Frost & Sullivan awards Protein Sciences for Flublok vaccine

Frost & Sullivan recognized the influenza vaccine developed by Protein Sciences Corporation, Flublok, with the 2013 Global New Product Innovation Award, PR Newswire said Monday.

The vaccine is the first recombinant protein vaccine to be approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Unlike other vaccines, Flublok is not produced using chicken eggs, rather it is produced using insect cell line-based technology. This avoids the risks of infection associated with chicken eggs.

"Flublok enables a faster startup of the vaccine manufacturing process, as it does not depend on either egg supply or the availability of influenza virus," Frost & Sullivan Senior Research Analyst Aiswariya Chidambaram said. "This speed is critical in the face of a pandemic outbreak of influenza when quick production of vaccine is essential to deal with the pandemic effectively."

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned of a strain of influenza, the H3N2, which many current vaccines are ineffective against. Protein Sciences' President and CEO Dr. Manon Cox said its compound offers a viable solution.

"A drift in influenza virus strain can effectively be addressed by a strong antibody response," Cox said. "Flublok contains three times more antigen than traditional trivalent flu vaccines and induces a stronger antibody response against the influenza A viruses and a comparable response against influenza B viruses. The H3N2 virus is an influenza A virus and therefore we expect similar results to those observed in our 2007/08 clinical study where Flublok was effective against drifted H3N2 viruses."