Seniors More Protected By Adjuvanted Influenza Vaccine

Seqirus Fluad adjuvanted trivalent influenza vaccine found more effective for seniors

older person in nursing home being taken care

New Jersey-based Seqirus announced the results from a clinical trial that showed Fluad®, an adjuvanted trivalent influenza vaccine (aTIV), was 6 percent more effective than standard non-adjuvanted trivalent influenza vaccine (TIV) in reducing the risk of all-cause hospitalizations.

And, this study found the Fluad vaccine reduced hospitalization for influenza and pneumonia, in adults 65 years and older living in 823 USA nursing homes during the 2016-2017 influenza season by 20 percent.

Announced in a press release on December 9, 2019, this is important news given the low vaccine-effectiveness (VE) observed during this influenza study.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported the adjusted overall vaccine effectiveness for the 2016-2017 influenza season was 21 percent for influenza A/H3N2 viruses in adults 65 years and older, and 20 percent overall across all strains.

"This study highlights that even in adults 65 years and older sufficiently impaired to require nursing home care, adjuvanted seasonal influenza vaccine can help reduce the risk of hospitalization," said Dr. Stefan Gravenstein, M.D., MPH, Professor of Medicine and Health Services, Policy and Practice at the Brown University School of Public Health and lead study author.

In the U.S., influenza impacts adults 65 years and older with higher hospitalization and death rates compared to young, healthy adults, says the CDC.

Influenza VE also tends to be lower in this population due to age-related immune decline, which reduces the body's ability to produce a sufficient, protective immune response to the vaccine.

Fluad utilizes MF59 adjuvant technology, designed to create a strong, broad and durable immune response. Fluad has an extensive clinical legacy, with 114+ million doses distributed and licensure in 29 countries since it was first approved in 1997.

Fluad was the first FDA-approved seasonal flu shot that contains an adjuvant, which is an immune-enhancing ingredient.

Fluad was initially approved in Italy in 1997, and at the time of its U.S. approval in November 2015, had been licensed in 38 countries, including Canada and 15 European countries.

"These data build on the growing body of evidence that MF59 adjuvanted seasonal influenza vaccines can reduce the chance of hospitalization due to influenza-related illness and potentially enhance protection for adults 65 years and older with weakened immune systems in a mismatched influenza season," said Gregg Sylvester, MD, Vice President of Medical Affairs at Seqirus, in this press release.

A potential limitation of this study is that it was conducted during a severe A/H3N2 influenza season in a year where vaccines were less effective and egg-based vaccines were subject to egg-adaptation.

To reduce the risk of serious outcomes related to the seasonal flu, such as hospitalization and death, resulting from influenza, the CDC recommends annual vaccination for all individuals aged 6 months and older.

Because transmission of influenza viruses to others may occur one day before symptoms develop and up to 5 to 7 days after becoming sick, the disease can be easily transmitted to others.

Influenza can lead to clinical symptoms varying from mild to moderate respiratory illness to severe complications, hospitalization and in some cases, death.

Recent flu season news

During the 2019-2020 flu season, the CDC has confirmed 6 pediatric related fatalities, as of December 6, 2019.

‘There are many vaccine options to choose from, but the most important thing is for all people 6 months and older to get a flu vaccine every year. If you have questions about which vaccine is best for you, talk to a healthcare professional,’ says the CDC.

These findings were presented on November 17, 2019, at the recent National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) 2019 Clinical Vaccinology Course.

Seqirus is part of CSL Limited headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. As one of the largest influenza vaccine providers in the world, Seqirus is a major contributor to the prevention of influenza globally and a transcontinental partner in pandemic preparedness.

Visit CSL Limited for more information.   

Influenza vaccine news published by Precision Vaccinations