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As Delta wreaks havoc, Biden faces growing pressure to force big Pharma to share vaccine recipes

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02.08.2021

With a proposed patent waiver for coronavirus vaccines still mired in fruitless talks at the World Trade Organization, U.S. President Biden is facing growing calls to use his legal authority to force pharmaceutical giants to share their vaccine recipes as governments around the world race to combat the fast-spreading Delta variant.

The U.S. government currently owns the patent for critical spike-protein technology developed by the National Institutes of Health. That technology, which helps trigger an immune response against the coronavirus, has been utilized by at least five companies in the development of vaccines, including Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson.

Thus far, the Biden administration has declined to leverage the government's ownership of the so-called '070 patent to force Big Pharma to share its vaccine formulas with manufacturers around the world, despite being urged to do so by the NIH scientist who helped develop the spike-protein technology.

But with the ultra-contagious Delta variant ripping through undervaccinated regions of the world, public health campaigners are ramping up pressure on Biden to act as pharmaceutical giants refuse to voluntarily take part in technology-sharing efforts.

"The U.S. government has power to share vaccine manufacturing knowledge and help other countries scale up production and finally end this pandemic. Millions of people have lost their lives waiting for such desperately needed action," Peter Maybarduk, director of Public Citizen's Access to........

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