. By the time the vaccine was ready — after the peak of the outbreak — public fear of the new flu had subsided. Many people didn’t want the vaccine, and some countries refused to take their full orders. GSK, Sanofi Pasteur, and Novartis — which has since shed its vaccines operation — produced flu vaccine in that pandemic.

Dr. Rip Ballou, who heads the U.S. research and development center for GSK Global Vaccines, told STAT it’s not in the “company’s DNA” to say “no” to pleas to respond to appeals in an emergency. But the way it has responded in the past is no longer tenable.

“We do not want to have these activities compete with in-house programs,” said Ballou. “And our learnings from Ebola, from pandemic flu, from SARS previously, is that it’s very disruptive and that’s not the way that we want to do business going forward.”

GSK has proposed using a facility it has in Rockville, Md., as a production plant for vaccines needed in emergencies, but the funding commitments that would be needed to turn that idea into reality haven’t materialized.

And as Ebola and Zika recede ever further in the rearview mirror, the chances governments and philanthropy institutions will seize on this type of paradigm-shifting proposal appear to be slight. The threat of new outbreaks is still top of mind for organizations in this area, like BARDA and CEPI — the U.S. government’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority and the Oslo, Norway-based Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations. But there appears to be little discussion of the issue among governments facing perennial funding shortfalls.

“The people that are concerned about this haven’t lost focus,” Ballou said. “We’re still very concerned about it. I know BARDA hasn’t lost focus. CEPI hasn’t lost focus. But the rest of the world probably has.”

Sanofi Pasteur has also taken several enormous hits in the successive rounds of disease emergency responses. In the early 2000s, the company worked on a West Nile virus vaccine. Though the disease still causes hundreds of cases of severe illness in the U.S. every year and is estimated to have been responsible for over 2,000 deaths from 1999 to 2016, public fear abated, taking with it the prospects for sales of a vaccine. Sanofi eventually pulled the plug.

In 2016, Sanofi was the only major manufacturer to commit to trying to make a Zika vaccine on an expedited basis. But BARDA, which had been helping to fund the work, told Sanofi last year that it would not support the company’s Phase 3 trial – the large and expensive study needed to prove a vaccine works — and instead backed an effort by Takeda Pharmaceuticals.

At the same time, the company bore the brunt of a barrage of criticism for not publicly committing to a low-price guarantee for developing countries. Facing horrible PR and no sales prospects, Sanofi announced late last summer that it was out.

“It was a bruising experience,” admitted John Shiver, Sanofi’s head of vaccine research and development. “Honestly, we really were trying to be good citizens.”

As was the case with Zika, emergency vaccine development efforts are often at least partially funded from government coffers. But Hatchett said the sacrifices of pharmaceutical companies in outbreak response work are still underappreciated.

“If you look at the performance of the vaccine companies, it’s hard to think of an example going back 30 or 40 or 50 years where they haven’t stepped up to the plate. I think their record of corporate social responsibility is a story that they don’t get nearly enough credit for, given the risks and what they take on and how little they get out of responding,” he said.

Even if governments help fund vaccine work, money can dry up and costs can add up. Scientists reassigned to work on emergency vaccines have to put aside other work that their company — and its shareholders — hope will earn profits.

“There are opportunity costs, especially if you’re trying to do something fast. I mean, we put the equivalent of a couple of programs worth of people on Zika,” Shiver said. “They were all working on high-priority projects for us and we switched them off those projects. … And those programs slowed down or stopped.”

Shiver said particularly problematic for vaccine manufacturers is the fact that it is extraordinarily difficult to run the clinical trials needed to persuade regulatory agencies that emergency vaccines are safe and effective. Conducting research during a crisis is notoriously tough and, with diseases like these, after outbreaks end, there’s typically no way to mount a standard Phase 3 trial.

In an emergency, regulatory agencies may be willing to bend some rules. But once the crisis subsides, they revert to normal operating procedures — as Merck has found out as it tries to persuade regulators to accept data from an innovative ring-vaccination trial conducted on its Ebola vaccine.

“This is sort of ahuman nature problem. People pay attention to the burning house, and maybe not the one that’s got bad wiring, right, that’s down the street,” Shiver said.

