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Pneumovax 23

Merck & Co., Inc.

Drug Names(s): Pneumococcal Vaccine Polyvalent, 23vPS, Pneumo 23, Pneumovax II

Description: Pneumovax 23 consists of a mixture of highly purified capsular polysaccharides from the 23most prevalent or invasive pneumococcal types of Streptococcus pneumoniae (types (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6B, 7F, 8, 9N, 9V, 10A, 11A, 12F, 14, 15B, 17F, 18C, 19F, 19A, 20, 22F, 23F, and 33F), including the six serotypes that most frequently cause invasive drug-resistant pneumococcal infections among children and adults in the United States.

In the United States, Pneumovax competes mainly with Prevnar-13, which has a dominant position in the market because CDC guidelines call for immunization of all children beginning at age 2 months. As Pneumovax 23 does not induce an adequate immune response in children under age 24 months, it is not approved in this age group. Prevnar is a conjugate vaccine, while Pneumovax 23 is an unconjugated polysaccharide vaccine, and thus less able to activate Th cells.

Deal Structure: Pneumovax 23 is licensed to Sanofi in certain ex-US markets.

Merck and Sanofi Pasteur
In March 2016, Sanofi Pasteur and Merck (MSD) announced their intent to end their joint vaccines operations in Europe. Upon concluding their joint venture, both companies plan to integrate their respective European vaccine businesses into their operations, independently manage their product portfolios and pursue their own distinct growth strategies in Europe.

The joint venture Sanofi Pasteur MSD, owned on a 50/50 basis by Sanofi Pasteur and MSD, was created in 1994 to develop and commercialize vaccines originating from both companies pipelines to improve and promote public health in 19 European countries. Sanofi Pasteur and MSD expect the project to be completed by the end of 2016, subject to local labor laws and regulations and regulatory approvals.


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