GlaxoSmithKline has formed a joint venture with Indian vaccines company Biological E to research and develop a six-in-one combination paediatric vaccine to help protect children in India and other developing countries from certain infectious diseases.
If the vaccine is approved, it will combine GSK’s injectable polio vaccine and Biological E’s pentavalent vaccine for diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and hemophilus influenza type B, and could be the first vaccine of its type, according to a GSK press statement.
The vaccine is intended to reduce the number of injections for children and to improve compliance with immunisation schedules. Space at local storage facilities would also be freed up because the vaccine is intended to be a fully liquid, ready-to-use formulation with no need for additional ingredients or materials. Phase I development is expected to start in the next two years.
Each company will have a 50% stake in the joint venture and will bear the development costs. A small cash investment will be made by both companies to cover the start-up costs and further development costs will be split equally.
Completion of the transaction is expected later this year.