Finding a way that allows vaccine makers to help without sustaining these kinds of operational costs is critical to the success of future disease outbreak responses, experts say. Because the reality is that even if a government or academic laboratory designs and tests a promising vaccine for a dangerous pathogen, someone has to make it — and potentially make large amounts of it.

“These repeated incidences where people were left hanging is going to make it a lot harder for companies to be able to make the case internally that they should get involved. And if that happens — which I think it is happening — the world is going to be in a much riskier place,” said Dr. Mark Feinberg, president of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative and formerly Merck’s chief science officer.

Mapping the anti-vaccination movement on Facebook

Information, Communication & Society
Published online: 27 Dec 2017
Original Articles
Mapping the anti-vaccination movement on Facebook
Naomi Smith & Tim Graham
Pages 1-18
ABSTRACT
Over the past decade, anti-vaccination rhetoric has become part of the mainstream discourse regarding the public health practice of childhood vaccination. These utilise social media to foster online spaces that strengthen and popularise anti-vaccination discourses. In this paper, we examine the characteristics of and the discourses present within six popular anti-vaccination Facebook pages. We examine these large-scale datasets using a range of methods, including social network analysis, gender prediction using historical census data, and generative statistical models for topic analysis (Latent Dirichlet allocation). We find that present-day discourses centre around moral outrage and structural oppression by institutional government and the media, suggesting a strong logic of ‘conspiracy-style’ beliefs and thinking. Furthermore, anti-vaccination pages on Facebook reflect a highly ‘feminised’ movement ‒ the vast majority of participants are women. Although anti-vaccination networks on Facebook are large and global in scope, the comment activity sub-networks appear to be ‘small world’. This suggests that social media may have a role in spreading anti-vaccination ideas and making the movement durable on a global scale.

Emergencies

Emergencies
 
POLIO
Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC)
Polio this week as of 10 January 2018 [GPEI]
:: New on www.polioeradication.org: We join Dr Urs Herzog, polio eradicator, National PolioPlus Advocacy Advisor for Rotary Switzerland and polio survivor himself, as he explains the financial costs of the programme and why it is critical that we eradicate every last trace of the virus.

:: Summary of newly-reported viruses this week:
Afghanistan:  Three new wild poliovirus type 1 (WPV1) positive environmental samples have been reported, one collected from Kandahar, one from Hilmand, and one from Nangarhar provinces.
Pakistan: Four new WPV1 positive environmental samples have been reported, three collected from Sindh province, and one from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
Democratic Republic of the Congo: Advance notifications have been received of five cases of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus type 2 (cVDPV2). These will be confirmed in next week’s data reporting.

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Syria cVDPV2 outbreak situation report 29, 9 January 2018
Situation update 9 January 2018
:: No new cases of cVDPV2 were reported this week. The total number of cVDPV2 cases remains 74.
:: The most recent case (by date of onset of paralysis) is 21 September 2017 from Boukamal district, Deir Ez-Zor governorate.
:: Preparations continue at national and governorate levels for the upcoming first round of the second phase of the outbreak response. mOPV2 and IPV will be used in two immunization rounds through house-to-house and fixed centre vaccination.
:: mOPV2 stocks have arrived in Beirut, Lebanon, for onward transportation to Damascus. The shipment process for IPV is underway.
 

WHO Grade 3 Emergencies  [to 13 January 2018]
The Syrian Arab Republic
:: Syria cVDPV2 outbreak situation report 29, 9 January 2018
[See Polio above for detail]

