UK news

‘Wall of secrecy’ in Pfizer contracts as company accused of profiteering

US company faces scrutiny over Covid profits after UK agrees to secrecy clause Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Ministers have agreed a secrecy clause in any dispute with the drugs manufacturer Pfizer over Britain’s Covid vaccine supply. Large portions of the government’s contracts with the company over the supply of 189m …

‘Wall of secrecy’ in Pfizer contracts as company accused of profiteering Read More »

US author to give away £10,000 prize cash over role of sponsor in opioid crisis

Investigative reporter Patrick Radden Keefe will give money from business book of the year shortlisting to charity over involvement of McKinsey firm The American writer Patrick Radden Keefe has said he will give away the £10,000 he was awarded by a book prize whose sponsor helped to sell the opioid painkiller OxyContin. Radden Keefe’s damning …

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UK ministers secure 114m more Covid vaccines for next two years

Extra Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna jabs for 2022 and 2023 ordered to ‘future proof’ vaccine programme Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Ministers in the UK have secured new contracts to buy 114m more Covid-19 vaccines for the next two years. The deals, for 2022 and 2023, were accelerated after the emergence of …

UK ministers secure 114m more Covid vaccines for next two years Read More »

Prince Harry compares Covid vaccine inequity to HIV struggle

Duke of Sussex says on World Aids Day that vaccinating the world against Covid is ‘test of our moral character’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Duke of Sussex has warned of “corporate greed and political failure” prolonging the Covid pandemic, comparing a “spectacular failure” of global vaccine equity to the …

Prince Harry compares Covid vaccine inequity to HIV struggle Read More »

Boris Johnson ‘ignored’ my plan to tackle deadly Covid variants – senior official

Former head of vaccine taskforce says No 10 has not acted on his blueprint to prepare UK for new strains Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boris Johnson has been accused of ignoring a senior official’s plan to prepare Britain for the emergence of vaccine-resistant Covid variants, the Observer can reveal. With …

Boris Johnson ‘ignored’ my plan to tackle deadly Covid variants – senior official Read More »

‘Follow the science’: AstraZeneca unveils £1bn R&D centre

Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company has come a long way since it fought off a takeover bid in 2014 Little expense has been spared at the giant glass and steel structure that sprouts from a once-vacant plot of land on the outskirts of Cambridge. AstraZeneca’s £1bn new research and development centre houses 16 labs and 2,200 scientists, …

‘Follow the science’: AstraZeneca unveils £1bn R&D centre Read More »

AstraZeneca CEO links Europe’s Covid surge to rejection of its vaccine

Scientists sceptical about Pascal Soriot’s suggestion Oxford jab may give longer-lasting protection Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Scientists have reacted with scepticism to claims by AstraZeneca’s CEO that low uptake of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab among elderly Europeans could explain the current surge in Covid-19 infections in mainland Europe. Pascal Soriot told …

AstraZeneca CEO links Europe’s Covid surge to rejection of its vaccine Read More »

New HIV jabs taken two months apart hailed as huge step forward

Safe injectable antiretroviral drugs, approved by health bodies, ‘could lift burden of daily oral therapy’ Thousands of people living with HIV in Britain are to be freed from the burden of taking daily pills, after health chiefs gave the green light for a revolutionary treatment by injection every two months. Draft guidance from the National …

New HIV jabs taken two months apart hailed as huge step forward Read More »

UK firm to trial T-cell Covid vaccine that could give longer immunity

Exclusive: Oxfordshire-based Emergex gets go-ahead for trials in Switzerland for skin patch vaccine Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage An Oxfordshire-based company will soon start clinical trials of a second-generation vaccine against Covid-19, an easy-to-administer skin patch that uses T-cells to kill infected cells and could offer longer-lasting immunity than current vaccines. …

UK firm to trial T-cell Covid vaccine that could give longer immunity Read More »

Yes, DeepMind crunches the numbers – but is it really a magic bullet? | John Naughton

The machine learning outfit’s foray into pharmaceuticals could be very useful, but its grand claims should be taken with a pinch of salt The most interesting development of the week had nothing to do with Facebook or even Google losing its appeal against a €2.4bn fine from the European commission for abusing its monopoly of …

Yes, DeepMind crunches the numbers – but is it really a magic bullet? | John Naughton Read More »

AstraZeneca sells $2.2bn of Covid vaccine in first nine months

Drugmaker says it expects to transition to ‘modest profitability’ as it receives new orders Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca has sold more than $2.2bn (£1.64bn) of its Covid-19 vaccine in the first nine months of this year, as the drugmaker said it is set to move to “modest profitability” as …

AstraZeneca sells $2.2bn of Covid vaccine in first nine months Read More »

AstraZeneca to create dedicated Covid vaccines unit

Move intended to make it easier to continue producing coronavirus shot over the long term Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca is to create a new vaccines unit as the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker plans for the future of its coronavirus shot beyond the pandemic. The company said the reorganisation would bring together …

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Infected blood scandal: firm claimed products were safe despite using untested donors

Armour UK also aware two people who had used its products had tested HIV positive, the inquiry heard A pharmaceutical company continued to insist its blood products were safe despite knowing it had used untested donors and that two people who had used the products had tested HIV positive, the infected blood inquiry has heard. …

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Pfizer raises Covid-19 vaccine sales forecast to $36bn for 2021

US drugmaker expects to manufacture 3bn doses of vaccine with BioNTech this year Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The US drugmaker Pfizer has lifted its 2021 forecast for revenues from its Covid vaccine to $36bn (£26.3bn), after bumper sales in the third quarter. The Covid jab, called Comirnaty and developed with …

Pfizer raises Covid-19 vaccine sales forecast to $36bn for 2021 Read More »

‘No evidence’ conflicts of interest were considered in Greensill contracts – NAO

National Audit Office reviewed NHS and pharmacy pay contracts given to David Cameron’s former adviser Whitehall’s independent watchdog has found “no evidence” that ministers or officials considered potential conflicts of interest before giving the disgraced financier Lex Greensill government contracts just months after he had left a job as a No 10 adviser. The National …

‘No evidence’ conflicts of interest were considered in Greensill contracts – NAO Read More »

Post-lockdown colds spur sales at Strepsils and Nurofen maker

Reckitt Benckiser records better than expected results after rise in cases of coughs and flu Reckitt Benckiser enjoyed better than expected results thanks to demand for its treatments for coughs, colds and flu, following a rise in cases after the lifting of global lockdowns. The Berkshire-based consumer goods company recorded a “sharp improvement” in demand …

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UK drugmaker GSK under fresh pressure to sell consumer arm

Hedge fund Bluebell also demands replacement of GlaxoSmithKline chairman Sir Jonathan Symonds The British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline has come under fresh pressure to sell off its consumer arm and carry out a change of leadership, with a hedge fund demanding the appointment of a new chairman. Bluebell Capital Partners, an activist London-based hedge fund that has …

UK drugmaker GSK under fresh pressure to sell consumer arm Read More »

Coronavirus treatments: the potential ‘game-changers’ in development

After positive clinical trials for antiviral drug Molnupiravir, it joins other medicines that have shown promise Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The first clinical trial results showing a positive effect for a pill that can be taken at home has been hailed as a potential gamechanger that could provide a new …

Coronavirus treatments: the potential ‘game-changers’ in development Read More »

Welsh scientist makes potential $539m fortune from biotech flotation in US

Value of Andrew Hopkins’ Exscientia firm reaches market value of $2.9bn in Nasdaq IPO A Welsh scientist who dreamed up his artificial intelligence biotech company while walking home from the laboratory is sitting on a potential $539m (£400m) paper fortune after its $2.9bn stock market float. The idea for Exscientia, an Oxford-based firm that uses …

Welsh scientist makes potential $539m fortune from biotech flotation in US Read More »

UK pharmacies in dark about ministers’ plan to maintain drug supplies

Chemists wait for details of measures to ensure driver shortages do not adversely affect deliveries of prescription drugs Pharmacists are waiting for details from the government about what measures are in place to deal with any delays to deliveries of drug supplies as a result of van driver shortages. If the situation worsens, pharmacists have …

UK pharmacies in dark about ministers’ plan to maintain drug supplies Read More »

Yes, drugs are overprescribed: but it’s not the fault of GPs | Letters

Fragmented care means patients can be put on drugs by many different specialists, says Charles Warlow, while Dr Wendy Outwin highlights the daily reality of prescribing medicines Ministers seem to have found yet another way to bash overburdened GPs (Government review finds 10% of drugs dispensed in England are pointless, 22 September). There is nothing …

Yes, drugs are overprescribed: but it’s not the fault of GPs | Letters Read More »

Ministers told to bar EU from UK trial data in vaccines row

England’s deputy medical chief asked for data to be withheld unless British vaccine guinea pigs allowed to travel abroad • Coronavirus – latest updates• See all our coronavirus coverage England’s deputy chief medical officer asked ministers to withhold all UK clinical trial data from the EU if European countries continued to deny entry to British …

Ministers told to bar EU from UK trial data in vaccines row Read More »

GSK teams with King’s College to use AI to fight cancer

Artificial intelligence will be used to develop personalised treatments while investigating role of genetics The pharmaceuticals firm GSK has struck a five-year partnership with King’s College London to use artificial intelligence to develop personalised treatments for cancer by investigating the role played by genetics in the disease. The tie-up, which involves 10 of the drug …

GSK teams with King’s College to use AI to fight cancer Read More »

UK cancels Covid vaccine deal with French firm Valneva

Government serves notice to terminate contract over allegations of a ‘breach of obligations’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK government is to pull out of a deal with the French pharmaceutical company Valneva to purchase its Covid-19 vaccination, the company has said. The move will come as a blow to …

UK cancels Covid vaccine deal with French firm Valneva Read More »

