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Update of EU recommendations for 2018/2019 seasonal flu vaccine composition

Update to recommendations issued in March 2018

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has issued an update of the European Union (EU) recommendations for the influenza virus strains that vaccine manufacturers should include in vaccines for the prevention of seasonal influenza from autumn 2018.

The recommendations now also contain a decision on suitable strains for live, attenuated vaccines. The list of reagents for vaccine standardisation has also been updated. Details such as the specific virus strains to be included, are available in the updated 2018/2019 recommendations issued by EMA’s Biologics Working Party (BWP)ad-hoc Influenza Working Group.

The initial EU strain recommendations for the composition of 2018/2019 seasonal flu vaccines were made on 26 March 2018.

Every year, the ad-hoc Influenza Working Group issues EU guidance regarding the composition of seasonal influenza vaccines on the basis of recommendations made by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The Agency urges marketing-authorisation holders to submit applications to change the composition of centrally authorised seasonal flu vaccines by 18 June 2018.

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