Yemen
:: Weekly epidemiology bulletin, 25–31 December 2017
Cumulative figures
-The cumulative total from 27 April 2017 to 31 December 2017 is 1,019,044 suspected cholera cases and 2,237 associated deaths,
(CFR 0.22%), 1094 have been confirmed by culture.
– 59.3 % of death were severe cases at admission
– The total proportion of severe cases among the suspected cases is 16.9%
– The national attack rate is 370 per 10,000. The five governorates with the highest cumulative attack rates per 10,000 remain  Amran (870), Al Mahwit (824), Al Dhale’e (644), Hajjah (498) and Abyan (494).
– Children under 5 years old represent 28.6% of total suspected cases.
– In total, 25,889 rapid diagnostic tests (RDT) have been performed which represents 24.3% coverage.
– 2,651 cultures have been performed which represents 25.4% coverage.
– The last positive culture was on 19 Dec 2017 in Al-Sabeen distric in Amanat Al-Asimah
– 70 districts did not report any suspected case the last three consecutive 3 weeks
Governorate and District level
– At governorate level, the trend from W50-W52 decrease or was stable in all governorates except (Sana’a governorate (+25%),
Hajjah governorate (+16%), Sada’a (+17%) .
Trends
– The weekly number of cases is decreasing for the 16 consecutive weeks.
– The weekly proportion of severe cases has significantly decreased representing now 10% of the admitted cases.
Week 52
– 9,169 suspected cases and 4 associated deaths were reported
– 11 % are severe cases
– 740 RDTs were performed, 136 were positive
– 0 Positive culture

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WHO Grade 2 Emergencies  [to 13 January 2018]
Myanmar 
:: Weekly Situation Report # 9
Date of issue: 6 January 2018; Period covered: 31 December – 6 January
KEY HIGHLIGHTS
…As of 6 January 2018, a total of 3 523 cases clinically suspected with diphtheria and 58 laboratory confirmed cases (out of 185 cases tested) have been reported. 104 clinically suspected cases were admitted at diphtheria treatment facilities on 6 January 2018. A total of 30 deaths have been recorded so far. The last reported death was on 2 January.
…Preparations are underway for the second round of Penta/Td vaccination for Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals (FDMN), which will occur in January.
…A vaccination campaign targeting children in the host community was held on 02 January during free book distribution day across 104 schools in Ukhia. A total of 29 377 children were vaccinated – 6 514 children 6 weeks to under 7 were vaccinated with pentavalent vaccine and 22 823 children 7 to 15 years were vaccinated with Td.
…The upgraded EWARS system was launched on 1 January. Training is ongoing for DGHS representatives, agency focal

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UN OCHA – L3 Emergencies
The UN and its humanitarian partners are currently responding to three ‘L3’ emergencies. This is the global humanitarian system’s classification for the response to the most severe, large-scale humanitarian crises. 
Syrian Arab Republic
:: Syria: UN Humanitarian Chief sees first hand “colossal toll that the brutal and sustained hostilities have taken”  11 January, 2018
:: Health Cluster Weekly Situation Report: Whole of Syria, Week 2, 5-11 January 2018
:: Turkey | Syria: Recent Developments in Northwestern Syria (as of 10 January 2018)

Yemen 
:: Statement by the Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick,on the vital importance of keeping Yemen’s entry points open, 11 January 2018 [EN/AR]
 
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UN OCHA – Corporate Emergencies
When the USG/ERC declares a Corporate Emergency Response, all OCHA offices, branches and sections provide their full support to response activities both at HQ and in the field.
ROHINGYA CRISIS
:: WASH Sector Cox’s Bazar Situation Report, 13 January 2018

Ethiopia   
:: 11 Jan 2018 – Ethiopia Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 44 | 25 Dec. 2017 – 7 Jan. 2018
 
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Editor’s Note:
We will cluster these recent emergencies as below and continue to monitor the WHO webpages for updates and key developments.

MERS-CoV [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.who.int/emergencies/mers-cov/en/
DONs
Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Malaysia 8 January 2018 [one case]
Zika virus  [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.who.int/csr/disease/zika/en/
No new announcements identified.
[See NIH announcement below]
 
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WHO & Regional Offices [to 13 January 2018]

UN Environment and WHO agree to major collaboration on environmental health risks
News release
10 January 2018 | Nairobi – UN Environment and WHO have agreed a new, wide-ranging collaboration to accelerate action to curb environmental health risks that cause an estimated 12.6 million deaths a year.
Today in Nairobi, Mr Erik Solheim, head of UN Environment, and Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, signed an agreement to step up joint actions to combat air pollution, climate change and antimicrobial resistance, as well as improve coordination on waste and chemicals management, water quality, and food and nutrition issues. The collaboration also includes joint management of the BreatheLife advocacy campaign to reduce air pollution for multiple climate, environment and health benefits.
This represents the most significant formal agreement on joint action across the spectrum of environment and health issues in over 15 years…

Highlights
Short period of postoperative bladder catheterization effective for repair of simple urinary fistula
January 2017 – WHO has issued a new recommendation on the length of bladder catheterization following surgical repair of a simple obstetric urinary fistula. Currently the length of catheterization is not standard and ranges from 5 to 42 days.