Major shareholder’s Rolls-Royce grumble could rumble on

Vague demand for board refresh from Causeway likely a hangover from £2bn rights issue The last time Rolls-Royce had an US activist fund on its tail, the aero-engine manufacturer took the unusual step of inviting one of its representatives onto the board. ValueAct Capital was judged to have constructive ideas and useful industry expertise. The …

Major shareholder’s Rolls-Royce grumble could rumble on Read More »

Boots launches on-demand delivery trial with Deliveroo

Customers can order medicines for mild ailments, makeup, toiletries and more from 14 stores The pharmacy chain Boots will become the latest large retailer to make its products available through Deliveroo, as the takeaway delivery company aims to expand beyond restaurant orders. Stores in London, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Nottingham will be among the 14 initially …

Boots launches on-demand delivery trial with Deliveroo Read More »

UK approves rollout of ‘first of its kind’ Covid antibody treatment

Ronapreve can be used to treat symptoms of acute infection after successful clinical trials Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The medicines regulator has approved use of the first treatment in the UK using artificial antibodies to prevent and fight Covid-19. The health secretary, Sajid Javid, said approval of the first drug …

UK approves rollout of ‘first of its kind’ Covid antibody treatment Read More »

Breast cancer drug approved for NHS after maker agrees discount

Reversal of earlier rejection by Nice of abemaciclib – known as Verzenios – is welcomed by campaigners A breast cancer drug that was rejected for routine NHS use in England earlier this year has now been recommended by health officials after a discount was agreed with the manufacturer. The decision has been described as “fantastic …

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Covid-19 vaccines: the contracts, prices and profits

Raised charges and Covax deals on order books of Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna and AstraZeneca Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Two US companies, Pfizer and Moderna, have raised the prices of their Covid-19 vaccines after data from clinical trials showed their mRNA formula was more effective than cheaper vaccines from Britain’s AstraZeneca …

Covid-19 vaccines: the contracts, prices and profits Read More »

UK orders extra Covid vaccines for autumn 2022 booster campaign

Pfizer reportedly asked to supply 35m more doses, with final go-ahead for this year’s programme still awaited Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Ministers have started ordering vaccines for a booster campaign in autumn 2022, with Pfizer reportedly being asked to supply the UK with a further 35m doses. The government has …

UK orders extra Covid vaccines for autumn 2022 booster campaign Read More »

UK could allow animal tests for cosmetic ingredients for first time since 1998

Exclusive: campaigners say aligning with EU ruling on chemical testing will ‘blow a hole’ in UK leadership on cruelty-free cosmetics Ministers have opened the door to expanding the use of animal testing to ingredients used in cosmetic products for the first time in 23 years, an animal welfare charity has said. Cruelty Free International (CFI) …

UK could allow animal tests for cosmetic ingredients for first time since 1998 Read More »

Carlyle ups bid for inhaler firm Vectura, trumping tobacco giant Philip Morris

Offer for UK company from Marlboro cigarettes maker had alarmed medical experts US private equity firm Carlyle has made an improved £958m takeover offer for British inhaler maker Vectura, trumping an earlier bid from tobacco company Philip Morris International that had alarmed medical experts. Carlyle said on Friday it would offer 155p a share for …

Carlyle ups bid for inhaler firm Vectura, trumping tobacco giant Philip Morris Read More »

Pfizer and Flynn accused of overcharging NHS for anti-epilepsy drugs

Competition regulator the CMA alleges drugs firms abused dominant position with unfairly high prices Pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Flynn have been accused by the UK’s competition watchdog of illegally overcharging the NHS for vital anti-epilepsy drugs by abusing their dominance in the market to raise prices overnight. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has confirmed …

Pfizer and Flynn accused of overcharging NHS for anti-epilepsy drugs Read More »

Covid drug could help reduce heavy menstrual bleeding

Trial suggests anti-inflammatory dexamethasone may offer welcome alternative to intra-uterine system Researchers hope a steroid that shot to prominence during the Covid pandemic may help reduce blood loss in those who experience heavy periods. The cheap anti-inflammatory dexamethasone was discovered to improve survival rates among patients critically ill with Covid. It is also used for …

Covid drug could help reduce heavy menstrual bleeding Read More »

Drug firm that hiked prices by 6,000% paid shareholders £400m

Advanz Pharma and former private equity owners were fined £100m by markets watchdog A pharmaceuticals firm that inflated thyroid drug prices by up to 6,000% over a decade paid out more than £400m to shareholders and directors during the same period. London-based Advanz Pharma – and its former private equity owners HgCapital and Cinven – …

Drug firm that hiked prices by 6,000% paid shareholders £400m Read More »

Pain aggravation: the human cost of medicine price hikes

After Advanz’s £100m fine over the price of its thyroid tablets, two people recount the difficulty of obtaining medication The UK’s competition watchdog has fined pharmaceutical company Advanz over £100m for inflating the price of its thyroid tablets by up to 6,000%. The exorbitant costs resulted in NHS clinical commissioning groups advising doctors not to …

Pain aggravation: the human cost of medicine price hikes Read More »

Price gouging fine for Advanz is a rare story that is becoming common | Phillip Inman

Competition and Markets Authority is working on a string of cases involving the NHS being overcharged for drugs A fine by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) for unfair pricing by private health companies is a rare story that looks set to become increasingly common. This week’s example is the £100m penalty dished out to …

Price gouging fine for Advanz is a rare story that is becoming common | Phillip Inman Read More »

AstraZeneca sales of Covid vaccine triple to $1.2bn in first half of 2021

Not-for-profit pledge sees British firm’s sales revenue fall significantly short of US rival Pfizer Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine has brought in $1.2bn (£900m) in the first half of this year, with sales tripling in the second quarter from the first – but its earnings remained significantly below …

AstraZeneca sales of Covid vaccine triple to $1.2bn in first half of 2021 Read More »

Pharma firm Advanz fined after thyroid drug price hike of 6,000%

CMA found company’s ‘excessive and unfair’ prices cost NHS almost £30m extra over 10 years The UK’s competition watchdog has imposed fines of more than £100m on the pharmaceutical company Advanz and its former private equity owners after it was found to have inflated the price of its thyroid tablets by up to 6,000%. An …

Pharma firm Advanz fined after thyroid drug price hike of 6,000% Read More »

GSK plans £400m life sciences campus in Stevenage

Pharmaceuticals firm thinks creating cluster of companies at its site could result in up to 5,000 jobs GlaxoSmithKline is seeking to create a £400m campus in Stevenage for new life sciences companies that it believes could result in up to 5,000 jobs over the next decade. The pharmaceuticals company has kicked off a process to …

GSK plans £400m life sciences campus in Stevenage Read More »

UK drug companies fined £260m for inflating prices for NHS

Watchdog issues warning after abuses that included paying would-be rivals to stay out of the market The UK’s competition watchdog has imposed fines totalling more than £260m on pharmaceutical companies after an investigation found that they overcharged the NHS for hydrocortisone tablets for almost a decade. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) found that the …

UK drug companies fined £260m for inflating prices for NHS Read More »

Philip Morris International makes £1bn offer for pharma firm Vectura

Tobacco company strikes deal for British firm developing pioneering inhaled treatment for Covid-19 Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Philip Morris International, the tobacco company and maker of Marlboro cigarettes, has struck a £1bn deal to buy Vectura, the British pharmaceutical company developing a pioneering inhaled treatment for Covid-19. The £1.04bn offer …

Philip Morris International makes £1bn offer for pharma firm Vectura Read More »

Oxford drugs firm gains $1.5m Gates grant for Covid-19 therapy

Exclusive: Exscientia to use AI in proposed fast-track development of ‘low-cost’ pill for Sars viruses Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Exscientia, an Oxford-based firm that uses artificial intelligence to develop medicines, has won a $1.5m grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to create a Covid-19 treatment that also works …

Oxford drugs firm gains $1.5m Gates grant for Covid-19 therapy Read More »

UK supercomputer Cambridge-1 to hunt for medical breakthroughs

Computer – the most powerful in Britain – will use AI to find new cures and deepen understanding of diseases The UK’s most powerful supercomputer, which its creators hope will make the process of preventing, diagnosing and treating disease better, faster and cheaper, is operational. Christened Cambridge-1, the supercomputer represents a $100m investment by US-based …

UK supercomputer Cambridge-1 to hunt for medical breakthroughs Read More »

Million Pfizer jabs face being dumped after Israel-UK swap deal fails

Israel says technical issues have scuppered deal to give UK Covid vaccines expiring on 30 July Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage More than a million Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine doses held in Israel that are due to expire at the end of July may be thrown away after attempts to broker a swap …

Million Pfizer jabs face being dumped after Israel-UK swap deal fails Read More »

Nissan hasn’t put UK ahead in electric race, it’s just got it off the starting grid

The first stage of the Nissan project in Sunderland will deliver 9GWh of capacity but there is a very long way to go in this ‘race’ One can’t grumble too much about ministers’ ra-ra tone over Nissan’s plans to build an electric battery plant, or gigafactory, in Sunderland as part of a £1bn project. The …

Nissan hasn’t put UK ahead in electric race, it’s just got it off the starting grid Read More »

Activist investor Elliott tries to force GSK boss to reapply for her job

US hedge fund ratchets up pressure on Dame Emma Walmsley before company’s demerger next year The US activist investor Elliott Management has in effect demanded Dame Emma Walmsley reapply for her job as chief executive of GlaxoSmithKline before the pharmaceutical company’s demerger of its consumer healthcare division next year. In a 17-page public letter (pdf) …

Activist investor Elliott tries to force GSK boss to reapply for her job Read More »

The Oxford vaccine: the trials and tribulations of a world-saving jab

Amid bemusement from scientists at the deluge of often undeserved criticism, the Guardian pieces together the story behind the vaccine’s successes and failures Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In January 2020, when most of the world slept soundly in ignorance of the pandemic coming its way, a group of scientists at …

The Oxford vaccine: the trials and tribulations of a world-saving jab Read More »

Drug firms giving MPs ‘hidden’ funding, research shows

Pharmaceutical industry has “hidden web of policy influence” over dozens of all-party parliamentary groups Drug companies are giving groups of MPs and peers that campaign on health issues hundreds of thousands of pounds a year in “hidden” funding that could hand them “undue influence”, research has found. The pharmaceutical industry has built up a “hidden …

Drug firms giving MPs ‘hidden’ funding, research shows Read More »

GSK drugmaker sets ambitious sales target before shake-up

Firm aims to boost pharmaceutical and vaccine business by 5% annually for five years GSK has cut its dividend and set ambitious sales targets as its under-pressure chief executive, Dame Emma Walmsley, pledged to lead Britain’s second-biggest drugmaker through a corporate shake-up next year. GSK is spinning off its consumer healthcare business and aims to …

GSK drugmaker sets ambitious sales target before shake-up Read More »

Vaccines were not part of AstraZeneca’s grand strategy, so what’s the plan now?

