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HAVANA — Cuba’s government-run biotech industry is one of the lesser-known legacies of Fidel Castro: It employs 22,000 scientists, engineers, and technicians on modern campuses here, sells drugs in 23 countries, and wants to bring its products to the United States. But Donald Trump’s election may prevent that, say Cuba experts and scientists in both countries.

Trump pledged during the campaign to roll back President Barack Obama’s opening to Cuba “to get a better deal” for the United States, and he recently named a hardline opponent of normalized relations to his transition team. Castro’s death last month only adds to the uncertainty about the direction of US-Cuban relations.


While Trump hasn’t specifically spoken about scientific cooperation between the countries, some of his early statements and tweets “have raised the specter of a sharp reversal of Obama’s policy of positive engagement toward Cuba,” said Richard Feinberg, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a former special assistant to President Bill Clinton for national security affairs. “It would be folly to deprive US citizens of access to potential life-saving drugs simply to satisfy a declining gaggle of aging [Cuban] exiles in Miami.”

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  • The progress seems very positive for a small Country, BUT as someone that has family on the island, I hear stories of the clinical trials on humans espacially HIV. We have various clinical trial stages in the US regulated by the FDA. I would like to hear the process behind Cuba’s clinical trials and who regulates it. Remember this is a Country that denies the most basic human civil liberties.

  • I can’t believe that people are already being so negative. President Trump hasn’t taken office and the writer makes it sound like the wolves are the door of the hen house trying to break the walls down, and steal all the eggs.

    Give it a rest and let’s see what happens. Then we can really see what the short-term and long-term will be. Speculation can be worse than what reality will bring or not bring.

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