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Ignoring behavioral and social sciences undermines the U.S. response to Covid-19

Infectious disease epidemics like Covid-19 and HIV are fundamentally about pathogens that are transmitted by humans in social contexts. Halting their spread requires insights from beyond the biomedical sciences.

Inappropriate march-in actions would jeopardize public-private partnerships that make lifesaving medicines possible

Biopharma companies, policymakers, patients, and all stakeholders must address the affordability of medicines in responsible, measured ways, not through short-sighted proposals that would discourage public-private innovation.

Pfizer made Trump’s vaccine push harder than it needed to be, former Warp Speed official alleges in new book

“Of all the companies in which we invested, Pfizer was both the least transparent and least collaborative,” a former Operation Warp Speed official writes in a new book.

STAT announces 46 inaugural STATUS List honorees

For Immediate Release: February 22, 2022 Media Contact: Maria Landron | [email protected] The STATUS List is the most definitive accounting of important and impactful individuals in health, medicine, and science With the premiere of “Augmented,” a bevy of notable hires, and now the STATUS List, STAT continues to expand its reach and influence BOSTON — STAT,…

Inside the culture of fear in Eric Lander’s White House science office

When staffers in Eric Lander’s White House science office thought of the adjectives that described their work environment, three words stood out: hostile, siloed, and aggressive.

Biden to tap Francis Collins, OSTP deputy to split the role of his ousted science adviser

Biden is expected to tap Francis Collins and OSTP deputy Alondra Nelson to split the role of his ousted science adviser, Eric Lander.

Francis Collins

For a remarkable 12 years, Collins oversaw one of the crown jewels of U.S. biomedical research: the National Institutes of Health. He stepped down at the end of 2021, but not before becoming one of the most respected U.S. health officials in Washington, having served in the Clinton, Bush, Obama, Trump, and Biden administrations. Although…

Following Lander’s resignation, here’s who might be in line for White House science adviser

Among the rumored candidates to replace Eric Lander as White House science adviser, five names stood out.

Lander: New cancer plan ‘more ambitious by far’ than original moonshot

Biden’s science adviser says the latest Cancer Moonshot effort is “more ambitious by far” than the Obama administration’s first attempt in 2016.

Key lawmaker: ARPA-H won’t be part of NIH

The NIH director had lobbied for ARPA-H to be a subunit of NIH, but many of the outside experts who first conceived of the concept urged that it be a standalone entity.

Biden once pledged to ‘cure cancer.’ His new approach is far more modest

Biden has been pledging to “cure” cancer for the past six years, beginning with his moonshot effort as vice president. But the new effort he’s launching Wednesday is far more modest.

Will the Biden administration approach march-in rights like Trump? Fight over pricey cancer drug offers a test

"The main question here is whether this case is extreme enough that NIH will finally invoke an authority it has bent over backward to avoid using."

Key senators propose an overhaul of how the U.S. prepares for pandemics

A powerful, bipartisan duo of senators wants to empower Congress to ensure the government’s response to the next pandemic is far smoother than it was on Covid-19.

Pushback to Covid-19 vaccines remains stubbornly high among white evangelicals

“Some [pushback] came from mixing politics with positions of faith, which I think when it comes to vaccines has been pretty unfortunate," said former NIH Director Francis Collins.

At a time when the U.S. needed Covid-19 dialogue between scientists, Francis Collins moved to shut it down

Had Collins, a man who has contributed greatly to science, chose dialogue instead of contributing to animosity and combativeness, we might have been in a better place today.

Oxfam wants the SEC to investigate Moderna for ‘misleading’ investors about its Covid patent dispute with NIH

Oxfam America has filed a complaint with securities regulators accusing Moderna of providing “misleading statements” and concealing material information about its dispute with the U.S. government over Covid-19 vaccine patents.

Former DARPA director: Biden’s new science agency should be independent, not an NIH office

The former director of DARPA, the Pentagon’s high-stakes research arm, says that for an equivalent health care agency to succeed, it should be fully separated from the NIH. #STATSummit

Biden taps Califf to head FDA — an agency where he has plenty of unfinished business

Robert Califf, Biden’s new pick to lead the FDA, doesn’t have much to show for his first tenure at the agency. Now he'll have a second chance to deliver on his initial promises.

Pharmalittle: NIH to fight Moderna in court over Covid-19 vaccine patents; ‘puzzling’ results in an Alzheimer’s study

NIH director says its scientists played "a major role" in developing the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine and the agency intends to defend its claim as co-owner of patents.

‘There was no plan’: Throwing spaghetti at the wall to overcome Covid-19 vaccine hesitancy

There’s a remarkable range of methods devised to overcome vaccine hesitancy. While some of these ideas have stuck like spaghetti thrown against a wall, it’s not clear which are most effective.

Public-private partnership launched to accelerate gene therapies for rare diseases

With $76 million over five years, the Bespoke Gene Therapy Consortium will fund research into improving manufacturing processes and standardizing methods for preclinical testing.

Eight years after a landmark Supreme Court ruling on DNA ownership, its ramifications are becoming clearer

What’s going to become more and more important is the effect the decision had on using CRISPR genome editing to recreate protective gene variants, says “The Genome Defense” author Jorge Contreras.

In its search for a new FDA commissioner, the White House is relying on insiders for advice

While there’s still no clear pick for Biden’s FDA commissioner, STAT’s @NicholasFlorko has key new details about the vetting process and who’s been interviewed.

Pharmalittle: Most Americans support Medicare drug price negotiations; Moderna refuses to share its Covid-19 vaccine secret sauce

A large majority of Americans support allowing the U.S. government to negotiate for Medicare drugs, a Kaiser Family Foundation poll shows.

Francis Collins’ resignation could complicate the fight over funding for ARPA-H

Francis Collins will soon step down as NIH director. That could complicate the Biden administration’s plans to launch a new research agency.

Listen: Shkreli on film, the next NIH director, and a looming FDA deadline

Did we learn anything from the Martin Shkreli saga? Who will run the NIH? And what does science owe Henrietta Lacks? All that and more on the latest episode of "The Readout LOUD." Listen now:

Here’s who might replace Francis Collins as NIH director

Among the names instantly singled out as the potential next NIH director: Jennifer Doudna, the Nobel-winning biochemist best known for her work on CRISPR.

Pharmalittle: Francis Collins to step down as NIH director; Research confirms decline in Pfizer vaccine protection against ‘breakthrough’ infection

NIH director Francis Collins, who led the U.S. government effort to map the human genetic code and two decades later became one of the most recognizable leaders in the battle against Covid-19, will leave his post by the end of this year.

NIH Director Francis Collins to step down

Francis Collins, the longtime head of the National Institutes of Health, will announce his coming retirement on Tuesday.