Having built a big operation during the pandemic it could stick or twist but either way investors will soon want a decision What’s AstraZeneca’s strategy in Covid treatments? In the short term, there is no confusion: the company will continue pumping out vaccine doses, will keep signing partnerships and will try to ignore churlishness in …

Vaccines were not part of AstraZeneca’s grand strategy, so what’s the plan now? Read More »

Hospitality firms urgently need clarity from Sunak about £2.5bn of unpaid rent

Giving landlords and tenants six months to work out a deal on arrears could stop an wave of bankruptcies in the sector If it really is a case of “one more heave” on vaccinations before restrictions on the hospitality sector can be eased, what’s the best way to ensure the country’s pubs, restaurants and nightclubs …

Hospitality firms urgently need clarity from Sunak about £2.5bn of unpaid rent Read More »

Drop Covid vaccine patent rules to save lives in world’s poorest countries, Britain and Germany told

G7 summit hears move would slash the cost of jabs and accelerate the rollout of programmes across the developing world Britain and Germany were last night under intense pressure to drop their resistance to proposals that would slash the cost of Covid-19 vaccines, following accusations that an agreement at the G7 summit to fund a …

Drop Covid vaccine patent rules to save lives in world’s poorest countries, Britain and Germany told Read More »

Fears of side-effects fuel reluctance to get Covid jabs, survey finds

Imperial College London survey in 15 countries also reveals worries that vaccines had not been tested enough Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Most people who are reluctant to be vaccinated against Covid are worried about side-effects and whether the vaccines have been adequately tested, a survey in 15 countries has shown. …

Fears of side-effects fuel reluctance to get Covid jabs, survey finds Read More »

MPs tell Johnson: you have a duty to help vaccinate the world

Exclusive: group urges prime minister to tackle ‘desperate shortage’ in developing nations Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boris Johnson has a “moral duty” to immediately start matching each vaccine administered at home with a donated dose to poorer countries across the world, a cross-party group of MPs and peers has said. …

MPs tell Johnson: you have a duty to help vaccinate the world Read More »

German scientists say they can help improve Covid vaccines to prevent blood clots

AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson jabs have caused rare blood clots but scientists say they can be redesigned to avoid problem Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A team of German scientists believe that they have worked out why some people given the AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson vaccines against Covid-19 develop …

German scientists say they can help improve Covid vaccines to prevent blood clots Read More »

UK pharmaceutical firm Ventura agrees to £958m takeover deal

Private equity firm Carlyle Group to buy company that is developing inhaled treatment for Covid-19 Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The British pharmaceutical company Vectura Group, which is developing a pioneering inhaled treatment for Covid-19, has agreed a £958m takeover by Carlyle Group as it looks set to become the latest …

UK pharmaceutical firm Ventura agrees to £958m takeover deal Read More »

AstraZeneca chief hits back at ‘armchair generals’ after criticism

Pascal Soriot defends firm and says its booster jab has performed well against new Covid variants in trials Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The chief executive of AstraZeneca has defended the company against “armchair generals” and said its vaccine has a future. Pascal Soriot disclosed the UK had priority access to …

AstraZeneca chief hits back at ‘armchair generals’ after criticism Read More »

GSK and Medicago report positive Covid vaccine trial data

Announcement follows encouraging news from collaboration with French drugmaker Sanofi Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage GlaxoSmithKline has unveiled positive interim results from mid-stage trials of a Covid-19 vaccine it is developing with the Canadian biotech firm Medicago, a day after releasing strong data from its vaccine collaboration with the French drugmaker …

GSK and Medicago report positive Covid vaccine trial data Read More »

GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi report strong results in trials of Covid vaccine

News will offer some some relief for GSK chief Emma Walmsley, who has been under pressure from investor GlaxoSmithKline is in the running to bring a new Covid-19 vaccine on to the market by the year end, thanks to positive results from early trials that will allow the formula to enter into late-stage studies within …

GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi report strong results in trials of Covid vaccine Read More »

Delay in giving second jabs of Pfizer vaccine improves immunity

Study finds antibodies against Sars-CoV-2 three-and-a-half times higher in people vaccinated again after 12 weeks rather than three Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK’s decision to delay second doses of coronavirus vaccines has received fresh support from research on the over-80s which found that giving the Pfizer/BioNTech booster after 12 …

Delay in giving second jabs of Pfizer vaccine improves immunity Read More »

Nearly 40% of AstraZeneca investors reject boss’s bonus rise

Covid vaccine maker passes its remuneration policy but suffers sizeable rebellion AstraZeneca investors narrowly approved pay package proposals for its chief executive, Pascal Soriot, after nearly 40%voted against the policy, which could hand him payand perks of up to £17.8m for 2021. At the company’s annual meeting in Cambridge, the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker managed to pass …

Nearly 40% of AstraZeneca investors reject boss’s bonus rise Read More »

The Guardian view on waiving Covid vaccine patents: protect the world, not big pharma | Editorial

The US is now backing plans that could help billions more access vaccines. The UK should follow suit The rapid emergence of Covid vaccines has been a remarkable yet bittersweet success, pointing to both humanity’s scientific achievements and its social and economic failures. Experts created them at extraordinary speed; yet as the pandemic rages, many …

The Guardian view on waiving Covid vaccine patents: protect the world, not big pharma | Editorial Read More »

Pfizer forecasts $26bn from annual sales of Covid-19 vaccine

Vaccine will generate 73% more than forecast based on contracts signed until mid-April Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage US drugmaker Pfizer expects to make $26bn (£19bn) in revenues from sales of its Covid-19 vaccine this year, with its soaraway product accounting for more than a third of the company’s annual income. …

Pfizer forecasts $26bn from annual sales of Covid-19 vaccine Read More »

AstraZeneca revenues up as it delivers jab to 120 countries via Covax

Quarterly results from Anglo-Swedish producer of Covid vaccine show better-than-expected 15% rise Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca has generated $275m (£197m) in revenues from its Covid vaccine in the first three months of the year and shipped 48m doses to 120 countries through the global vaccine-sharing initiative Covax. Most of …

AstraZeneca revenues up as it delivers jab to 120 countries via Covax Read More »

GSK’s Emma Walmsley vows to lead drugs firm through corporate split

CEO is under pressure to improve GSK’s performance after profit slump and arrival of activist shareholder GlaxoSmithKline’s chief executive, Emma Walmsley, has vowed to lead the company through next year’s corporate split and beyond, and to keep research spending high, as she came under mounting pressure to improve the drugmaker’s performance after a decline in …

GSK’s Emma Walmsley vows to lead drugs firm through corporate split Read More »

UK orders 60m more doses of Pfizer Covid vaccine for booster jabs

Health secretary says greater supplies of vaccine will help safeguard progress in tackling coronavirus Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK has ordered a further 60m doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccine in an effort to ensure that booster jabs can be given from this autumn, the government has announced. The …

UK orders 60m more doses of Pfizer Covid vaccine for booster jabs Read More »

What Covid vaccines does the UK have and which are in the works?

As Valneva recruits volunteers for final stage trials of its vaccine, here is the current state of play in Britain Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Vaccines to protect against the coronavirus were designed, tested and manufactured in record time, and several have been approved for use in the UK vaccination programme, …

What Covid vaccines does the UK have and which are in the works? Read More »

In the fight against Covid, have we been inoculated against compassion? | Letters

Dr Mohga Kamal-Yanni says world leaders must stop putting big pharma’s profits before people’s lives. Sue Hoar wonders why more is not being done to help Covid patients in India The shortfall in Covid vaccine doses going to the Covax vaccine-sharing scheme is deeply worrying, and highlights a massive flaw in the plans to provide …

In the fight against Covid, have we been inoculated against compassion? | Letters Read More »

GlaxoSmithKline shares jump at news of activist hedge fund interest

UK pharmaceutical company has been under pressure to rebuild portfolio of new medicines Shares in GlaxoSmithKline jumped on Thursday, after it emerged that the activist hedge fund Elliott Management has built a sizeable stake in the company, signalling a potential battle over the future of the UK drug maker. New York-based Elliott, which is run …

GlaxoSmithKline shares jump at news of activist hedge fund interest Read More »

Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine research ‘was 97% publicly funded’

Analysis rebuts claim by Boris Johnson that jab was developed ‘because of greed’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage At least 97% of the funding for the development of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine has been identified as coming from taxpayers or charitable trusts, according to the first attempt to reconstruct who paid …

Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine research ‘was 97% publicly funded’ Read More »

