FDA approves world's first single-dose cholera vaccine
- The FDA just approved PaxVax's Vaxchora, an oral cholera-prevention vaccine. Vaxchora becomes the world's first approved single-dose vaccine for the prevention of cholera.
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), each year, between 1.4 million and 4.3 million people are infected with cholera, a severe diarrheal bacterial infection that can be fatal within hours.
- Until now the CDC has recommended that U.S. travelers to cholera-endemic countries, including countries in African, Asia and the Caribbean, take precautions against Vibrio cholerae (V. cholerae) infection by avoiding suspicious water and food. However, 98% of travelers are non-compliant.
There are 69 cholera-endemic countries in the world, and although most travelers who develop cholera while visiting those countries don't die, cholera is a highly acute condition that leads to severe dehydration and diarrhea. If untreated, it could lead to death in less than two days.
In fact, although there is not a huge recognition of the problem, according to the CDC, the number of cholera cases in the U.S. is roughly 30-fold the amount estimated based on disease surveillance tracking methods.
Vaxchora, which was fast-tracked and received Priority Review from the FDA, is the result of a public-private partnership between the U.S. government and PaxVax Bermuda. Now PaxVax Bermuda is moving to make the vaccine available to people in cholera-endemic countries, who confront the threat of cholera on a regular basis.