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Takeda's dengue vaccine candidate shows promise

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New Delhi, June 10 (IANS) Japanese pharma company Takeda on Friday announced that its dengue vaccine candidate, TAK-003, prevented 84 per cent of hospitalised dengue cases and 61 per cent of symptomatic cases.

The 4.5-year-long phase-3 clinical trial, which included over 20,000 children and teenagers from South East Asia and Latin America, identified no “important safety risks”.

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The data was presented at the 8th Northern European Conference on Travel Medicine (NECTM8).

“The burden of dengue is far-reaching, and over half of the world’s population is at risk of dengue each year,” said Eng Eong Ooi, Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore.

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“There is an urgent need for impactful prevention tools to combat the disease. The long-term trial results indicate that TAK-003 could be an important addition to the limited tools we have to prevent dengue, particularly given the demonstrated protection against hospitalisations,” Ooi added.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 70 per cent of the disease burden of dengue rests with Asia, and India accounts for 33 million clinically apparent dengue cases every year, contributing to a third of the total global dengue burden.

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“There is a dengue outbreak almost every year in India. The dengue burden underscores the need for new vaccines. The data from the trial provide hope for a long-term solution in the fight against dengue,” said Serina Fischer, General Manager, India, Takeda.

Tetravalent dengue vaccine candidate (TAK-003) is based on a live-attenuated dengue serotype 2 virus, which provides the genetic “backbone” for all four vaccine viruses.

Clinical Phase 2 data in children and adolescents showed that TAK-003 induced immune responses against all four dengue serotypes.

TAK-003 is currently undergoing regulatory review for the prevention of dengue disease in children and adults in the European Union and select dengue-endemic countries.

–IANS

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