Will Covid vaccines protect us against new variants? | Julian Tang

New strains such as the South African variant that’s emerged in south London will require constant vigilance as lockdown eases All viruses mutate. They do this to adapt and survive better in their specific host. The virus that causes Covid-19 is no different: it has moved from the animal realm, where it most likely originated …

Will Covid vaccines protect us against new variants? | Julian Tang Read More »

UK strategy of backing several Covid vaccines seems to be paying off

Analysis: buying new and existing technologies ensured alternatives if a vaccine failed or had supply issues Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The government has said the decision by Johnson & Johnson to delay the supply of its Covid vaccine to Europe, while the US investigates reports of six cases of unusual …

UK strategy of backing several Covid vaccines seems to be paying off Read More »

Clarity and openness are key to vaccine confidence | Letters

Readers respond to the latest recommendations about the AstraZeneca Covid vaccine Your editorial calling for clarity on the AstraZeneca vaccine’s side-effects risks both being unclear and undermining confidence (The Guardian view on the AstraZeneca vaccine: confidence from clarity, 7 April). You imply that the rate of potentially serious cerebral venous sinus thrombosis is 0.0001%. The …

Clarity and openness are key to vaccine confidence | Letters Read More »

Coronavirus: UK expert urges people in 20s to keep getting vaccine

Prof David Spiegelhalter says advantages of vaccinating young people far outweigh risks Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage People in their 20s should continue to get vaccinated against Covid despite the very rare cases of blood clotting linked to the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine because of the wider benefit to their families, friends and …

Coronavirus: UK expert urges people in 20s to keep getting vaccine Read More »

UK ministers silent on AstraZeneca vaccine shipment to Australia

Downing Street will not confirm or deny report that more than 700,000 Covid jabs were sent after EU blocked export Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage British ministers and officials did not deny that more than 700,000 shots of the AstraZeneca vaccine were secretly dispatched from the UK to Australia a few …

UK ministers silent on AstraZeneca vaccine shipment to Australia Read More »

AstraZeneca jab worry may play into hands of anti-vaxxers, say Tories

Iain Duncan Smith, former leader, and another MP, warn of eroded confidence in vaccine plan after ‘messy’ MHRA advice Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A decision to offer people under 30 an alternative vaccine to the AstraZeneca jab has prompted concern that some could shun the injection over fears about its …

AstraZeneca jab worry may play into hands of anti-vaxxers, say Tories Read More »

AstraZeneca jab: UK government says concerns being investigated thoroughly

People urged to keep getting Covid vaccine, with EMA and MHRA expected to give updates on investigation into rare blood clots Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Government advisers say concerns over the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab are being taken “very seriously” and “very thoroughly” investigated, before an imminent announcement by the vaccines regulator. …

AstraZeneca jab: UK government says concerns being investigated thoroughly Read More »

AstraZeneca Covid vaccine: weighing up the risks and rewards

Despite scientific advice to continue getting the jab, answers about fatal blood clots are urgently needed Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Vaccines have side-effects, as do all medicines. Most often, jabs cause sore arms, a headache or a bit of nausea – none of which would be very significant when weighed …

AstraZeneca Covid vaccine: weighing up the risks and rewards Read More »

EU blames AstraZeneca ‘failure’ for sluggish Covid vaccine rollout

Anglo-Swedish company ‘solely’ to blame, says EU commissioner as bloc misses April vaccination target AstraZeneca has been squarely blamed by the EU for its comparatively slow Covid vaccine rollout after the bloc of 27 states failed to achieve its target to vaccinate 80% of older people by the end of March. Thierry Breton, the EU …

EU blames AstraZeneca ‘failure’ for sluggish Covid vaccine rollout Read More »

Medicines watchdog says no decision made AstraZeneca jab for under-30s

Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Authority was considering restricting vaccine amid concerns over rare blood clots Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK’s medicines regulatory body has said that no decision has been made on any regulatory action relating to the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine following reports it is considering restricting use of the …

Medicines watchdog says no decision made AstraZeneca jab for under-30s Read More »

Blood clot cases ‘could dent faith of young women in AstraZeneca’

Experts urge public to go for inoculations as benefits far outweigh potential complications Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Health officials are becoming increasingly worried that younger people will reject Covid jabs as concerns about the AstraZeneca vaccine continue to grow. A total of 30 cases of rare blood clots have been …

Blood clot cases ‘could dent faith of young women in AstraZeneca’ Read More »

UK to make up to 60m doses of Novavax Covid vaccine under GSK deal

Deal is intended to boost domestic supply amid fears potential export bans could hit vaccine shipments Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK will produce up to 60m doses of a Covid-19 vaccine under a new deal struck to boost domestic supply, amid fears over potential export bans hitting shipments of …

UK to make up to 60m doses of Novavax Covid vaccine under GSK deal Read More »

‘Vaccine prince’: the Indian billionaire set to make Covid jabs for the UK

Serum Institute boss Adar Poonawalla has rented a Mayfair mansion for £50,000 a week Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The AstraZeneca vaccine has made Prof Sarah Gilbert – who led the Oxford team that created it – one of the UK’s most famous modern scientists and turned the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company …

‘Vaccine prince’: the Indian billionaire set to make Covid jabs for the UK Read More »

GSK fires former US vaccine chief Moncef Slaoui over harassment allegation

Drugmaker dismisses former research boss from role at Galvani Bioelectronics GSK has dismissed its former research boss Moncef Slaoui, who became US national vaccine chief under Donald Trump, after an independent investigation found that he sexually harassed one of its female employees. GSK said it had terminated Slaoui’s role at Galvani Bioelectronics, a joint venture …

GSK fires former US vaccine chief Moncef Slaoui over harassment allegation Read More »

AstraZeneca dismisses claim 29m vaccine doses in Italy were bound for UK

Batches were found when Italian police searched factory at request of European commission Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca has dismissed as “inaccurate” a report in the Italian press that 29m doses of its Covid-19 vaccine found in factory near Rome were destined for the UK. La Stampa reported on Wednesday …

AstraZeneca dismisses claim 29m vaccine doses in Italy were bound for UK Read More »

EU to widen criteria for possible Covid vaccine export bans

Bloc expected to assess countries’ Covid vaccination coverage and record in facilitating exports to EU Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The EU is expected to take into account the level of vaccination coverage in a country and its record in facilitating exports to the bloc when deciding on whether to prohibit …

EU to widen criteria for possible Covid vaccine export bans Read More »

Boris Johnson: vaccine cooperation vital to help combat third Covid wave

PM stresses need to work with EU and says surge in infections is likely to ‘wash up on our shores’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boris Johnson has urged international cooperation over vaccines, saying a third wave of coronavirus elsewhere in Europe would inevitably affect the UK. The prime minister’s remarks …

Boris Johnson: vaccine cooperation vital to help combat third Covid wave Read More »

Patrick Vallance: the adviser who spoke scientific truth to power

The UK’s chief scientific adviser loves good food, enjoys a Scandi drama – and has been called ‘the richest civil servant in history’ Sir Patrick Vallance spent his 60th birthday at a podium in Downing Street, flanking Boris Johnson. Whatever plans he had were scrapped. Continue reading…

Patrick Vallance: the adviser who spoke scientific truth to power

The UK’s chief scientific adviser loves good food, enjoys a Scandi drama – and has been called ‘the richest civil servant in history’ Sir Patrick Vallance spent his 60th birthday at a podium in Downing Street, flanking Boris Johnson. Whatever plans he had were scrapped. Continue reading…

EU to send formal letter to AstraZeneca in Covid vaccine dispute

Bloc hopes to resolve row as it emerges big member states back threat to halt jab exports Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The EU is to send a formal letter to AstraZeneca in an attempt to resolve its dispute over vaccine supplies, a spokesperson has said, as it emerged that capitals …

EU to send formal letter to AstraZeneca in Covid vaccine dispute Read More »

EU to send formal letter to AstraZeneca in Covid vaccine dispute

Bloc hopes to resolve row as it emerges big member states back threat to halt jab exports Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The EU is to send a formal letter to AstraZeneca in an attempt to resolve its dispute over vaccine supplies, a spokesperson has said, as it emerged that capitals …

EU to send formal letter to AstraZeneca in Covid vaccine dispute Read More »

NHS to use world’s most expensive drug to treat spinal muscular atrophy

Zolgensma, which costs £1.79m for one-off treatment, will be available in England this year for the first time The world’s most expensive drug, which treats babies and young children with a rare and often fatal degenerative disorder, will be available this year for the first time on the NHS in England. Zolgensma, which costs £1.79m …

NHS to use world’s most expensive drug to treat spinal muscular atrophy Read More »

Thalidomide scandal: Sunak pledges lifetime support for survivors

Joy and relief from campaigners as chancellor’s budget extends support that had been due to run out in 2023 Analysis: Sunak digs in for battle against financial cost of Covid Budget 2021: key points at a glance Budget 2021 live: Sunak to freeze income tax thresholds Thalidomide campaigners have reacted with relief and joy after …

Thalidomide scandal: Sunak pledges lifetime support for survivors Read More »

Life-extending drug for incurable breast cancer approved for NHS use

About 3,300 women a year may benefit from decision to approve ribociclib Women with incurable advanced breast cancer will be able to get a drug from the NHS that can potentially extend their life by almost eight months, under new guidance. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has approved the drug – …

Life-extending drug for incurable breast cancer approved for NHS use Read More »

Blair says collaboration on Covid could have cut three months off crisis

Former prime minister tells the Guardian the world must be better prepared for the next pandemic World leaders could have cut the length of the Covid outbreak by three months if they had collaborated on vaccines, testing and drugs, Tony Blair has claimed as he launched a report on preparing for the next deadly pandemic. …

Blair says collaboration on Covid could have cut three months off crisis Read More »

