Eight cities in US line up for swine flu vaccine test

Sharon Frey, who is leading the government-funded testing at Saint Louis University, said scientists have been working late nights and weekends to organize the studies and recruit volunteers.

"Typically it takes a year to do this," said Frey, an infectious diseases expert. "I can tell you we're working at breakneck speed."

About 2,800 people will participate in the government-led studies. Saint Louis University will test 200 adults and 200 children. Also under way are separate studies by five flu vaccine manufacturers under contract with the government.

Health officials expect to have about 160 million doses available this fall, with the first batch sometime in September. The studies will test the safety and effectiveness of vaccines developed by drug makers and help determine dosage and whether it can be given with a seasonal flu shot.

Participants will be given different combinations of two swine flu vaccines made by drug makers Sanofi Pasteur and CSL Limited and a seasonal flu vaccine.

Frey said the data will be turned around quickly for review by the Food and Drug Administration.

It's possible the government will begin a public vaccination campaign before all of the work of the trials is complete, Dr. Anne Schuchat has said.

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