July 10, 2010
Vaccine manufacturers in India and other developing nations can produce a lower-cost HPV vaccine despite the complicated array of patent protections on the technology, according to an Indian-origin scientist at the Duke Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy.
At a cost of at least 300dollars for the three-dose regimen, the blockbuster HPV vaccines, including Gardasil from Merck and Cervarix from GlaxoSmithKline, are some of the most expensive ever introduced.
Subhashini Chandrasekharan, a researcher within the IGSP’s Center for Genome Ethics, Law and Policy, said: “Three hundred dollars is a lot of money, and when you consider the disproportionate burden of HPV-induced cervical cancer on low-income countries, the potential for disparity becomes even more obvious. We wanted to address one of the barriers to producing a cheaper vaccine.”
Other easy-to-make vaccines (e.g. polio) are manufactured in countries like India for costs less than 2dollars per dose, she explained.
But that may not work for newer vaccines as companies and others are increasingly seeking patent protections on their products in developing countries. That has only become possible in recent years since developing countries including India have signed on to World Trade Organization agreements designed to narrow the gaps in the way intellectual property rights are granted around the world.
Signatories of these IP agreements are now required to grant patents on the compositions of biomedical products as well as the processes used to make them. Until now, the absence of product patents had allowed developing country manufacturers to make cheaper generic drugs or vaccines without infringing patents as long as they used alternate methods to get there.
In this study, the researchers gathered and analysed all of the HPV vaccine-related patents that have so far been granted in the U.S. and internationally. That IP landscape is complex, with at least 81 U.S. patents granted to date. The researchers focused their attention on India, where 19 of 86 international patent applications had been filed by the close of 2008.
India is of special interest because it bears nearly 25 percent of the global cervical cancer burden and is a main supplier of childhood vaccines to agencies like the World Health Organization. Its growing middle class is also a potentially large market for the sale of HPV vaccines, Chandrasekharan said.
Ok – so here is my take on this. Gardasil has taken the hit for three years…it is obvious it is causing harm and injury…so like a virus the vaccine manufacturers are creating new strains with new names…..oooh, I feel a press release coming on…..
So no more – universal HPV vaccine name like Gardasil or Cervarix….which has been very quiet lately – must be some sneaky marketing people up in those offices…..but now there is Silgard – these new vaccines in India – and Canada has a new one in clinical trials with even more aluminum in it – oh yum.
So you see what this will do? No vaccine reporting system. The US will only post vaccines in the United States even though some reports have come in from around the world on Gardasil….and there will no longer be any way to keep track of injury and death.
Poor innocent women – harmed by a vaccine – We can call it the “Vaccine with No Name.”