Vaccine clinical trials for Covid variants to start in summer, MPs told

Updated versions of vaccine are being developed in case variants evade immunity provided by current shots Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Clinical trials of vaccines against new variants of coronavirus will start in the summer to ensure updated boosters are available for the autumn if needed, Oxford’s lead vaccine researcher has …

Vaccine clinical trials for Covid variants to start in summer, MPs told Read More »

Number of UK Covid vaccinations falls by a third as vaccine supply dips

Factors at play include high uptake plus stockpiling for second doses, but Matt Hancock promises ‘bumper weeks in March’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The number of Covid vaccines administered in the UK has fallen by over a third in the last week as ministers warned of a short-term dip in …

Number of UK Covid vaccinations falls by a third as vaccine supply dips Read More »

Sussex medicines firm takes production line abroad in white van to beat Brexit ban

UK assembly line at standstill as pharmaceutical company sets up in Amsterdam and plans EU expansion A Sussex pharmaceutical company has told how it had to bundle a production line into a white van and take it to Amsterdam to beat a Brexit medicines ban. The impromptu four-wheeled mission to the Netherlands has secured the …

Sussex medicines firm takes production line abroad in white van to beat Brexit ban Read More »

Drug companies look to AI to end ‘hit and miss’ research

Technology that speeded the development of Covid vaccines has potential to transform the pharmaceutical industry The hunt for new medicines has often been more like a game of roulette than high-end science. But now the pharmaceutical sector is on the cusp of a transformation, as it delves into cutting-edge technology to come up with new …

Drug companies look to AI to end ‘hit and miss’ research Read More »

Life savers: the amazing story of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine

A year ago, two scientists began work on the response to a new virus. Now, as their vaccine is being given to millions, they tell of their incredible 12 months Exactly a year ago, Oxford University scientists launched a joint enterprise that is set to have a profound impact on the health of our planet. …

Life savers: the amazing story of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine Read More »

‘It shows what we’re capable of’: the NHS’s vaccine triumph

A huge effort has helped the UK provide 14m first doses of Covid vaccines in about two months Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In St Albans, GPs took over a former nightclub to provide Covid vaccinations every 20 seconds; in Carnforth, Lancashire, delivering jabs was helped by volunteers from the local …

‘It shows what we’re capable of’: the NHS’s vaccine triumph Read More »

AstraZeneca says vaccine against new Covid variants may take six months

Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical firm’s profits rise to $7.4bn as main business ‘remains strong’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca has said it could take between six and nine months to produce Covid-19 vaccines that are effective against new variants of the coronavirus. The company’s vaccine, developed jointly with scientists at the University …

AstraZeneca says vaccine against new Covid variants may take six months Read More »

Oxford Covid vaccine 10% effective against South African variant, study suggests

Small-scale trial of vaccine’s efficacy shows it offers very little protection against mild to moderate infection Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine offers as little as 10% protection against the Covid variant first seen in South Africa, researchers have suggested. Scientists who conducted a small-scale trial of the vaccine’s …

Oxford Covid vaccine 10% effective against South African variant, study suggests Read More »

Oxford Covid vaccine just as effective against Kent variant, trials suggest

Scientists behind AstraZeneca vaccine say it has similar efficacy against variant as against original Covid Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Oxford/AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine is just as effective at fighting the UK variant as it is the original virus, new research suggests. Oxford University researchers who developed the vaccine say it …

Oxford Covid vaccine just as effective against Kent variant, trials suggest Read More »

UK orders 50m doses of Covid vaccines in fight against variants

Government to work with German firm CureVac on tackling potential mutations Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK government has signed a deal for at least 50m doses of vaccines that could combat new variants of coronavirus, and is to work with the German manufacturer to help develop them. The Department …

UK orders 50m doses of Covid vaccines in fight against variants Read More »

Cancer drugs binned because of Brexit red tape, MPs hear

Head of Welsh CBI tells committee pharmaceutical firm has had to move production to Dublin A Welsh pharmaceutical company has been forced to throw out hundreds of packs of vital cancer treatments for EU patients because of Brexit red tape on exports, MPs have heard. The company, which has not been named, has now moved …

Cancer drugs binned because of Brexit red tape, MPs hear Read More »

Bezos is handing over fronting Amazon, but not his grip on his creation | Nils Pratley

The Amazon founder gains time for other projects, such as space and newspapers, while still making the big decisions Jeff Bezos is stepping aside at Amazon – sort of. In fact, he is merely dropping one of his three job titles at thee online retailer. He will no longer be chief executive but will still …

Bezos is handing over fronting Amazon, but not his grip on his creation | Nils Pratley Read More »

GSK and CureVac sign £132m deal to develop multi-variant Covid vaccine

Companies hope to have next generation of vaccines against emerging variants by next year GlaxoSmithKline and Germany’s CureVac have reached a €150m (£132m) agreement to develop a next generation of Covid-19 vaccines targeting new emerging variants in the pandemic. The two companies said they they plan to work jointly to develop a vaccine that can …

GSK and CureVac sign £132m deal to develop multi-variant Covid vaccine Read More »

Single dose of AstraZeneca vaccine could cut transmission by 67%

One jab could also offer protection of up to 76% for up to 12 weeks, a new study shows Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A single dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine may reduce transmission by 67% and give protection of 76% for up to 12 weeks, a study shows. Vaccine efficacy …

Single dose of AstraZeneca vaccine could cut transmission by 67% Read More »

Even with vaccines, we still need treatments for Covid. So what works?

Analysis: death rates in intensive care are falling as doctors identify more ways to help those with the disease Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Vaccines may have been described as the great escape route from the Covid pandemic – but treatments, which are bringing down death rates, will be needed as …

Even with vaccines, we still need treatments for Covid. So what works? Read More »

EU Covid incompetence leaves governments wanting vaccines, not excuses | Larry Elliott

Centralised approach was meant to underline Europe’s solidarity but has had opposite effect The EU has made an almighty hash of procuring treatments for Covid-19. Vaccine centres are running short of supplies as a result. National governments want jabs rather than excuses for what has gone wrong. The search for scapegoats is on. Stripped of …

EU Covid incompetence leaves governments wanting vaccines, not excuses | Larry Elliott Read More »

How EU’s floundering vaccine effort hit a fresh crisis with exports row

A new rule on exports from Europe suddenly blew up into a threat to the withdrawal agreement – and a hasty backtrack Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage It started with a tweet by a blogger at 4.36pm on Friday. It ended with the prime ministers of the UK and Ireland warning …

How EU’s floundering vaccine effort hit a fresh crisis with exports row Read More »

EU to publish revised rules after Covid vaccine border fiasco

Commission plans to rush through regulations that ‘ensure Northern Ireland protocol remains unaffected’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Explainer: what is article 16 of the Northern Ireland protocol? Brussels will publish a revised regulation to potentially block vaccine exports out of the EU on Saturday, after an international outcry over its …

EU to publish revised rules after Covid vaccine border fiasco Read More »

UK vaccine strategy ‘paying off’ as latest trials boost stockpiles

Pre-ordering of Janssen and Novavax means Britain has procured 247m successfully trialled jabs Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Britain has cemented its status as one of the world’s leading buyers of effective Covid vaccines after two more pharmaceutical companies reported positive trial results – potentially growing the UK stockpile by 90m …

UK vaccine strategy ‘paying off’ as latest trials boost stockpiles Read More »

What can moral philosophy tell us about the Covid ‘vaccine nationalism’ row? | Alexis Papazoglou

The shortfall in supply has put the EU and the UK at loggerheads, but ethical principles could reveal a solution In normal times, a row between the EU, the UK and a private company over the timely delivery of a contract would be of interest to few apart from the two sides’ lawyers. But these …

What can moral philosophy tell us about the Covid ‘vaccine nationalism’ row? | Alexis Papazoglou Read More »

Teesside ‘buzzing’ that Novavax vaccine will be made there

Area that has suffered industrial decline proud to play key role in fight against coronavirus Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The legend “made on Teesside” has a long and proud history, with everything from the Sydney Harbour Bridge to the Quorn in vegan sausage rolls manufactured in this industrial part of …

Teesside ‘buzzing’ that Novavax vaccine will be made there Read More »

How effective is the Novavax Covid vaccine and will it work against variants?

Everything you need to know about the trial results for a new coronavirus vaccine Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In an interim analysis of a phase 3 clinical trial conducted in the UK, the vaccine has been shown to be nearly 89% effective, with 27% of participants in the trial – …

How effective is the Novavax Covid vaccine and will it work against variants? Read More »

How effective is the Novavax Covid vaccine and will it work against variants?

