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Flu vaccine production in pipeline

China is set to be the first country to mass-produce a vaccine against the A/H1N1 flu pandemic, which scientists warn might erupt this fall and winter.

After passing a panel of experts certification organized by the State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA) yesterday, the vaccine is expected to be approved by the government this week.

The vaccine was developed by Beijing-based Sinovac.

The A/H1N1 influenza vaccine would be appropriate for anyone aged 3 to 60, said vaccine expert Zhao Kai, who is with SFDA's Drug Evaluation Center.

Only one shot is needed for inoculation.

"It's up to the international standard for safety and immunogenicity factors," Zhao said yesterday at the experts certification meeting.

Vice-Health Minister Yin Li yesterday emphasized the importance of vaccination.

"Local health departments should organize vulnerable groups for inoculation when A/H1N1 flu vaccination regulations are issued," he said.

An online survey by the news portal Sohu.com found that 68.4 percent of the 2,269 respondents said they wanted to be vaccinated.

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 Source : China Daily  Editor: Ivy
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