Influenza vaccine composition for 2020-2021 northern hemisphere influenza season

World Health Organization

WHO recommendation announced in the WHO Information Meeting

New Delhi, 27th February 2021. The WHO recommendation on the composition of influenza virus vaccines for use in the northern hemisphere 2021-2022 was announced in the WHO Information Meeting and Round-table Discussion with manufacturers and regulatory agencies today, 26 February 2021.

It followed the 7-day virtual Consultation Meeting with Advisers from WHO Collaboration Centres (CCs) and WHO Essential Regulatory Laboratories (ERLs) based on year-round surveillance by the WHO Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System (GISRS).

It is recommended that quadrivalent vaccines for use in the 2021-2022 northern hemisphere influenza season contain the following:

Egg-based Vaccines

an A/Victoria/2570/2019 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;

an A/Cambodia/e0826360/2020 (H3N2)-like virus;

a B/Washington/02/2019 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus; and

a B/Phuket/3073/2013 (B/Yamagata lineage)-like virus.

Cell- or recombinant-based Vaccines

an A/Wisconsin/588/2019 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;

an A/Cambodia/e0826360/2020 (H3N2)-like virus;

a B/Washington/02/2019 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus; and

a B/Phuket/3073/2013 (B/Yamagata lineage)-like virus.

It is recommended that trivalent influenza vaccines for use in the 2021-2022 northern hemisphere influenza season contain the following:

Egg-based Vaccines

an A/Victoria/2570/2019 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;

an A/Cambodia/e0826360/2020 (H3N2)-like virus; and

a B/Washington/02/2019 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus.

Cell- or recombinant-based Vaccines

an A/Wisconsin/588/2019 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus;

an A/Cambodia/e0826360/2020 (H3N2)-like virus; and

a B/Washington/02/2019 (B/Victoria lineage)-like virus.

Background

The periodic update of viruses contained in influenza vaccines is necessary for the vaccines to be effective due to the constant evolving nature of influenza viruses, including those circulating and infecting humans.

Twice annually, WHO organizes consultations with an advisory group of experts to analyse influenza virus surveillance data generated by the WHO Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System (GISRS), and issues recommendations on the composition of the influenza vaccines for the following influenza season.

These recommendations are used by the national vaccine regulatory agencies and the pharmaceutical companies to develop, produce and license influenza vaccines.

This information is given in a WHO press release.

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