Everything you need to know about the trial results for a new coronavirus vaccine Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In an interim analysis of a phase 3 clinical trial conducted in the UK, the vaccine has been shown to be nearly 89% effective, with 27% of participants in the trial – …

How effective is the Novavax Covid vaccine and will it work against variants? Read More »

Novavax Covid vaccine shown to be nearly 90% effective in UK trial

UK vaccines taskforce has bought 60m doses after study found ‘spectacular results’ Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Another vaccine against Covid, trialled in the UK and bought by the government, has been shown to be nearly 90% effective and work against the UK and South African variants of the virus. The …

Novavax Covid vaccine shown to be nearly 90% effective in UK trial Read More »

EU could block millions of Covid vaccine doses from entering UK

European commission says new mechanism will give national regulators power to refuse exports Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Millions of doses of vaccines could be blocked from entering Britain from the EU within days, as part of Brussels’ response to a shortage of doses among its member states. The European commission …

EU could block millions of Covid vaccine doses from entering UK Read More »

EU health commissioner dismisses AstraZeneca contract argument – video

Brussels has refused to accept that people in the UK have first claim on Oxford/AstraZeneca doses produced in local plants. The EU’s health commissioner outright dismissed on Wednesday an argument made by Pascal Soriot, the Anglo-Swedish company’s chief executive, that he was contractually obliged to supply the UK first Britain and EU clash over claims …

EU health commissioner dismisses AstraZeneca contract argument – video Read More »

GameStop’s dizzying share price rise means it’s game over for the short-sellers | Nils Pratley

The retailer has gone from $19 to $33o thanks in part to amateurs taking on the hedge funds If you find trading bitcoin insufficiently hair-raising, try GameStop. It is the Texas-based video games retailer that will be hard to out-do as the stock market story of 2021. The share price was $19 at the start …

GameStop’s dizzying share price rise means it’s game over for the short-sellers | Nils Pratley Read More »

The EU’s vaccine bust-up with AstraZeneca is of its own making | Leo Cendrowicz

Slowness to sign up to and approve the vaccine may have caused delays, but Brussels feels the company is being less than cooperative Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Last year AstraZeneca was heralded for its pioneering vaccine discovery. Yet today the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company is embroiled in a dispute with the …

The EU’s vaccine bust-up with AstraZeneca is of its own making | Leo Cendrowicz Read More »

Head of AstraZeneca rejects calls for UK vaccine to be diverted to EU

Chief executive of pharmaceutical giant says the firm will honour UK’s earlier contract despite EU anger over shortfall Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca’s chief executive has insisted the UK will come first for vaccines as he rejected calls to divert doses to the European Union following a breakdown in supply. …

Head of AstraZeneca rejects calls for UK vaccine to be diverted to EU Read More »

EU means business over Covid vaccine exports, says Von der Leyen

Commission president says firms must deliver on orders after AstraZeneca warns of shortfall Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The EU “means business”, Ursula von der Leyen has said, as the bloc doubled down on plans for tighter monitoring of vaccine exports to countries outside of the union, such as the UK. …

EU means business over Covid vaccine exports, says Von der Leyen Read More »

Pharmaceutical giants not ready for next pandemic, report warns

Ten of the world’s most infectious diseases identified by the WHO not being catered for by drug firms The world’s biggest pharmaceutical firms are little prepared for the next pandemic despite a mounting response to the Covid-19 outbreak, an independent report has warned. Jayasree K Iyer, executive director of the Netherlands-based Access to Medicine Foundation, …

Pharmaceutical giants not ready for next pandemic, report warns Read More »

German government challenges AstraZeneca Covid vaccine efficacy reports

Newspaper had reported that government was expecting European regulator’s assessment to show that vaccine was only 8% effective among over-65 The German government has challenged reports of a lower-than-expected efficacy rate of the AstraZeneca vaccine for older people, while reiterating concerns about the British-Swedish pharmaceutical giant’s data reporting. An article in German business daily Handelsblatt …

German government challenges AstraZeneca Covid vaccine efficacy reports Read More »

Vaccine experts call for clarity on UK’s 12-week Covid jab interval

British Society for Immunology calls for a robust programme monitoring the body’s immune response Experts have called for greater clarity on the monitoring in place to assess the 12-week dosing interval for Covid-19 vaccines, as the row over delayed second doses continues. The UK’s coronavirus vaccination programme was shifted late last year to prioritise administering …

Vaccine experts call for clarity on UK’s 12-week Covid jab interval Read More »

Vaccine experts call for clarity on UK’s 12-week Covid jab interval

British Society for Immunology calls for a robust programme monitoring the body’s immune response Experts have called for greater clarity on the monitoring in place to assess the 12-week dosing interval for Covid-19 vaccines, as the row over delayed second doses continues. The UK’s coronavirus vaccination programme was shifted late last year to prioritise administering …

Vaccine experts call for clarity on UK’s 12-week Covid jab interval Read More »

I’ve had my first vaccine jab. It gives me hope of liberation… but not yet

Exactly a year after his first story about coronavirus, our science editor received the Pfizer injection last week. Here he reflects on a remarkable scientific achievement Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage I marked a grim anniversary in an unexpected manner last week. On 18 January last year, I wrote my first …

I’ve had my first vaccine jab. It gives me hope of liberation… but not yet Read More »

Vaccine experts defend UK decision to delay second Pfizer Covid jab

Medics told they risk undermining public confidence by querying policy of three-month gap between doses Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Leading vaccine experts have backed the government’s decision to delay the second dose for up to three months, after doctors warned that the strategy was proving “ever-more difficult to justify”. The …

Vaccine experts defend UK decision to delay second Pfizer Covid jab Read More »

MHRA and vaccine makers in talks over new Covid variants

Scientists start work on steps needed for potential rapid development of a modified vaccine, AstraZeneca says Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK medicines regulator is in discussions with coronavirus vaccine manufacturers about “potential modifications” that may be needed to ensure their jabs protect against new variants of the virus. The …

MHRA and vaccine makers in talks over new Covid variants Read More »

EU’s Covid vaccination debacle is down to institutional inflexibility

Supply delays underline there was no legal or economic justification for central planning A storm is raging over the EU’s failure to have ordered more of the approved Covid-19 vaccines ahead of time. Stéphane Bancel, the CEO of the US pharmaceutical company Moderna, which gained approval for its vaccine shortly after Pfizer/BioNTech, claims that the …

EU’s Covid vaccination debacle is down to institutional inflexibility Read More »

UK to face short term delay in delivery of Pfizer vaccine

Overall number of doses delivered between January and March will remain the same, the firm says Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK is set to face short-term delays in delivery of the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine as the pharmaceutical company upgrades its production capacity. Pfizer is upscaling production at its plant …

UK to face short term delay in delivery of Pfizer vaccine Read More »

Second shots of Covid vaccine could be delayed further in England

Evidence growing that spacing doses of Pfizer vaccine improves effectiveness Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Second shots of coronavirus vaccine could be delayed even further amid growing evidence that spacing out the doses improves their effectiveness. The NHS vaccination programme aims to immunise about 14 million people at greatest risk of …

Second shots of Covid vaccine could be delayed further in England Read More »

Moderna Covid vaccine approved for use by UK medicines regulator

Britain’s third jab to receive clearance for public use will not be available until the spring Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Moderna coronavirus vaccine has been approved for use in the UK. The jab is the third to be given the green light by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory …

Moderna Covid vaccine approved for use by UK medicines regulator Read More »

Third Covid vaccine set for UK approval next week but arrival delayed by Brexit

Moderna jab won’t be available in Britain until April but fourth vaccine may soon come online Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage A third Covid vaccine is likely to be approved for use in Britain next week but it will not be available until April because the UK is no longer part …

Third Covid vaccine set for UK approval next week but arrival delayed by Brexit Read More »

Britain could be mass-producing its Covid shot. Shame we junked our industrial base | Aditya Chakrabortty

The dire state of UK manufacturing has left us dependent on other nations. We may soon find out why some call this a ‘national security risk’ Everything now hinges on a vaccine: how many more Britons die, whether the NHS finally breaks, how long the UK stays locked down. All depends on how fast the …

Britain could be mass-producing its Covid shot. Shame we junked our industrial base | Aditya Chakrabortty Read More »

UK vaccine minister vows ‘massive uplift’ in number of jabs this week

Nadhim Zahawi says ‘absolute focus’ is to get 13.9 million people inoculated by mid-February Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK vaccine minister, Nadhim Zahawi, has pledged a “massive uplift” in the number of coronavirus vaccinations carried out this week as he said reaching the government’s target of 13.9m jabs offered …

UK vaccine minister vows ‘massive uplift’ in number of jabs this week Read More »

No data to support UK delay of vaccines’ second dose, says WHO

Move to postpone second jab by up to 12 weeks is not supported by scientific evidence, experts find Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage There is no scientific evidence for a delay of more than six weeks in administering the second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine against Covid, say experts from the …

No data to support UK delay of vaccines’ second dose, says WHO Read More »

Analysis: is it wise for England to mix and match Covid vaccines?

US experts warn against plan to give different second jab if supplies run low Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK is setting the pace around the world in the approval and use of Covid vaccines but, while other countries watch intently, not all are yet prepared to embrace what looks …

Analysis: is it wise for England to mix and match Covid vaccines? Read More »

How is the Oxford Covid vaccine being deployed in England?

With jab to be administered to public for first time, we look at key questions about its rollout Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The biggest vaccination programme in the UK’s history will receive a major boost on Monday, with the first use of the Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid vaccine. We answer some key …

How is the Oxford Covid vaccine being deployed in England? Read More »

The Oxford Covid jab is delivered this week. But when will vaccines bring results?

Fall or rise in coronavirus cases will not initially be a good measure of efficacy, say scientists devising ways to audit progress Why is Britain delaying second doses of vaccine? Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage People in Britain are set to get their first shots of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine on Monday, …

The Oxford Covid jab is delivered this week. But when will vaccines bring results? Read More »

What difference will Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine make in UK?

We look at how the introduction of a new vaccine in the fight against Covid will work Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is central to the government’s plans for ending social distancing in the UK and returning to some sort of normality. It has invested in seven different …

What difference will Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine make in UK? Read More »

Sector by sector: are British firms ready for post-Brexit trade?

