Japan’s Daiichi Sankyo and UMN Pharma are set to collaborate on developing a vaccine for norovirus, the drugmakers said Friday. In December, the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare’s Immunization and Vaccines Committee designated norovirus a high development priority.
Under the agreement, UMN will provide Daiichi Sankyo exclusive access to its recombinant norovirus Virus Like Particle antigen, which it produced using a cell-culture manufacturing method that utilizes the Baculovirus Expression Vector System. Daiichi Sankyo will then use a novel device to explore the possibility of creating a norovirus vaccine.
Norovirus is one of the leading causes of infectious gastroenteritis. Though deaths from norovirus in the developed world are rare, they are still fairly common in developing countries and are caused primarily by dehydration from vomiting and other means of fluid loss than by the virus itself. — Lena Freund
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