Panacea Biotec, one of India's leading research-based health management companies, has received an award notification for supply of its pentavalent vaccine – EasyFive, for years 2008 and 2009 from UNICEF. The total value of the award is US$ 34.2 million (around Rs 143 crore). 

EasyFive is world's first fully liquid pentavalent vaccine introduced in India, which immunizer's children against five dreadful diseases (DTwP+Hep B+Hib) of early childhood. This is also India's first fully vaccine pre-qualified by WHO in July 2008.

Rajesh Jain, joint managing director, said, "There is an urgent need to foster innovation for the developing, countries as the world is inching closer to the goal of eradicating dreadful diseases, especially for the early childhood, by providing effective vaccines. Immunization can prevent a million deaths. We at Panacea Biotec are partners with agencies worldwide to accelerate and spearhead a wide spectrum of technological innovations to develop vaccines that meet the unique needs of low-resource countries."

EasyFive offers a befitting solution to overcome complexity of childhood vaccination programme. With the introduction of this vaccine, the vaccination rates are likely to be increased and will make parents more willing to let children get all the shots they need in one visit, rather than scheduling multiple appointments, thus avoiding late vaccinations.

According to a Panacea press release, developing countries would need a combination vaccine to the tune of around 300 million doses annually. The combined demand of all combination paediatric vaccines worldwide was valued at USD 600 million in 2006 and is estimated to grow up to USD 1.6 billion by 2012. Pentavalent vaccine market is estimated to cross a mark of USD1 billion out of which, UN agencies are likely to procure this vaccine worth more than US$ 350 million (around Rs 1500 crore) by 2009 itself. The WHO prequalification for EasyFive and the subsequent order for supply have made Panacea a global leader in this important market segment.