Analysis: From retail to aviation to pharmaceuticals, we look at what will change from 1 January After months of tortuous negotiations between the UK and the EU, a Brexit trade deal was agreed at almost the last minute. But how prepared are UK businesses for the significant changes that will come into force on 1 …

Sector by sector: are British firms ready for post-Brexit trade? Read More »

Questions hang over UK’s rollout of Oxford/AstraZeneca jab

Analysis: regulator surprises by approving 12-week gap between first and second shots of vaccine as well as Pfizer/BioNTech shot Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage It’s a pragmatic solution to an incredibly urgent problem – how to immunise very large numbers of people at risk from a rampaging variant of Covid-19 in …

Questions hang over UK’s rollout of Oxford/AstraZeneca jab Read More »

‘Happy vaccine day’ at Welsh factory proudly preparing Oxford doses

Staff at Wockhardt in Wrexham buzzing at news of approval after working over Christmas Most of the sprawling industrial estate on the edge of Wrexham was quiet. There was little sign of activity at the engineering firms or in the self-storage units or greasy spoon cafes. But behind the wire fence of the Wockhardt UK …

‘Happy vaccine day’ at Welsh factory proudly preparing Oxford doses Read More »

‘I’ve never seen anything like it’: 2020 smashes records in global markets

From worst crash in a generation to record highs on news of a Covid vaccine, experts review the rollercoaster that was 2020 Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage 2020 has been the most remarkable year for the global financial markets. After the Covid-19 pandemic triggered the worst crash in a generation, unprecedented …

‘I’ve never seen anything like it’: 2020 smashes records in global markets Read More »

NHS doctors ‘scrabbling’ to get vaccine amid alarm at Covid variant

Many medics ‘frustrated’ about low priority given to frontline staff at high risk of infection Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Frontline NHS staff have been denied the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, leaving doctors alarmed and “scrabbling” to get immunised. A new survey reveals that almost two-thirds of medics who responded to it have …

NHS doctors ‘scrabbling’ to get vaccine amid alarm at Covid variant Read More »

UK scientists trial drug to prevent coronavirus infection leading to disease

Exclusive: antibody therapy could confer instant immunity against Covid-19 to at-risk groups See all our coronavirus coverage British scientists are trialling a new drug that could prevent someone who has been exposed to coronavirus from going on to develop the disease Covid-19, which experts say could save many lives. The antibody therapy would confer instant …

UK scientists trial drug to prevent coronavirus infection leading to disease Read More »

Covid vaccine ‘highly likely’ to work on UK variant, BioNTech says

Chief executive, Uğur Şahin, says team will know within two weeks if vaccine works or needs adaption Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The chief executive of the German pharmaceutical company BioNTech has said he is confident its coronavirus vaccine works against the new UK variant, but that further studies are need …

Covid vaccine ‘highly likely’ to work on UK variant, BioNTech says Read More »

Tensions mount over handling of UK Covid vaccine rollout

With overall costs for vaccinating the UK population at £12bn, the public accounts committee flags ‘highly unusual’ arrangements Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Vaccinating the population against Covid-19 will cost up to £12bn, Whitehall’s spending watchdog has disclosed, amid details of tensions between health bodies over the rollout. The National Audit …

Tensions mount over handling of UK Covid vaccine rollout Read More »

Ministers would be wise to play for time before ordering Sizewell C | Nils Pratley

Dashing ahead with a nuclear power station that’s modelled on Hinkley Point C would be reckless This is the government’s problem as it reopens talks on a proposed nuclear power station at Sizewell C in Suffolk: it is contemplating ordering a replica of Hinkley Point C before the Somerset original has produced a single megawatt …

Ministers would be wise to play for time before ordering Sizewell C | Nils Pratley Read More »

AstraZeneca shares slump after it agrees $39bn Alexion buyout

Britain’s biggest drugmaker offers 45% premium for shares of US rare diseases specialist AstraZeneca shares fell sharply after it agreed to a $39bn (£29bn) takeover of the US rare diseases specialist Alexion, the biggest deal in its history if it goes ahead. Investors sold off shares in the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker over fears it was paying …

AstraZeneca shares slump after it agrees $39bn Alexion buyout Read More »

Deal or no deal: how life will look for key industries after Brexit

Companies are praying a trade agreement can be struck, but must prepare for talks to fail. Which will be most affected? The scene is set for a showdown, and the future of the UK economy is at stake. Will Britain secure a free trade deal with the EU? Or will the prime minister choose to …

Deal or no deal: how life will look for key industries after Brexit Read More »

Can the UK deliver on the Covid vaccine rollout? | Stephen Buranyi

The challenge of delivering vaccines on this scale are hard, but are firmly within the world of logistics, engineering, and politics Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK has become the first country to approve one of the coronavirus vaccines that the entire world has been desperately waiting for. And on …

Can the UK deliver on the Covid vaccine rollout? | Stephen Buranyi Read More »

Covid vaccines: US regulator sceptical over AstraZeneca model

Vaccine developed in Oxford criticised by FDA with efficacy rates and trials delaying official take-up Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage For a man presenting landmark results from trials of a vaccine that it is hoped will save the world from a devastating pandemic, Sir Menelas Pangalos did not look cheerful on …

Covid vaccines: US regulator sceptical over AstraZeneca model Read More »

NHS told not to give Pfizer vaccine to extreme allergy sufferers after two people have reaction

Anyone scheduled to receive vaccine will be asked about history of allergic reactions Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Regulators have issued a warning that people who have a history of “significant” allergic reactions should not currently receive the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine after two people who had the jab on Tuesday had …

NHS told not to give Pfizer vaccine to extreme allergy sufferers after two people have reaction Read More »

Covid vaccine arrives in UK hospitals ready for first jabs

Medical director warns of great hurdles in largest vaccination campaign in UK history Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Batches of the Covid vaccine have begun to arrive in hospitals around the UK, ready for the first jabs on Tuesday in what NHS England’s medical director warned would be the largest and …

Covid vaccine arrives in UK hospitals ready for first jabs Read More »

Covid-19 vaccine ‘very safe and highly effective’, UK health chief says

Vaccine safety message ‘vitally important’, head of medicines regulator tells Andrew Marr Show Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Public health messaging that people can have faith in the safety of coronavirus vaccines is “vitally important”, the leader of the body that has approved the Pfizer jab has said. Dr June Raine, …

Covid-19 vaccine ‘very safe and highly effective’, UK health chief says Read More »

The vaccine miracle: how scientists waged the battle against Covid-19

We trace the extraordinary research effort, from the discovery of the virus’s structure to the start of inoculations this week Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In the early afternoon of 3 January this year, a small metal box was delivered to the Shanghai Public Health Clinical Centre addressed to virus expert …

The vaccine miracle: how scientists waged the battle against Covid-19 Read More »

Oxford controversy is the first shot in international battle over vaccine efficiency

Trials will not reveal all the facts on prevention for each new drug – that process could last for years Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In a few days, researchers plan to solve a medical mystery that threatens to erupt into a major transatlantic battle. Scientists at Oxford University say they …

Oxford controversy is the first shot in international battle over vaccine efficiency Read More »

Will everyone in the world have access to a Covid vaccine? – video explainer

The hunt for a coronavirus vaccine is showing promise but it is premature to say the end of the pandemic is nigh. Several rich countries have signed a ‘frenzy of deals’ that could prevent many poor nations from getting access to immunisation until at least 2024. Also, many drug firms are potentially refusing to waive patents and other intellectual property rights …

Will everyone in the world have access to a Covid vaccine? – video explainer Read More »

Here’s how to tackle the Covid-19 anti-vaxxers | Will Hanmer-Lloyd

Do not demonise. To optimise the vaccine rollout, all of us must show respect to those who are unsure about inoculations Will Hanmer-Lloyd is a behavioural strategist The Covid-19 vaccines, which are up to 95% effective, have the potential to save millions of lives in the UK and many more around the world. Yet creating …

Here’s how to tackle the Covid-19 anti-vaxxers | Will Hanmer-Lloyd Read More »

Vaccine results bring us a step closer to ending Covid, says Oxford scientist

Latest breakthrough comes as PM says he hopes most at-risk could be immunised by Easter Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The world is moving a step closer to ending the coronavirus pandemic, the scientist behind Britain’s first vaccine has declared, as Boris Johnson said he hoped the majority of those most …

Vaccine results bring us a step closer to ending Covid, says Oxford scientist Read More »

Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine ‘likely first to be widely used in UK’

Experts say Pfizer/BioNTech product faces more logistical challenges and obstacles Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Oxford vaccine is likely to be the first Covid jab that large numbers of Britons receive, despite Pfizer’s candidate already being analysed by the medicines regulators, experts say. The fact that the Oxford vaccine can …

Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine ‘likely first to be widely used in UK’ Read More »

‘It’s a great day’: Oxford coronavirus vaccine volunteers on trial data

Trial participants react to news that Oxford AstraZeneca Covid vaccine has up to 90% efficacy Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Dan McAteer describes his reaction more as a sense of relief than elation when his phone pinged on Monday morning with a push alert reporting that the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine has …

‘It’s a great day’: Oxford coronavirus vaccine volunteers on trial data Read More »

The Guardian view on coronavirus and vaccine scepticism: time to act | Editorial

Plans for mass immunisation against Covid-19 are developing fast, but concerns must be addressed In the 1960s, academics studying rumours drew inspiration from epidemiology. They noted how such stories spread through communities, “infecting” some individuals while others seemed immune, and how more resistant populations could stop their spread. Their insights have in turn been taken …

The Guardian view on coronavirus and vaccine scepticism: time to act | Editorial Read More »

Trials to begin in UK for Covid antibody cocktail drug treatment

Scientists say jab could be used to protect those who cannot be given vaccines Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Major trials will begin this weekend of an antibody cocktail that scientists hope will protect people against Covid-19 and could be swiftly used in care homes or on cruise ships in the …

Trials to begin in UK for Covid antibody cocktail drug treatment Read More »

UK faces calls to drop opposition to patent-free Covid vaccines

Request will be made at WTO meeting in order to allow mass production of treatments Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK will be asked to reconsider its opposition to waiving intellectual property rights for Covid-19 vaccines and treatments at a World Trade Organization meeting on Friday, a move that would …

UK faces calls to drop opposition to patent-free Covid vaccines Read More »

Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine has 95% efficacy and is safe, further analysis shows

