WHO prequalifies 3 Novartis H1N1 flu vaccines for use in developing world

Basel, Switzerland -- Novartis announced Dec. 21 that the World Health Organization has granted prequalification for all three of its influenza A (H1N1) 2009 monovalent vaccines for supply to United Nations agencies: the cell culture-based and MF59 adjuvanted vaccine Celtura; the egg-based and MF59 adjuvanted vaccine Focetria; and the egg-based A (H1N1) vaccine manufactured using the seasonal Fluvirin platform.

In addition to granting prequalified status for Novartis' three influenza A (H1N1) 2009 vaccines, WHO has also granted prequalification for the company's trivalent seasonal Fluvirin vaccine.

WHO prequalification facilitates purchasing through U.N. agencies and thus enhances access for developing world countries to Novartis A (H1N1) 2009 vaccines that meet unified standards of quality and safety.

"With WHO prequalification for all three of our A (H1N1) 2009 vaccines, we have expanded our commitment to contribute to the prevention of A (H1N1) 2009 influenza in all countries around the world," said Andrin Oswald, CEO of Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics.