A newly developed bird flu vaccine would soon be launched for commercial use in Hungary following clearance by the national pharmaceutical agency . The Prime Minister, Ferenc Gyurcsany, made the announcement.
Hungary initiated fight against the much dreaded bird flu, last year. Vaccine trials conducted on animal and human models have yielded promising results. The bird flu vaccine is claimed to confer protection against the H5N1 virus that spreads from one bird to the other.
The drug developers additionally claim that it would protect human beings as well. Contrary to the claim, the World Health Organization issued a statement saying that the vaccine is likely to be ineffective against mutated version of the avian influenza virus.
So far, no case of human-human bird flu transmission has been reported so far. However, it is feared that the virus may acquire this ability, sparking bird flu pandemic. A high demand for the much-awaited vaccine exists and many countries are involved in competition to grab their share.
The health officials in Hungary have said that the pharmaceutical company, Omnivest is capable of producing as much as 500, 000 vaccines, every week. So far, 40 cases of the deadly disease have been reported in Hungary, all among wild birds. The country has 20, 000 units of the vaccine, in case of an outbreak among poultry.
The number would be sufficient enough to vaccinate poultry workers, farm owners, vets and others at increased risk of contracting bird flu. Three cases of bird flu have been reported in Azerbaijan. If confirmed, this would elevate the worldwide human death toll to 101.
With the number of deaths and bird flu infections increasing each day, let us hope that this bird flu vaccine, produced by Hungary will serve it's purpose in restricting the spread of bird flu.