Feb 18, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – A US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory committee today recommended that pharmaceutical companies use one new influenza strain, the B component, in next season’s flu vaccine.The Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee voted to follow the lead of the World Health Organization (WHO), which last week recommended replacing the influenza B strain in this year’s vaccine, which is from the Yamagata lineage, to one from the Victoria lineage, said Karen Reilly, an FDA spokeswoman. The WHO and the FDA panel recommended that the two influenza A strains for the Northern Hemisphere remain the same.Reilly told CIDRAP News that the votes on retaining the current influenza A/H1N1 and A/H3N2 strains were unanimous. However, the vote on changing the influenza B strain was 14 to 0 with one abstention.The flu vaccine is reformulated each year in an attempt to match ever-evolving virus strains. The WHO and FDA recommend the strains for the vaccine in February, allowing companies enough time to grow the viruses in chicken eggs and process them into vaccine doses. Most years the vaccine is protective, but last flu season all three strains in the vaccine were a poor match for circulating viruses, and the WHO and FDA recommended changing all three strains for this season.The influenza B component of this year’s flu vaccine was from the Yamagata lineage, but the proportion of strains from the Victoria lineage continues to increase and has become predominant in many countries, including the United States.The WHO and now the FDA committee recommend the following for next season’s vaccine:For the H1N1 component, a strain similar to A/Brisbane/59/2007For the H3N2 component, a strain similar to A/Brisbane/10/2007For the B component, a strain similar to B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus, replacing B/Florida/4/2006Reilly said the committee discussed recommending the addition of a second B strain to the vaccine, but did not vote on the measure. Health officials in the United States have discussed including both lineages in the seasonal vaccine to address the unpredictable circulation of the influenza B strains, given that a vaccine against one lineage offers little protection against the other.Some of the committee members said there was not enough research yet to support adding a second B strain lineage, she said.See also:Feb 13 CIDRAP News story “WHO picks new B strain for 2009-10 flu vaccine”Jan 16 CIDRAP News story “Experts consider 4-strain flu vaccine to fight B viruses”
“When you get where you are going, don’t forget to turn back around,” Tagovailoa repeated. “And help the next one in line. Always stay humble and kind.”Nobody embodied that more than Tagovailoa during that three-year ride at Alabama. He can always look back with appreciation, and will be humble through the next phase. The best advice for everybody?Enjoy the next ride. The thrill of the NFL experience was too much to pass up.MORE: Tagovailoa declares for 2020 NFL DraftTagovailoa leaves a one-of-a-kind legacy that was as true to himself as the Hawaiian shirt he wore to the podium on Monday for the final verdict.”He’s probably had more of an impact on our program than any other player we’ve ever had,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said while introducing Tagovailoa.Remember, it was Saban’s decision to bench Jalen Hurts and put Tagovailoa in for the second half of the 2018 College Football Playoff title game that launched Tagovailoa’s icon status. He rallied the Crimson Tide from a 13-0 deficit and secured his place in college football lore with a second-and-26 walk-off touchdown pass to DeVonta Smith for a 26-23 victory.All that, before his first start. The next two years were a whirlwind in which Alabama’s offense, with Tagovailoa at the controls, scorched the SEC with a high-flying offense. At its peak, it was like watching a cheat code where other teams were powerless to stop Tagovailoa, a quarterback whose vision, precision and accuracy meshed with one of the greatest receiving corps of all time.Tagovailoa closed his career with 7,442 passing yards and 87 touchdowns to 11 interceptions, but injuries — and the fact that he rarely played past the third quarter — prevented him from piling up those other honors.Tagovailoa finished second in the 2018 Heisman Trophy voting. He suffered an ankle injury in the 2018 SEC championship game and watched Hurts lead the comeback. He lost duels to Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence in the College Football Playoff championship game and LSU’s Joe Burrow in a No. 1-vs.-No. 2 showdown. All of that made the decision difficult, and a return to college would have put him in that rarified class that includes Tennessee’s Peyton Manning, USC’s Matt Leinart and Florida’s Tim Tebow.Tagovailoa could have chased the Heisman like Manning, or another national championship like Leinart and Tebow. But those quarterbacks’ legacies haven’t changed over time, and it will be interesting to see how Tagovailoa’s legend grows with each passing season. Sure, it will come with questions. Would they have beat LSU had he stayed healthy? Would Alabama have won it his senior season? Is he the best player without a Heisman Trophy?MORE: Tagovailoa, the megastar who redefined Alabama’s dynastyThat’s bar-room chatter when the truth is he left the biggest impact on the Saban dynasty, and has bridged the BCS and Playoff eras. Tagovailoa likely will be on the fringe of some of those “greatest” conversations, and it’s not undeserved.In the era of the transfer portal, staying three years at the same school is basically finishing what you started. Tagovailoa will graduate and, other than another season of dicing up SEC defenses, there was nothing for him to prove. Why risk everything in terms of life-changing money the NFL will offer? Tagovailoa could be a top-five pick despite undergoing hip surgery for an injury that could have ended his career.This is just Tagovailoa making another high-percentage read. He might not be the No. 1 pick, but his is a play-making skill set that’s tantalizing enough to give him the chance to be a franchise quarterback. Burrow might go No. 1 in 2020. Lawrence will go No. 1 next season. Tagovailoa produced at the same level as both in college; if he stays healthy, a productive NFL career will follow.Tagovailoa ended all the speculation Monday, and he left by quoting country music superstar Tim McGraw out the door. Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa closed out a self-described “roller-coaster ride” by choosing to forgo his senior season to enter the 2020 NFL Draft.That was the last turn in what has been the most interesting career arc for a quarterback in recent memory. Tagovailoa could have kept that ride going for one more year and chased the next level of college football immortality like some of his predecessors. In the end, there was nothing left to prove on the college level.