Ten COVID-19 vaccines seen by mid-year, head of global pharma group says - (London South East via NewsPoints Desk)

  • Thomas Cueni, head of the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and Associations (IFPMA), says 10 COVID-19 vaccines could be available by the middle of next year if they win regulatory approval, as reported by London South East.

  • Vaccines by Pfizer/BioNTech, as well as Moderna and AstraZeneca have so far shown promising results in large clinical trials, the news source said.

  • "I would expect that we will see something similar with Johnson & Johnson, I would expect that we would see similar positive results with Novavax, and many others, Sanofi Pasteur, GlaxoSmithKline are in there, Merck & Co.," Cueni added.

  • However, he suggested it would be a mistake to lift patent protection to allow compulsory licensing and try to make vaccines requiring such complex quality assurance without expert staff and quality control procedures.

  • At the World Trade Organization, India and South Africa have proposed allowing a temporary waiver to allow compulsory licensing for patented products during the pandemic, although officials say the US, EU, Switzerland and others have rejected the proposal.

  • Asked about the idea, Cueni said "for me this questioning of [intellectual property] is really primarily politics, but it's politics which is not helpful because it would send very negative signals in terms of disrespect to the system which allowed the world to react so fast and so responsibly."

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