August 19, 2009

U.S. volunteers sign up for vaccine tests

The U.S. subsidiary of a British drug company is signing up volunteers for clinical trials of its swine flu vaccine, the company says.

MedImmune plans to run two U.S. vaccine trials simultaneously, one on children ages 3 to 17 and another for adults 18-49, Washington Business Journal reported Wednesday.

If everything works well, we are expected to have our first doses ready by the end of October, said Perla Copernik, a spokeswoman for MedImmune, a subsidiary of AstraZeneca PLC in London.

Copernick says the company is signing up 300 healthy individuals for each trial and hopes to have data from those trials within the month.

MedImmune is one of five companies nationwide that are helping to supply vaccines for the H1N1 virus.

The company says it expects to produce significantly more doses than were ordered by the U.S. Health and Human Services Department.