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Published On: Sat, Jan 19th, 2019

Universal Flu Vaccine: Senators ask NIAID for update

About one year ago, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health announced the details of a strategic plan for addressing the research areas essential to creating a safe and effective universal influenza vaccine.

Generic influenza virion
Image/CDC

This week, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and a half-dozen other Senators sent a letter to NIAID Director, Dr Anthony Fauci seeking an update on research initiatives to develop a universal flu vaccine.

“The sooner we can achieve a universal vaccine, the sooner we can reduce the relentless burden the flu places on American families each year,” write the Senators in their letter to NIAID. “Congress is committed to helping NIAID actualize that plan and achieve our mutual goal of putting a universal flu vaccine on the market as soon as possible.”

Flu Vaccine Act introduced by Sen. Edward Markey: For the creation of a universal influenza vaccine

In the letter, the Senators ask NIAID to respond to questions that include:

  • Please describe how NIAID has used, and intends to use, the dedicated funding provided by Congress in fiscal years 2018 and 2019 to help develop a universal flu vaccine.
  • What are the tangible goals NIAID and your partners in this endeavor hope to achieve this year to demonstrate progress in developing a universal flu vaccine?
  • Does NIAID intend to modify its strategic plan based on research progress made in the last year or anticipated progress in 2019?

Related: 

Flu vaccines: The shortcomings and the need for a ‘universal’ vaccine

Influenza: 80,000 people died from flu last season according to CDC estimates

Bill Gates warns of pandemic flu, commits millions for universal flu vaccine

Universal flu vaccine: University of Montana awarded $10 million contract to develop

Shingrix shortage: Is Schumer linking it to the shutdown?

 

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