GSK plc (LSE/NYSE:GSK) has announced that the FDA has approved the Priorix measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine for individuals at least 12 months old.
Before the FDA approval, Merck & Co.’s M-M-R II was the only MMR vaccine currently FDA approved in the U.S. Merck also has an FDA-approved measles, mumps, rubella and varicella vaccine known as ProQuad.
Priorix is widely available throughout the world, having been licensed in more than 100 countries. More than 800 million doses have been distributed.
“We’re proud to make Priorix available in the U.S. for the first time, adding a choice for providers to help protect patients against these highly-contagious diseases and to further strengthen offerings in our pediatric vaccine portfolio,” said Judy Stewart, senior vice president and head of U.S. vaccines at GSK, in a news release.
Measles, mumps and rubella are highly contagious diseases.
In the U.S., measles surged in 2019, infecting at least 1,282 individuals in 31 states, according to CDC. In that same year, there were over 400,000 measles cases across the world, according to UNICEF.
Measles, mumps and rubella vaccination has dipped during the pandemic. In the past two years, the CDC’s Vaccines For Children program has seen a more than 10% reduction in vaccine ordering.
“Outbreaks of measles in recent years demonstrate how quickly diseases can return without widespread immunization. Missed vaccinations during the pandemic makes children even more vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases like measles,” said Dr. Temi Folaranmi, vice president and vaccines therapeutic area head, U.S. Medical Affairs at GSK, in a news release. “Making Priorix available to patients in the US will ensure health care professionals have more than one option for this critical vaccine as they work to catch their patients up on recommended vaccinations.”
GSK tested the safety of Priorix in six clinical trials involving more than 12,000 participants, including 6,391 in the U.S.
Filed Under: Infectious Disease