WHO supports the immunization of 1 million people against cholera in Zambia
January 2018 – The Government of Zambia has launched a campaign on Wednesday (January 10) to vaccinate residents of Lusaka against cholera with support from WHO and partners. Two million doses of the oral cholera vaccine from the Gavi-funded global stockpile were delivered to the southern African country in January, enough to immunize 1 million people.

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Weekly Epidemiological Record, 12 January 2018, vol. 93, 02 (pp. 9–16)
:: Detection of influenza viruses by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction: WHO external quality assessment programme summary analysis, 2017

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WHO Regional Offices
Selected Press Releases, Announcements
WHO African Region AFRO
:: WHO Director General Dr Tedros visits Kenya  12 January 2018
:: Newly appointed NAFDAC DG seeks to strengthen partnership with WHO Nigeria  12 January 2018
:: The Ministry of Health reiterates its commitment to ending the cholera epidemic through a multi-sectoral response as the oral cholera vaccination commences in Lusaka. 11 January 2018
:: WHO supports the immunization of 1 million people against cholera in Zambia 10 January 2018
:: South Sudan investigates the suspected Viral Haemorrhagic Fever outbreak in Yirol East, Eastern Lakes State  10 January 2018
:: Hexavalent vaccine: less injections and more protection for babies  09 January 2018
:: Listeriosis outbreak in South Africa  09 January 2018
:: Community engagement to find solutions to the ongoing Hepatitis E Virus outbreak in Windhoek informal settlements  08 January 2018
 
WHO European Region EURO
::  WHO/Europe launches online course for clinicians on prescribing and using antibiotics wisely 11-01-2018
:: Turning the tide on obesity and unhealthy diets in the WHO European Region – new publication presents novel insights and effective solutions 10-01-2018

WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region EMRO
:: One million children in Puntland and 4.2 million nationwide vaccinated against measles
Mogadishu, Somalia, 7 January 2018 –  he Ministry of Health of the Federal Government of Somalia, in partnership with WHO and UNICEF, today concluded a 5-day national measles campaign, targeting 1 million children aged 6 months to 10 years in Puntland, and 4.2 million across the country.
In 2017, amidst a drought emergency, a total of 23 002 suspected measles cases were reported, which is alarmingly high compared to previous years. Among these cases, 83% were children under 10 years of age…

WHO Western Pacific Region
:: More action needed to achieve universal health coverage in Asia and the Pacific by global deadline  13 December 2017
 

Announcements

Announcements

 
Gavi [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.gavi.org/library/news/press-releases/
09 January 2018
Cyrus Ardalan becomes new Chair of IFFIm Board
Ardalan succeeds René Karsenti, who oversaw nearly US$ 2.5 billion in bond issuances, entry into Sukuk markets.
 
 
GHIT Fund   [to 13 January 2018]
https://www.ghitfund.org/
GHIT was set up in 2012 with the aim of developing new tools to tackle infectious diseases that devastate the world’s poorest people. Other funders include six Japanese pharmaceutical ·
2018.01.10    News
Announcement of New Board Member
The GHIT Fund today announced that Mr. Daikichi Momma, Special Researcher at the Policy Research Institute, Ministry of Finance, and Former Director-General of the International Bureau, Ministry of Finance, has been appointed as a new member of the Board of Directors of the GHIT Fund.
 
 
Hilleman Laboratories   [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.hillemanlabs.org/
Date: 09/01/2018
Hilleman Laboratories partners with innovative Future Vaccine Manufacturing
Hilleman Laboratories, an equal joint-venture partnership between MSD and Wellcome Trust, is honored to be one of the key partners of the new Future Vaccine Manufacturing Hub led by Imperial College London. The hub has been established to increase immunisation coverage across the globe and improve the response to disease outbreaks through the rapid and cost-effective deployment of vaccines. £10 million of funding has been granted by the UK Department for Health, and will be managed by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)…
 
 
IFFIm
http://www.iffim.org/library/news/press-releases/
09 January 2018
Cyrus Ardalan becomes new Chair of IFFIm Board
Ardalan succeeds René Karsenti, who oversaw nearly US$ 2.5 billion in bond issuances, entry into Sukuk markets.

