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Salvage of Chiron flu vaccine unlikely

first_imgOct 9, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – Lester Crawford, acting director of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), appearing before the House Committee on Government Reform yesterday, said he was pessimistic about the possiblility that any of the 48 million doses of influenza vaccine expected in the United States from Chiron Corp. can be salvaged for use this flu season, according to new service reports. FDA experts remain in England this weekend to make the final determination, with visits planned to the Liverpool plant whose manufacturing license was revoked earlier in the week, effectively cancelling half the US’s supply.Several lots of Chiron’s vaccine, Fluvirin, were found to be contaminated, leading to suspension of Chiron’s manufacturing license by Britain’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). It came out this week that the organism implicated in the contamination is Serratia, a bacterium that lives in water, soil, plants, and animals and is not dangerous if encountered on environmental surfaces.When Serratia is harbored in medical equipment, however, it can cause illness and has been documented in numerous outbreaks (see link below for example of bronchoscope contamination). In commenting on the Chiron situation, Dr. Robert Belshe, director of the division of infectious diseases and immunology at St. Louis University, conjectured that it may have come from bottles, vials, or rubber stoppers, according to a Wall Street Journal story.Aventis Pasteur, the other large supplier of inactived flu vaccine for the United States, has said it will be able to supply 55.4 million doses of its Fluzone, according to an Associated Press story. This is somewhat more than it had originally commited to, but doses beyond that cannot be made in time for this year’s flu season.MedImmune, makers of FluMist, an inhalable form of flu vaccine, was asked by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention to provide more than the 1.5 million doses promised. The company has said it can provide nearly 1 million extra doses by late November, according to the Associated Press. The doses will come from already-produced frozen bulk vaccine.FluMist is FDA-approved for use only in people aged 5 to 49, which is the group least in need of vaccination. Four million doses were produced for the 2003-2004 flu season but much of that supply went unused, partly because of its higher cost in comparison with injected vaccines. MedImmune has cut the cost of FluMist this year and is also working on a new formulation it expects to be available in 2007.Public health officials are working quickly to track down the doses of vaccine that are already in the hands of distributors and providers to ascertain how the unexpectedly limited supply can best be made available to the populations most in need of vaccinations (see link below to interim guidelines).See also:2003 New England Journal of Medicine article on Serratia contamination of brochoscopes [Abstract]CDC interim recommendations for flu vaccinehttp://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm5339a6.htmlast_img read more

Africa Cup of Nations 2017: Riot stops play in qualifier

first_imgA riot stopped play in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on Sunday as fans threw missiles and police fired tear gas into the stands.The unrest broke out when a goal was awarded to Guinea Bissau after 81 minutes, with Kenya’s players arguing the ball had not crossed the line.Play was halted for 30 minutes as Kenya fans threw missiles at the Guinea Bissau bench and the fourth official.Kenya, who were beaten 1-0 in Nairobi, could face sanctions.The result takes Guinea Bissau to the top of their qualifying group and leaves Kenya with little chance of qualifying for next year’s tournament.Elsewhere in Group E, Congo and Zambia drew 1-1 in an identical scoreline to their result in Ndola on Wednesday. Jordan Massengo put Congo ahead in Brazzaville just after half-time, with Winston Kalengo equalising in the 72nd minute.Guinea Bissau lead the group on seven points, one point ahead of both Congo and Zambia, with Kenya bottom, six points off the top.In Sunday’s first Nations Cup qualifier, Ghana lost their 100% record in Group H with a 0-0 draw in Mozambique.The result in Maputo leaves the Black Stars on 10 points, four ahead of Mauritius, the surprise package in Group H. Mauritius could close that gap with a win over Rwanda in Kigali on Tuesday.West Bromwich Albion’s Stephane Sessegnon scored twice for Benin in Cotonou as the hosts beat South Sudan 4-1 to go top of Group C. Mickael Pote and Jodel Dossou were also on target for Benin, with Atak Lual grabbing a consolation for the away side.Mali could regain the lead in that group if they beat Equatorial Guinea in Malabo on Monday.Comoros, who got their first win in a major qualifying competition when they beat Botswana at home on Thursday, were brought back down to earth with a 2-1 defeat in the return fixture.Comoros looked like they might complete a double over their opponents when Mchangama Youssouf scored just before the break.But second-half goals from Galabgwe Moyana and then Joel Mogorosi gave Botswana the win which puts them level on points with the top two, Uganda and Burkina Faso, who play each other in Kampala on Tuesday. All group winners are guaranteed places at the 2017 tournament in Gabon, with the best two runners-up joining them. –Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @JoySportsGH. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

