The increasingly frequent cases of monkeypox are also causing concern in Germany. Is there enough vaccine? The manufacturer of the monkeypox vaccine Imvanex gives the all-clear - the demand can be easily served. However, the vaccine has not yet been approved in this country.
According to the manufacturer of the monkeypox vaccine Imvanex, the current outbreak is not expected to result in a shortage of the vaccine. "We believe we can meet global demand without further investment in our production facilities," said Bavarian Nordic spokesman Rolf Sass Sørensen.
Bavarian Nordic is headquartered in Denmark, where production also takes place. However, the vector vaccine was developed in the German branch in Martinsried near Munich. The company holds the only approved monkeypox vaccine in the world. It is currently possible to produce 30 million cans a year, said Sørensen.
However, approval for monkeypox is limited to the United States, where the vaccine is known as Jynneos, and Canada. Approval in the European Union is being planned, said Sørensen. In Europe, the vaccine has so far only been approved for smallpox in humans, which is believed to be extinct. In Great Britain, for example, the vaccine is also used "off-label", i.e. without the appropriate approval, Sørensen continues.
The spokesman did not want to reveal exactly what quantities of the vaccine were sold to which countries. However, he emphasized that the company is currently receiving inquiries "from many, many countries" and that it is likely that inquiries will be received from all countries affected by the current outbreak. According to Health Minister Karl Lauterbach, Germany has ordered "up to 40,000 doses" of smallpox vaccine from the SPD.
The impetus for the development of the smallpox vaccine from Bavarian Nordic came from cooperation with the US government. After the attack on the World Trade Center in 2001, the US government made plans to vaccinate the entire population out of fear of a smallpox attack, Sørensen said. However, the older vaccines were associated with significant side effects. "So they came to us and asked us to make a better and newer generation of smallpox vaccine," he added. It is a very safe vaccine that has been tested on very solid data.