IVAC  [to 13 January 2018]
https://www.jhsph.edu/research/centers-and-institutes/ivac/index.html
January 9, 2018
5 Reasons the Global Gap in Rotavirus Vaccine Access is Shrinking
This article was originally posted on the Impatient Optimists Blog on January 9, 2018.
45 million children have access today, millions more expected to gain access to vaccine in 2018
 
 
IVI   [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.ivi.int/
January 8, 2018
Euvichol-Plus®, ‘the world’s first plastic vial oral cholera vaccine,’ ready for global use
:: First shipment of new OCV from EuBiologics in South Korea to Zambia and Somalia from January 5 follows WHO approval in August 2017
:: Innovative packaging makes vaccine more affordable and easier to use
:: Up to 50 million doses in production to supply the global market
:: Developed by global public-private partnership to advance vaccines for global public health
SEOUL, January 8, 2018 — ‘Euvichol-Plus®’, the world’s first oral cholera vaccine (OCV) presented in plastic tube vials, is now available for purchase by international procurement agencies and United Nations (UN) agencies following the first shipment of 2.45 million doses to Zambia and Somalia from January 5. The vaccine, produced by EuBiologics, a South Korean pharmaceutical company, was prequalified by the World Health Organization (WHO) in August 2017.
Euvichol-Plus® is a low-cost oral cholera vaccine presented in innovative plastic packaging, and is an improved version of Euvichol®, an OCV presented in glass vials also produced by EuBiologics and WHO-approved in 2015. The new plastic packaging reduces the vial’s volume by nearly 30 percent and weight by over 50 percent, allowing easier transport and distribution of the vaccine and waste management. Compared with conventional glass vials, the plastic packaging is easier to open and administer.
Notably, Euvichol-Plus, priced at about $1.30 per dose, is 25 percent cheaper than Euvichol, which will enable aid and vaccine delivery organizations to procure more vaccines at the same cost. If Euvichol-Plus had existed just one year ago – and had been shipped in place of Euvichol – more than US $2.3 million would have been saved. These cost savings could have been used to purchase nearly 1.8 million more doses of Euvichol-Plus…
 
 
MSF/Médecins Sans Frontières  [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/news-stories/press/press-releases
Press release
Syria: Demining Urgently Needed in Raqqa as MSF Treats 33 Blast Victims in One Week
RAQQA, SYRIA/AMSTERDAM/NEW YORK, JANUARY 12, 2018—Teams from Doctors Without Borders/ Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) treated 33 patients with blast injuries in Raqqa city, Syria, during the first week of 2018, underlining the urgent need for demining in and around the war-torn city.

Press release
MSF: End of Temporary Protected Status for Salvadorans Puts Lives at Risk
January 08, 2018
The decision by the Trump Administration to end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for approximately 200,000 Salvadorans living in the US threatens to directly endanger their lives, the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said today
 
 
NIH  [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases
January 12, 2018
The coming of age of gene therapy: A review of the past and path forward
— No longer the future of medicine, gene therapy is part of present-day clinical treatment.
After three decades of hopes tempered by setbacks, gene therapy—the process of treating a disease by modifying a person’s DNA—is no longer the future of medicine, but is part of the present-day clinical treatment toolkit. The Jan. 12 issue of the journal Science provides an in-depth and timely review of the key developments that have led to several successful gene therapy treatments for patients with serious medical conditions.

January 11, 2018
NIH study supports use of short-term HIV treatment interruption in clinical trials
— Findings may aid design of trials to assess strategies to control HIV without drugs.
 
 
PATH  [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.path.org/news/index.php
Press release | January 08, 2018
PATH names Elaine Gibbons vice president for Global Engagement and Communications
Global leader combines more than 15 years of experience with multisector partnerships, marketing and strategy with a demonstrated passion for human rights and international development

Sabin Vaccine Institute  [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.sabin.org/updates/pressreleases
January 8, 2018
Sabin to tackle pandemic flu
WASHINGTON, D.C. –The Sabin Vaccine Institute, a non-profit global health organization dedicated to enabling vaccine innovation, making vaccines more accessible and expanding immunization across the globe, is pleased to announce a new three-year $6.6 million grant to help speed the development of next generation influenza vaccines and support related immunization issues. This work is generously supported by the Page Family Donor Advised Fund.
 

