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FDA to advance pneumococcus vaccine

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 (UPI) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it's entering into a collaboration to speed creation of a pneumococcal vaccine for children in developing nations.

The FDA said its collaboration with the Seattle-based, non-profit PATH group, the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health, is designed to advance development of a vaccine to protect children against diseases caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus), especially pneumonia, but also including meningitis, sepsis and middle ear infections.

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FDA officials said the two-year collaboration aims to improve the techniques used to produce effective, safe and affordable vaccines against pneumococcal disease. Under the agreement, PATH will provide approximately $480,000 to help the FDA obtain materials needed for the development of the conjugate vaccine technology.

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