💊 The last roll of the HIV vaccine dice; South Africa's combination vaccine success; Bayer's Parkinson's therapy success
#415 | Making E. coli glow; Overselling carbon offset impact; Climate change coming for your food
Hello there. Welcome back to an all-new week with the same old Kable. Before you get to reading, here’s something for you to watch —the opening ceremony of the 73rd Session of the WHO Regional Committee for Africa.
In Bangladesh, the dengue conversation has been largely focused on the capital city of Dhaka. In reality, however, the number of dengue cases is much higher outside this urban centre, with the disease having spread to 64 districts. People outside Dhaka are also being affected by a different type of mosquito. But epidemiologists claim no one actually knows the real state of the disease spread outside Dhaka. Experts are also calling for regular fund allocations for the health department to deal with outbreaks like this one. The current response remains inadequate. At a meeting yesterday – jointly organized by the Health Ministry, the disease control wing of Directorate General Health Services, and UNICEF – some of the country’s top epidemiologists, entomologists, and public health experts were not even invited.
India’s Sun Pharma hopes to integrate its dermatology business to keep reaping profits in an increasingly competitive market. The company wants to fully acquire its Israel-based unit, Taro Pharmaceutical Industries, through a reverse triangular merger. Sun Pharma already owns 78% of Taro.
In some courtroom drama to spice up today’s light edition, we’re looking at the patent wars relating to Covid vaccines. Last year, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals sued Moderna and Pfizer over using the lipid nanoparticle, or LNP, technology to enable their vaccines to deliver mRNA. The Delaware District Court made its ruling. Alnylam intends to appeal the ruling. The action continues.
And finally, Big Pharma Bayer’s US subsidiary BlueRock has been preparing for a battle against Parkinson’s – it had given us a brief summary of its success in June. Now, the company has revealed that its experimental stem cell therapy eased Parkinson’s symptoms in the 12-patient, phase 1 clinical trial. There were no major safety issues. Patient enrollment for phase 2 will begin in the first half of next year.