Sanofi Pasteur Partners with U.S. Naval Medical Research Center to Advance Development of Travelers’ Diarrhea Vaccine

The licensed technology was developed by the NMRC with the help of the University of Colorado

Lyon, France | April 12, 2010 | Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of sanofi-aventis Group (EURONEXT : SAN and NYSE : SNY), announced today that it has entered into a strategic partnership with the U.S. Naval Medical Research Center (NMRC) to develop a promising new bacterial vaccine against enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC). ETEC causes nearly 400,000 childhood deaths in the developing world each year and is the predominant cause of infectious gastroenteritis in travelers and deployed military personnel, according to the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH).

The core ETEC adhesin vaccine technology, developed by NMRC, was exclusively licensed to Sanofi Pasteur, along with a second technology that efficiently packages the adhesin with a toxoid vaccine component, co-developed by NMRC and the University of Colorado Denver. The cooperative research and development agreement was executed between Sanofi Pasteur and NMRC, inaugurating a joint research effort to be conducted over the next four years.

The World Health organization agrees with the ASTMH mortality estimate and adds that ETEC accounts for approximately 210 million episodes of diarrhea annually1. ETEC is the most common cause of bacterial diarrhea leading to dehydration and shock when not treated promptly and effectively. Food-borne diseases, including travelers’ diarrhea, afflict 40-60% of the 80 million individuals who travel from industrialized countries to lesser developed countries each year and have been a scourge of military operations throughout history2.

“We have committed our technical expertise to expedite development of this vaccine for eventual licensure and sales worldwide, “said Wayne Pisano, president and CEO of Sanofi Pasteur. “This multi-year project will provide a solid basis for launching clinical development. Furthermore,” Pisano continued, “we believe that this vaccine has the potential to curtail the number and severity of food-borne illnesses due to ETEC, and it may also decrease the risk of post-infectious irritable bowel syndrome, which afflicts one in ten who experience travelers’ diarrhea.”

According to the agreement, if the four-year pre-clinical research effort proves successful, it will serve as the basis for launching full-scale clinical development of a multivalent adhesin-based ETEC vaccine.

About sanofi-aventis

Sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. Sanofi-aventis is listed in Paris (EURONEXT: SAN) and in New York (NYSE: SNY). For more information, please visit: www.sanofi-aventis.com.

Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines division of sanofi-aventis Group, provided more than 1.6 billion doses of vaccine in 2008, making it possible to immunize more than 500 million people across the globe. A world leader in the vaccine industry, Sanofi Pasteur offers the broadest range of vaccines protecting against 20 infectious diseases. The company's heritage, to create vaccines that protect life, dates back more than a century. Sanofi Pasteur is the largest company entirely dedicated to vaccines. Every day, the company invests more than EUR 1 million in research and development. For more information, please visit: www.sanofipasteur.com or www.sanofipasteur.us.

References
:

1. http://www.who.int/vaccine_research/diseases/e_e_coli/en/
2. Global Etiology of Travelers’ Diarrhea: Systematic Review from 1973 to the Present; Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg.;
80(4) 2009; pp 609-614

SOURCE: Sanofi-aventis

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