Joc Pederson doesn’t want to be left out by Dodgers

first_imgDodgers manager Dave Roberts platooned Pederson with right-handed Trayce Thompson during the first half of last season and limited Pederson’s playing time against left-handed pitching (he had just 77 plate appearances against lefties all season). This spring, Roberts has said Pederson will get more at-bats against lefties in 2017 based on the desire to keep his glove in center field and faith that Pederson will improve against left-handers.“Both,” Roberts said. “Obviously, we like his glove out there in center field and his ability to slug.”Pederson finished second among last year’s Dodgers (to Corey Seager) in slugging percentage (.512), OPS (.847) and OPS-plus (129). None of that damage was done against left-handed pitching, however. Pederson was 8 for 64 (.125) with 22 strikeouts and hit just one of his 25 home runs against left-handers.Pederson asserts he doesn’t have a problem with left-handers despite a .178 average in two big-league seasons against them – “I mean, I hit .300 off them my last year in Triple-A,” he said. Instead, his offseason focus was on making some adjustments heading into his third season that will give him a more mechanically sound swing regardless of what kind of pitching he is facing.“I think if your body is not in a good position, you’re not going to hit. With any approach you have,” Pederson said. “So I needed to make some mechanical changes to get myself into a better hitting position. And when you have that in order, you can move on to your approach and focus on how pitchers are attacking you. “These pitchers are good and they know how to throw it to certain locations and if you’re not able to hit those locations, you’re an out. So you’ve got to mechanically get in a good spot.”Roberts sees a more consistent “path to the ball” from Pederson this spring and “more consistency with his approach.” Pederson homered to lead off the game against the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday, his third home run in the Cactus League (no other Dodger has more than one).“With Joc, even if you go back to last spring, there was a lot of tinkering and really trying to figure out what works best for him,” Roberts said. “The second after the season ended, he made an adjustment with his swing. There’s a little step-back thing going and it gets him in a good position to fire. I think from that point on he kind of found a baseline for his swing mechanically. Then outside of that an approach piece, a plan piece.“Every hitter is different. The important thing is when he gets to that point to where he’s ready to fire on the baseball, his hands are in a consistent position. That’s where he’s at right now.”TV guideThe Dodgers, Spectrum Networks and KTLA reached agreement to simulcast SportsNet LA’s broadcast of 10 early-season games on the Los Angeles station, making them available to a wider audience as the Dodgers’ distribution stalemate enters a fourth season.The 10 games made available are April 5 (vs. the Padres), April 9 (at Colorado), April 12 (at Wrigley Field), April 16 (vs. the Diamondbacks), April 18 and 19 (vs. the Rockies), April 23 (at Arizona), April 30 (vs. the Phillies), May 3 (vs. the Giants) and May 7 (at San Diego).Return dateRoberts said Corey Seager (back), Andre Ethier (back) and Andrew Toles (hyperextended right knee) are expected to play again Saturday after sitting out most of this week with minor injuries. In Seager’s case, he has played just three games with six plate appearances this spring.“For us, it’s fine,” Roberts said. “Spring training is long as it is, especially on the position players’ side. … Obviously we expect him to play a lot this season. So for him to essentially get a week to be down is not the worst thing.”Last spring, Seager was missed the final 19 days of the Cactus League schedule, played in the Freeway Series — and then led the Dodgers in games played (157) and plate appearances (687) in the regular season. GLENDALE, Ariz. >> Brian Urlacher might be coming out of retirement again.Late last season, Dodgers center fielder Joc Pederson took to wearing a face guard on his helmet for at-bats against left-handed pitchers. Pederson joked that the face guard made him feel like the retired Chicago Bears linebacker.It did more than that. It gave Pederson a visual cue to “keep my front shoulder in longer and be able to use the whole field” against lefties. Pederson said he has ordered another face guard from the equipment manufacturer and might wear it again this season.If so, that face guard could get more exposure.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more