Moderna Sues Pfizer/BioNTech Over Covid-19 Vaccine Patent Infringement | vaccines

Moderna is suing Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech for patent infringement in developing the Covid-19 vaccine, claiming they copied technology that Moderna developed years before the pandemic (messenger RNA).

The lawsuit, which seeks indefinite monetary damages, is being filed in the US District Court in Massachusetts and the Dusseldorf Regional Court in Germany, Moderna said in a press release on Friday.

“We are filing these lawsuits to protect the innovative mRNA technology platform that we pioneered, invested billions of dollars in creating and patented during the decade prior to the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Moderna Chief Executive Stephane Bancel. , in a statement.

In response, Pfizer said it was taken aback by the process and would “vigorately” defend itself against the charge. According to the company, the technology used in the manufacture of the immunizer is owned by BioNTech.

“Pfizer/BioNTech has not yet fully reviewed the claim, but is surprised by the litigation given that the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was based on mRNA technology owned by BioNTech and developed by BioNTech and Pfizer. We remain confident in our intellectual property that supports and sustains the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine and will vigorously defend ourselves against the allegations in the lawsuit.”

vaccine development

Moderna Inc MRNA.O and the Pfizer Inc partnership PFE.N and BioNTech SE 22UAy.DE were two of the first groups to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.

Just a decade old, Moderna was an innovator in messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine technology that enabled unprecedented speed in Covid-19 vaccine development.

An approval process that once took years was completed in months, thanks in large part to advances in mRNA vaccines, which teach human cells to produce a protein that will trigger an immune response.

BioNTech, based in Germany, was also working in this field when it partnered with American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer.

Pfizer/BioNTech messenger RNA vaccine — Photo: Mariana Ferreira/Government of Tocantins

The US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization for the Covid-19 vaccine first to Pfizer/BioNTech in December 2020 and a week later to Moderna.

Moderna alleges that Pfizer/BioNTech, without permission, copied the mRNA technology that Moderna had patented between 2010 and 2016, well before Covid-19 broke out in 2019 and exploded in early 2020.

Early in the pandemic, Moderna said it would not apply its patents to help other companies develop their own vaccines, particularly for low- and middle-income countries. But in March 2022, Moderna said it expected companies like Pfizer and BioNTech to respect its intellectual property rights. The company said it would not seek compensation for any activity before March 8, 2022.

Patent litigation is not uncommon in the early stages of a new technology.

Other legal proceedings

Pfizer and BioNTech are already facing multiple lawsuits from other companies that say the partnership vaccine infringes on their patents. Pfizer/BioNTech said it will vigorously defend its patents.

Germany’s CureVac 5cv.DE, for example, also filed a lawsuit against BioNTech in Germany in July. BioNTech responded in a statement that their work was original.

Moderna has also been sued for patent infringement in the United States and has an ongoing dispute with the US National Institutes of Health over the rights to the mRNA technology.

In Friday’s statement, Moderna said that Pfizer/BioNTech had appropriated two types of intellectual property.

One involved an mRNA structure that Moderna says its scientists began developing in 2010 and were the first to validate in human trials in 2015.

“Pfizer and BioNTech took four different vaccine candidates for clinical trials, which included options that would have avoided Moderna’s innovative path. Pfizer and BioNTech, however, decided to go ahead with a vaccine that has the exact same chemical modification as mRNA,” Moderna said in its statement.

The second alleged breach involves encoding a full-length spike protein that Moderna says its scientists developed when creating a vaccine for the coronavirus that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

While the MERS vaccine never made it to market, its development helped Moderna quickly launch its Covid-19 vaccine.

Source link

About Admin

Check Also

Next variant should be more lethal than Omicron | metropolises

Virologist Alex Sigal, from the Africa Health Research Institute in Durban, South Africa, believes that …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *