KOREAN FDA APPROVES CRUCELL'S QUINVAXEM VACCINE

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The Korean Food and Drug Administration has approved Dutch drugmaker Crucell's fully liquid five-part vaccine, Quinvaxem, for use in the country. The vaccine, which provides immunity against five childhood diseases — diphtheria, tetanus, hepatitis B, whooping cough and hemophilus meningitis type B — was co-developed with the California-based Chiron Corporation. Crucell will begin producing the vaccine at its Korean subsidiary, the company reported.

"This approval … is an important first step towards becoming a major supplier in pediatric vaccination programs for the developing world," said Ronald Brus, CEO of Crucell. "[It] is an important milestone for us."

Quinvaxem is the first liquid vaccine containing all five disease-fighting antigens to be available internationally, which makes it a good candidate for use in mass-vaccination programs in developing countries, the company said.