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Drugs - rabies vaccines

Q: Please give me the exact differences + cost benefit ratio of various anti-rabies vaccines available in the country, particularly Rabipur v/s Merieus Rabies Vaccine. There is a very large cost difference particulary since 5-6 injections have to be given. Which vaccine is in vogue in developed countries of west? I cannot trust the manufacturers because they give biased opinion. Practicing in an area surounded by rural areas, we get a large number of dog-bite cases.

A:Both vaccines contain inactivated rabies virus but the mode of formulation is different: Rabipur is based on older technology of using chick embryo cells while MIRV is prepared by using more recent human diploid cells technology which is more expensive.

While formulating Rabipur, small quantities of neomycin, chlortetracycline and amphotericin B are added and then washed out; however, undetectable traces of these agents may remain. Thefore one should not use Rabipur in patients known to be previously allergic to any of these agents.

Rabipur needs to be injected six times as per manufacturers own recommendation. In the case of MIRV, generally five doses are adequate; sixth dose is optional. In some countries such as England, Germany etc. both preparations are licensed while in some other countries (e.g. Australia),only MIRV is marketed.

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