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World's First Dengue Vaccine Approved After 20 Years of Research

  • Sanofi's Dengvaxia approved in Mexico; 19 countries may follow
  • Decisions in Latin America, Asia expected in coming weeks
BRAZIL-MOSQUITO-DENGUE-CONTROL-OPERATION
Photographer: Christophe Simon/AFP via Getty Images

The first vaccine against dengue fever won clearance in Mexico, an initial step toward preventing a mosquito-borne infection that puts half of the world’s population at risk.

Sanofi expects more approvals in “upcoming weeks” for the product, called Dengvaxia, in Latin America and Asia, Olivier Charmeil, who heads the Paris-based company’s vaccines unit, said in a telephone interview. The injection can thwart all four types of the virus, which has appeared in Portugal, France, Florida and Japan recently and increased the risk of “explosive outbreaks,” according to the World Health Organization.