💊 J&J’s Janssen steps out of RSV vaccine race; UK government hands out pharma grants; China releases more Covid origin data
#308 | Weeds keep your skin wrinkle-free; Binge eating just like OCD; Antarctic ice melt slowing the sea
Hello, and welcome back to The Kable for a little bit of doom and gloom on the climate front and a little optimism in the research space.
First up, J&J's Janssen put out a portfolio review with the surprise announcement that it is killing its RSV vaccine, which is already in late stage trials. This leaves the RSV field open for GSK, Pfizer and maybe Moderna.
The answer to everything is 42. Especially if the question is how many countries are now WHO-certified to be malaria-free. Azerbaijan and Tajikistan are the latest two entrants in the list.
In the UK, the government is giving out grants to manufacturers that have a presence in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Four companies - Ipsen, contract manufacturer Pharmaron, DNA manufacturer Touchlight and diagnostic test producer Randox - will receive a total of £277 million in the first allotment of grants from the Life Sciences Innovative Manufacturing Fund. The fund has received £17 million from the government with the rest coming from private sources. Pharmaron has already planned a facility expansion at its manufacturing unit in Liverpool with the new infusion of funds.
More citizens taking governments to court over climate inaction. This time, it is the elderly in Switzerland taking the legal route.
All the Zero Covid measures from 2022 have had an unexpected outcome in Shanghai which has seen its population dip for the first time in five years.
Egypt's Holdipharma is reported to be building five pharma factories for raw materials in partnership with an as-yet-unnamed Indian company.
In Saudi Arabia, the government has issued an EOI for developing three PPP healthcare projects.
After being urged by the WHO to report case numbers officially, Equatorial Guinea's Ministry of Health has confirmed 13 Marburg cases, with 825 contacts being monitored.
In South Africa, authorities suspect the newest cholera causes were caused by baptism by (river)water.
Bird flu continues to impact global trade, with Namibia pausing poultry imports from Argentina and Chile.
A collaboration between South Africa and the US has received funding for a pilot project to support manufacture of medicines in Sub-Saharan Africa.
And finally, Ghana has ruled that attempted suicide is no longer a crime, with the parliament making it a mental health concern instead.