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Jan 17, 2007

GSK Receives $63M HHS Contract for Flu Vaccine R&D

  • GlaxoSmithKline was awarded a contract worth at least $63.3 million from the Department of Health and Human Services to develop prepandemic and pandemic flu vaccines. The contract supports GSK's pandemic vaccine research using its adjuvant technology in combination with antigens to induce a strong immune response.

    The five-year contract also gives the U.S. Government the option to fund an additional $44 million of future clinical development programs related to antigen-sparing pandemic vaccines.

    "A limited global supply capacity of flu antigen makes it critical that we use innovative adjuvant system technology to produce a new generation of flu pandemic vaccines," points out David Stout, president of pharmaceuticals. "GSK's research in adjuvant technology over the past two decades uniquely positions our company to develop adjuvants designed to boost immune response and give broader protection while using smaller amounts of antigen."

    Under the terms of the contract, GSK will conduct R&D leading toward licensure of antigen-sparing prepandemic and pandemic vaccines with adjuvant.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

Do you agree that ecstasy should be studied for its potential therapeutic benefits?

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