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Medical News & Perspectives
July 7, 2010

FDA: Benefits of Rotavirus Vaccination Outweigh Potential Contamination Risk

JAMA. 2010;304(1):30-31. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.863

Recently discovered contamination of 2 rotavirus vaccines by pig viruses is unlikely to pose a human health threat, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The agency recommended in May that physicians resume use of one vaccine, Rotarix, and continue use of the other vaccine, RotaTeq.

On March 22, the FDA had recommended that physicians suspend the use of Rotarix after the agency learned that academic researchers made the unexpected finding that the vaccine contained DNA from porcine circovirus 1 (PCV1), a virus that is common in US swine but not associated with illness in pigs or humans (Victoria JG et al. J Virol. 2010;84[12]:6033-6040). This finding was confirmed by scientists from the FDA and the vaccine's maker, GlaxoSmithKline.