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US Approves Prevnar vaccine Effective for Adults above the age of 50

Pfizer’s blockbuster product and the biggest brand Prevnar 13 was initially approved for the children in the United States, but recently it was also approved and proved to be secured for adults ranging in the age group 50 and above. Prevnar 13 generated annual sales of more than $1.5 billion.

Prevnar 13 designed to fight 13 forms of bacterium called Streptococcus pneumoniae, or pneumococcus.Pneumonia caused by the pneumococcal organism is one of the biggest causes of death in older people and its incidence begins to increase after age 50.

The USFDA (United States food and drug administration) stated that almost 30,000 adults in the older age group in the United States are hospitalized each year because of pneumococcal pneumonia.  Prevnar was considered under the FDA’s accelerated approval process which means that the agency believed the medicine represents the unmet medical needs.

Prevnar 13 belongs to a new generation of pneumococcal vaccines known as conjugates, which can trigger a stronger and longer-lasting immune response.

The vaccine can protect against pneumonia, when the pneumococcus bacteria infects the lungs, and is also effective against the bacteria’s spread to other parts of the body such as the blood or spinal fluid.

The vaccine is already approved for adults aged 50 and older in the European Union, Australia, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Thailand and the Philippines, Pfizer said.

In total, the Prevnar franchise – known as Prevenar in Europe and other countries – had about $3.7 billion in global sales last year.