UNAIDS [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.unaids.org/en
12 January 2018
UNAIDS and Australia strengthen ties to end AIDS

12 January 2018
UNAIDS mourns the death of Jimmie Earl Perry
Jimmie Earl Perry, the first UNAIDS National Goodwill Ambassador for South Africa, has died.

10 January 2018
UN urges comprehensive approach to sexuality education
Close to 10 years after its first edition, a fully updated International Technical Guidance on Sexuality Education published today by UNESCO advocates quality comprehensive sexuality education to promote health and well-being, respect for human rights and gender equality, and empowers children and young people to lead healthy, safe and productive lives…

UNICEF  [to 13 January 2018]
https://www.unicef.org/media/
9 January 2018
Geneva Palais Briefing Note: The situation of children in Rakhine State, Myanmar
GENEVA, 9 January 2018 – This is a summary of what was said by Marixie Mercado, UNICEF spokesperson in Geneva – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at today’s press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

Wellcome Trust  [to 13 January 2018]
https://wellcome.ac.uk/news
News / Published: 10 January 2018
Investing in medical research yields healthy returns
Every £1 invested in medical research delivers a return equivalent to 25p every year, a new study shows.
Through taxes and donations, the government, charities and the public invest significant sums of money into medical research. The peer-reviewed ‘What’s it worth?’ study shows that this investment delivers outstanding benefits for the economy, as well as for people’s health.

::::::
 
BIO    [to 13 January 2018]
https://www.bio.org/insights/press-release
Jan 9 2018
BIO Applauds Support for Innovation in Trump Administration Task Force Report
 “Biotechnology Sector is a Driver of the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’”
Washington, D.C. (January 9, 2018) – The Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) is applauding a new report from the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity, which encourages growth and continued innovation in America’s biotechnology sector…
:: Report pdf: https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/documents/rural-prosperity-report.pdf

 
PhRMA    [to 13 January 2018]
http://www.phrma.org/press-room
January 12, 2018
ICYMI: Why 2017 medicine approvals matter
This week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) released its 2017 New Drug Therapy Approvals report. Last year marked an extraordinary milestone for the biopharmaceutical industry and the FDA with major medicine approvals. According to the report, the FDA approved 46 new molecular entities for a range of disease states — the highest number of new medications in 21 years.
Of the 46 new medicines, 15 are first in class treatments, including the first treatment approved for the primary progressive form of multiple sclerosis and a medicine that provides an entirely new way of treating severe eczema. The agency also approved 10 biological therapeutics through the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research.
Other notable approved medicines include a treatment for Parkinson’s, the first in more than 10 years, along with the first drug for the treatment of patients with ALS in 22 years. Cancer treatment also made great strides in 2017, with the approval of 16 oncology medications. And significantly, a new era of cell and regenerative medicine brought the approval of the first gene therapies

Industry Watch   [to 13 January 2018]
:: GSK receives FDA approval for expanded indication for FLUARIX® QUADRIVALENT (Influenza Vaccine) for persons 6 months and older
Jan 12, 2018, – QUADRIVALENT (Influenza Vaccine) to include use in persons 6 months and older. Prior to this, the vaccine was only approved for active immunization against influenza A subtype viruses and type B viruses, in persons 3 years of age and older.

Journal Watch

Journal Watch

   Vaccines and Global Health: The Week in Review continues its weekly scanning of key peer-reviewed journals to identify and cite articles, commentary and editorials, books reviews and other content supporting our focus on vaccine ethics and policy. Journal Watch is not intended to be exhaustive, but indicative of themes and issues the Center is actively tracking. We selectively provide full text of some editorial and comment articles that are specifically relevant to our work. Successful access to some of the links provided may require subscription or other access arrangement unique to the publisher.

If you would like to suggest other journal titles to include in this service, please contact David Curry at: david.r.curry@centerforvaccineethicsandpolicy.org