Each dose of LAIV is formulated to contain three live attenuated influenza virus strains, which are weakened as to not cause illness: Two Type A influenza strains (A/H1N1 and A/H3N2) and one Type B strain. The vaccine strains are selected annually by the World Health Organization (WHO) based on anticipated circulating influenza strains for the upcoming season. The vaccine is sprayed into the nose, rather than by injection as with other licensed influenza vaccines, where it induces protective immunity. In the U.S., LAIV is marketed under the trade name FluMist® (Influenza Virus Vaccine Live, Intranasal). It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2003. The vaccine included in the MAA has not been registered in the European Union and is not available outside of the United States. About Influenza
Influenza is the most common vaccine-preventable disease in the developed world. According to WHO estimates, seasonal influenza results in three to five million cases of severe illness and up to half a million deaths globally each year, primarily among the elderly. Rates of infection are highest among children, with school-aged children significantly contributing to spread of disease to their families, communities and high-risk individuals. Influenza also has socioeconomic consequences related to both direct and indirect health care costs, including hospitalizations, work absence and loss of work productivity when either a caregiver or child is sick with influenza. In the European Union (EU), current guidelines recommend annual influenza vaccination for the elderly as well as those with underlying medical conditions such as chronic heart or lung disease. However, vaccination rates in the recommended groups throughout Europe are estimated to be only 35 percent (Ryan, Vaccine, August 2006). To date, six EU countries (Finland, Austria, Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia and Slovenia) recommend routinely vaccinating young children against influenza with varying age limits. EU and Member State policymakers continue to evaluate data on the impact of influenza in children to best inform the potential expansion of recommendations. About MedImmune
MedImmune is a leading innovation-focused biotechnology company whose mission is to provide better medicines to patients, new medical options for physicians and rewarding careers to employees. Dedicated to advancing science and medicine to help people live better lives, the company is focused on infection, oncology, respiratory disease and inflammation, cardiovascular/gastrointestinal disease and neuroscience. Headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, MedImmune has approximately 3,000 employees worldwide and is the wholly owned biologics business for AstraZeneca PLC (LSE: AZN.L, NYSE: AZN). For more information, visit MedImmune's website at http://www.medimmune.com. About AstraZeneca
AstraZeneca is a major international healthcare business engaged in the research, development, manufacturing and marketing of meaningful prescription medicines and supplier for healthcare services. AstraZeneca is one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies with healthcare sales of $29.55 billion and is a leader in gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, neuroscience, respiratory, oncology and infectious disease medicines. For more information about AstraZeneca, please visit: www.astrazeneca.com.