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August 19, 2009

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'Safe' flu vaccine hailed

A CHINESE company has completed clinical tests on a new influenza vaccine against the H1N1 virus, which proves to be "safe and effective."

Sinovac Biotech Company, a Beijing-based pharmaceutical company, said yesterday that it was the world's first H1N1 vaccine to undergo successful testing on humans.

Researchers from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute for the Control of Pharmaceutical and Biological Products conducted and supervised the test work in Beijing.

"Trials show that the first dose of vaccine triggers an immune response in the human body good enough to protect against the H1N1 virus strain," said Sinovac General Manager Yin Weidong.

Yin said there had been no severe adverse reactions reported after more than 1,600 volunteers aged above three received their first inoculations last Saturday.

"The occurrence of slight adverse reactions, such as pain at the site of injection, was similar to those of seasonal flu vaccines. This means the vaccine is safe," he said.

"This will lay a good foundation for future production and use of the vaccine, once we finish evaluations and obtain approval from the State Food and Drug Administration."


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