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Family & Relationships Universal Flu Vaccine 'Could Be Available In Two Years'

07:35  27 march  2018
07:35  27 march  2018 Source:   huffingtonpost.co.uk

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A universal flu vaccine that protects people from all strains of flu for up to a decade could be available on the NHS in as little as two years . The injection, called FLU -v, created by the British company Imutex

A universal flu vaccine is flu vaccine that is effective against all influenza virus strains regardless of the virus subtype or viral genetic drift. Hence it should not require modification from year to year . As of 2017, there was no approved universal flu vaccine for general use

  Universal Flu Vaccine 'Could Be Available In Two Years' © Natali_Mis via Getty Images A universal flu vaccine that protects people from all strains of flu for up to a decade could be available on the NHS in as little as two years. 

The injection, called FLU-v, created by the British company Imutex, has been found to be more effective than other treatments in development in recent UK trials. 

In a study involving 123 participants aged 18 to 60 who were exposed to the H1N1 swine flu virus, 80% were prevented from contracting the virus after having the injection. 

The news comes after 2018 was called the ‘most significant flu season’ since 2011’, with 120 people dying from the virus in the UK by January.

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The company, which just announced it's scored US.6 million from investors including Alphabet Inc.'s venture capital arm GV, has already started a two - year Phase 2 clinical trial on their universal flu vaccine . "This could be a game-changer in a very competitive market."

Influenza vaccines , also known as flu shots or flu jabs, are vaccines that protect against infection by Influenza viruses. A new version of the vaccine is developed twice a year , as the Influenza virus rapidly changes.

Seasonal flu usually circulates for several weeks each year. The intensity of circulation depends upon the underlying population immunity, the circulating viruses and external factors such as the weather. It is an unpredictable virus and it is not possible to anticipate how flu levels will progress each year.

The latest vaccine is expected to cost between £20 to £50 per person, but will protect against all strains of flu and will only need to be given every five to 10 years.

Related: Vitamin C For A Cold Is So 2012 (provided by Wochit News)

It works by stimulating an immune response in the body, in contrast to seasonal flu vaccines currently available, which prevent infection through antibody protection.

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The researchers report the universal virus used for most common strains of influenza could be available shortly after large-scale trials are tested and deemed effective. "We may be able to begin efficacy trials of a broadly protective flu vaccine in three to five years ," Dr. Nabel said.

The development could help scientists in their bid to create a ' universal vaccine ' for the flu . Total flu protection? Revealed: George Michael ' was found unconscious in a bath after overdosing on party drug GHB' two years before he died.

For those who did contract flu after having the vaccine in the most recent trial, their symptoms were considered less severe than if they hadn’t have had the vaccine. 

Commenting on the results, Professor John Oxford, a leading flu expert at Queen Mary University of London, told the MailOnline: “I am enthusiastic about universal vaccines full-stop. It is recognised as being a good way forward.

“If one should have an effective universal flu vaccine, people could relax because you could have a dose of it and it would give years of protection against whichever virus is circulating.”

Imutex is a joint venture between two existing pharmaceutical companies, hVIVO and PepTcell Limited. Kym Denny, CEO of hVIVO, commented: “In the real world, ultimately, it is symptom reduction that is a clinically meaningful outcome if it can reduce the more severe flu disease, which is the concern and significant burden of healthcare systems across the world.

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This shortfall injected further momentum into the push to create a universal vaccine that protects against many flu types over time. Researchers hope to find a vaccine that can provide durable protection for all age groups against The researchers plan to have some results within two years .

A universal flu vaccine could be available as soon as 2014, if scientists have their way. That goal has eluded researchers for years , because different strains of the flu virus circulate each season, forcing scientists to predict upcoming strains and patients to get a new vaccine every fall.

“This is, to our knowledge, the first time a universal flu vaccine candidate has demonstrated statistically significant reduction in a symptom score in humans.

As a result, we believe FLU-v could be the most advanced universal flu vaccine candidate in development. With its potential for significant disease efficacy, broad protection against all flu strains, simplified manufacturing and the ability to be administered as a stand-alone vaccine - rather than in combination with traditional seasonal flu vaccine - FLU-v could help provide relief from flu to people across the globe.”

Related: 15 Simple Ways to Fend Off Colds and Flu (provided by Cheapism)

PREVENTIVE MEASURES: <p>No one is immune to being laid low during cold and flu season. Dry winter weather and enclosed spaces create breeding grounds for germs, and coming down with boost your immunity and stay healthy by following these painless and inexpensive tips.

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15 Simple Ways to Fend Off Colds and Flu

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Do You Need To Get An MMR Jab If You Didn't Have One As A Child? .
Adults across the UK have been urged to check if they’ve received the complete measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR), particularly if they plan to travel abroad.  Between 1 January 2018 and 18 June 2018 there were 643 confirmed measles cases in England, Public Health England (PHE) has warned, with more across the rest of Europe.  “We often think about what travel-related vaccines we might need before going on holiday, but it’s also important to check that we are up to date with routine vaccinations like MMR,” Dr Mary Ramsay, head of immunisation at PHE, said.

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