Doctor with vaccine

German Pharma Company Bayer to Produce New COVID Vaccine

German pharmaceutical giant Bayer announced Monday it will help a smaller German biomedical company, CureVac, produce its experimental COVID-19 vaccine, the latest drug maker to offer up manufacturing capacity as supplies fall behind demand worldwide.

At a virtual news conference hosted in Berlin Monday by Health Minister Jens Spahn, Bayer’s pharmaceutical chief, Stefan Oelrich, said the company expects to produce 160 million doses of CureVac’s experimental vaccine, which is currently in late-stage testing, in 2022.

Bayer and CureVac reached an agreement last month to work together on a vaccine. Oelrich said Bayer has experience and capacity to expand CureVac’s production capacity.

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World Coronavirus Dispatch: Pharma Giants Not Prepared For Next Pandemic

One of the most unequal places on the planet with lavish malls on the one side, overcrowded slums on the other, Hong Kong has seen its divide worsening during the first lockdown, brought about by the pandemic. The government had locked down some 10,000 residents in the most popular area neighbouring the Jordan district for almost three weeks after infections surged. Officials said the cramped residential areas may have fuelling the outbreak and admitted the pain of residents living in such spaces with poorer ventilations under lockdown. Critics have blamed the government for allowing the conditions for an outbreak to fester and then imposing heavy-handed measures on a group that can least afford to bear them.

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Male in Pharmaceutical Sciences

Mark Cuban Is Going To Help Big Pharma’s Image

In his terrific book, The Great American Drug Deal, Peter Kolchinsky talks about one of the most common surgical procedures – hip replacements. There are over 400,000 such procedures done in the U.S. annually. In fact, given my age, I now have a handful of friends who have had at least one hip done. Hip replacement surgeries were first carried out in the 1940s and, while the methodology has improved, the procedure is essentially the same today and costs about $40,000 (not including extended nursing and rehabilitation). This surgery cost the U.S. healthcare system about $16 billion in 2019 – a figure that will undoubtedly continue to grow.

Pills in Packaging

Mark Cuban Plans Low-Cost Generic Drugs With Pharma Startup

Mark Cuban is getting involved in generic drugs.

The Dallas Mavericks owner has attached his name to a company that will produce low-cost versions of expensive generic drugs. The Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Company pledges “to provide radical transparency” in how it prices its drugs.

The company will manufacture, distribute, and market its drugs to pharmacies and add a flat 15% margin to get wholesale prices.

The first drug to be produced is albendazole, an anti-parasitic pill that can retail for over $400 per tablet. The company plans to make and distribute the drug for about $13, charge $15 as a wholesale price and set a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $20 per tablet, according to the company’s website.

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Covid Vaccine

N.J. Pharmaceutical Company’s COVID Vaccine Could Be A Game-Changer. Here’s Why

As the nation struggles to scale up its COVID-19 immunization rollout, another vaccine in the works could soon help bridge the gap.

The two vaccines available now — one by Pfizer/BioNTech and another by Moderna — require two doses: a priming shot and then a booster three or four weeks later, depending on which company’s injection you get.

But another vaccine on the horizon — developed by Johnson & Johnson — would require only a single dose. It could be a game-changer for distribution, which continues to drag in New Jersey and beyond.

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Doctor with Vaccine

AM-Pharma Enrolls First Patients in Covid-19 Phase III Trial

AM-Pharma has recruited first patients with Covid-19 infection and sepsis-associated acute kidney injury (SA-AKI) in an exploratory cohort of its phase III REVIVAL pivotal trial.

The phase III randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, two-arm, parallel-group and multi-centre study will assess safety, tolerability and clinical benefit of the company’s human recombinant alkaline phosphatase to treat patients with SA-AKI.

AM-Pharma will recruit up to 1,400 patients with SA-AKI in the main study population. The company will recruit up to 100 patients with moderate chronic kidney disease (CKD) and up to 100 patients with Covid-19 in two exploratory cohorts.

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Capitol Building

Pharma Condemns Pro-Trump ‘Thugs’ and Riots—and Backs Manufacturing Group’s Call For Consequences

Pharma executives and trade groups joined the chorus of voices condemning the pro-Trump insurrection on Capitol Hill yesterday. Speaking up on social media and issuing statements against the mob chaos—as Congress worked to certify President-elect Joseph Biden’s election—industry reps went so far as to support a call to consider removing President Donald Trump from office.

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM)—which counts reps from Pfizer, Merck & Co., Johnson & Johnson, Eli Lilly and Mallinckrodt among its executive committee members—called for consideration of the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office. It condemned the attacks as sedition and placed the blame squarely at his feet.
Doctor with vaccine

Vaccines Boost Big Pharma’s Image, But Won’t Change Its Ways

The development of Covid-19 vaccines in record time will not be enough to fix big pharma’s tarnished image.

In 1955, Jonas Salk, the inventor of the polio vaccine, was asked a question about who owned the patent to the drug. “Well, the people I would say,” he told a journalist. “There is no patent. Could you patent the Sun?”

The widespread availability of an affordable polio vaccine in subsequent years has almost eliminated the disease from the world, saving millions of children from paralysis and death.

A few months back, large American and European pharmaceutical companies in the race to make Covid-19 vaccines were being pushed to follow Salk’s path and keep their research in the public domain.

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Expect More Pharma Corporate Campaigns in 2021 As The Industry Leverages Its COVID-19 Halo

When the pandemic struck, pharma companies picked up their tools and went to work. The industry began accelerated vaccine development, scoured old and new drugs for treatment potential and rushed to create new diagnostics tests.

And, outside the lab, companies pitched in with millions of dollars for contributions of personal protective gear, donations to local community efforts such as food banks and newly launched health inequality efforts.

TV and digital campaigns during the pandemic not only reinforced the industry’s key role in mitigating the pandemic but also doubled down on showcasing its dedication to science.

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Covid Vaccine

Breakingviews – Big Pharma’s Vaccine Immunity Will Be Fleeting

LONDON (Reuters Breakingviews) – Big Pharma’s vaccine victory lap may be cut short. The industry’s triumph in dispensing inoculations less than a year after the discovery of the deadly coronavirus has partially vindicated the business models of groups like Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca. But as governments took on much of the risk, pharma groups’ pricing will remain a target after the pandemic.

Riding to the world’s rescue is a welcome corrective for the battered pharmaceutical industry. In recent years the sector has grappled with bribery scandals and accusations of aggressive pricing, exemplified by Mylan’s decision to hike the price of anti-allergy injection EpiPen by 400%.

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