Dengue fever affects more than 100 million people worldwide. Mortality is high, symptoms are severe, and there are no clearly effective treatments to address the disease once it has become established.
While the need for a vaccine to prevent Dengue fever is high, the disease’s predilection for developing nations reduces potential product revenue. As a result, research into a Dengue fever vaccine is largely being pioneered by government research institutes and smaller vaccine developers. The exception is Sanofi Pasteur; its ChimeriVax is currently in Phase III studies. If ChimeriVax is approved by 2012 and other Dengue fever vaccines follow, total global sales are expected to reach $1.4 billion in 2020.
Diabetes affects more than 200 million people worldwide, with about 20 million suffering from the more serious type 1 diabetes and the rest characterized as type 2. Both forms are linked to a range of serious co-morbidities including blindness, kidney failure, and amputations.
While diabetes may be controlled with various medications including insulin (for type 1) and medicines to regulate blood glucose level (for type 2), there is essentially no cure for diabetes, and sufferers must often adhere to strict dietary and blood glucose monitoring protocols. A vaccine could address a large market need and would likely be covered by medical insurance.
Hepatitis C and E
Hepatitis C and E, which together affect almost 300 million people worldwide, are serious conditions that generally lead to death via liver disease. Vaccines for hepatitis A and B have significantly reduced the impact of these related diseases, and developers continue to seek similar means to address other hepatitis strains.