Among first 170 Covid cases in trial, eight had received vaccine and 162 were in placebo group Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19 performs even better than previously thought, with 95% efficacy, equalling the early results from Moderna on Monday, according to an analysis of the final …

Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine has 95% efficacy and is safe, further analysis shows Read More »

Warren Buffett makes big investment in US pharmaceutical firms

Berkshire Hathaway bought $5.7bn worth of shares in four companies in third quarter The investment company run by billionaire investor Warren Buffett bet $5.7bn (£4.3bn) on pharmaceutical companies during the third quarter of 2020, as the sector takes centre stage in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Berkshire Hathaway bought shares in drug companies AbbVie, …

Warren Buffett makes big investment in US pharmaceutical firms Read More »

Moderna vaccine’s effectiveness bodes well for Oxford/AstraZeneca jab

Phase 3 success rate of 95% for US firm’s treatment is promising for UK vaccine trial Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Hopes are rising for the Covid jab being developed by Oxford University, after Moderna became the second company to reveal impressive results from its vaccine trials. Interim results from phase …

Moderna vaccine’s effectiveness bodes well for Oxford/AstraZeneca jab Read More »

UK in ‘advanced discussions’ to buy Moderna Covid vaccine

Britain decided not to buy US vaccine and earliest it could be supplied to UK is spring 2021 Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK has not acquired the Moderna vaccine but is in “advanced discussions” to ensure British access, officials have said, while cautioning that no one in the UK …

UK in ‘advanced discussions’ to buy Moderna Covid vaccine Read More »

It’s the ‘vaccine hesitant’, not anti-vaxxers, who are troubling public health experts | Gaby Hinsliff

To make vaccination work, we must reach out to the naturally cautious – a bigger proportion than you might assume Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Lydia Guthrie is not very daring by nature. A psychotherapist and mother of two from Oxford, she couldn’t be persuaded into bungee jumping for all the …

It’s the ‘vaccine hesitant’, not anti-vaxxers, who are troubling public health experts | Gaby Hinsliff Read More »

BioNTech vaccine scientist says jab could halve Covid transmission

Uğur Şahin ‘very confident’ vaccine candidate developed with Pfizer will cause big reduction in cases Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The scientist behind the first potential Covid-19 vaccine to clear interim clinical trials says he is “very confident” the jab will reduce transmission of the disease, perhaps by 50%, resulting in …

BioNTech vaccine scientist says jab could halve Covid transmission Read More »

Vaccination hesitancy is about lack of trust. Compulsion is not the answer | Kenan Malik

Better to build social solidarity than to dismiss reluctance to be immunised as ignorance Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage “If a strain as deadly as the 1918 influenza emerges and people’s hesitancy to get vaccinated remains at the level it is today, a debilitating and fatal disease will spread.” So wrote …

Vaccination hesitancy is about lack of trust. Compulsion is not the answer | Kenan Malik Read More »

The Covid vaccine will benefit humanity – we should all own the patent | Owen Jones

The pharmaceutical industry has long made exorbitant profits by free-riding on research carried out by the public sector Hooray for Pfizer! As news of a vaccine potentially offering 90% protection against Covid-19 offers a life raft for lockdown-weary humanity, perhaps those home-drawn posters on people’s windows thanking the NHS will soon be applauding big pharma …

The Covid vaccine will benefit humanity – we should all own the patent | Owen Jones Read More »

Why a Covid vaccine doesn’t mean the end of face masks yet | David Salisbury

Despite the Pfizer breakthrough, social distancing and remote working won’t disappear overnight Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The news this week that the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine protected more than 90% of recipients is of huge importance. The vaccine efficacy is higher than we had hoped for. There appear to be no safety …

Why a Covid vaccine doesn’t mean the end of face masks yet | David Salisbury Read More »

Where will poorer countries stand in the queue for a Covid-19 vaccine? | Clare Wenham and Mark Eccleston-Turner

The lion’s share of the potential Pfizer vaccine is already claimed by high-income nations The news that joint efforts by the US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and the German biotech company BioNtech have produced a vaccine that is 90% effective at protecting people from Covid-19 has been understandably applauded – in spite of the caveats. Pfizer …

Where will poorer countries stand in the queue for a Covid-19 vaccine? | Clare Wenham and Mark Eccleston-Turner Read More »

UK security bill signals open door era for foreign takeovers is over

China’s ambition to build a nuclear plant in Essex will likely fail on national security grounds The new national security and investment bill, aiming to give the government sweeping powers to block foreign takeovers and investments, will inevitably be viewed through the lens of China and new nuclear power plants in UK. That is, indeed, …

UK security bill signals open door era for foreign takeovers is over Read More »

FTSE 100 recovers to highest level since June after vaccine unveiled

Promising clinical data from Pfizer and BioNTech help the index to a £28bn one-day gain Optimism that a mass rollout of Covid-19 vaccines will lead to an economic recovery lifted stocks in London again on Tuesday, to their highest closing level in over four months. London’s FTSE 100 index of blue-chip shares rallied by nearly …

FTSE 100 recovers to highest level since June after vaccine unveiled Read More »

Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine poses global logistics challenge

Europe and US create vast facilities for Covid-19 vaccine but poorer nations lack infrastructure say experts Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Two vast football-pitch-sized facilities equipped with hundreds of large freezers in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and Puurs, Belgium, will be the centres of the huge effort to ship the coronavirus vaccine developed …

Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine poses global logistics challenge Read More »

Will enough people in the UK take the Covid-19 jab?

The UK usually has a high take-up for vaccines, experts say, but there are fears over misinformation and scepticism Coronavirus: anti-vaxxers seek to discredit Pfizer’s vaccine Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The spread of scepticism and misinformation about coronavirus and the development of a vaccine for it has raised questions about …

Will enough people in the UK take the Covid-19 jab? Read More »

6 key questions about the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine

There are grounds for optimism but also several unknowns around this coronavirus vaccine Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Hopes that the end of the coronavirus pandemic has become nearer have soared after the news that a coronavirus vaccine was found to be 90% effective in global trials. Although there is definite …

6 key questions about the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine Read More »

Despite the fine print, we can still feel optimistic about a Covid vaccine | Charlotte Summers

Pfizer’s preliminary results are a huge development, although hurdles still lie ahead Dr Charlotte Summers is a lecturer in intensive care medicine at the University of Cambridge Coronavirus – latest updates We could all do with some good news right now. After a long and difficult year of multiple lockdowns and numerous sacrifices, the announcement …

Despite the fine print, we can still feel optimistic about a Covid vaccine | Charlotte Summers Read More »

Global markets: winners and losers as Covid vaccine hopes send shares surging

But the news highlighted divergences in fortunes across sectors during the pandemic Global stock markets surge after Pfizer Covid vaccine news Nils Pratley: ‘A great day for humanity’ – and not bad for markets The FTSE 100 posted its biggest one-day gain since March on Monday after the drug companies Pfizer and BioNTech said their …

Global markets: winners and losers as Covid vaccine hopes send shares surging Read More »

Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine announcement is cause for cautious celebration

Interim trial results are encouraging as scientists welcome news Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage It is not yet the end of the pandemic, but the announcement by Pfizer/BioNTech that their vaccine has been 90% successful in the vital large-scale trials has got even the soberest of scientists excited. These are interim …

Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine announcement is cause for cautious celebration Read More »

Global stock markets surge after Pfizer Covid vaccine news

FTSE 100 jumps as Pfizer and BioNTech report coronavirus vaccine is 90% effective Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Global stocks have surged after the drug companies Pfizer and BioNTech announced that their coronavirus vaccine was 90% effective in tests, giving hope that economies around the world can soon return to normal. …

Global stock markets surge after Pfizer Covid vaccine news Read More »

Oxford Covid vaccine works in all ages, trials suggest

Vaccine being trialled by Oxford University and AstraZeneca offers hope for all age groups Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage One of the world’s leading Covid-19 experimental vaccines produces an immune response in both older and young adults, raising hopes of a path out of the gloom and economic destruction wrought by …

Oxford Covid vaccine works in all ages, trials suggest Read More »

Boots to offer 12-minute Covid testing service within weeks

Pharmacy chain says £120 cost will be one of cheapest private tests available Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boots is to offer a coronavirus testing service it says can return results from swab tests in only 12 minutes. The pharmacy chain said the LumiraDx devices, which are able to quickly process …

Boots to offer 12-minute Covid testing service within weeks Read More »

Boots accused of harming social distancing by roping off HQ toilets

Employees at Nottingham head office say they were barred from toilets newly reserved for executives Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boots roped off office toilets for executives during the pandemic, making it harder for ordinary employees to practise social distancing, the Guardian has learned. The pharmacy firm was criticised last week …

Boots accused of harming social distancing by roping off HQ toilets Read More »

Are we near to having a vaccine for Covid-19?

Even a once bullish PM is now not so optimistic but there are promising signs of a vaccine on the horizon Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage In March, Boris Johnson said we would turn the tide in 12 weeks and “send the coronavirus packing” and by May ministers were boasting of …

Are we near to having a vaccine for Covid-19? Read More »

Boots bosses ‘encouraged’ staff to work at head office despite UK government advice

Emails show senior managers ‘expecting’ attendance at Nottingham HQ despite big spike in local cases Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Boots told staff they were “encouraged” to come in to its headquarters in Nottingham, where Covid-19 infection rates are the highest in England, even after the government advised people to work …

Boots bosses ‘encouraged’ staff to work at head office despite UK government advice Read More »

Boots chain reports 30% sales drop at retail sites in UK

Profit margin fall, blamed on Covid-19 effects, drags global firm to $3m quarterly loss Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Sales at Boots slumped nearly 30% in the three months to the end of August as shoppers stayed away from town centres and picked up health goods at supermarkets instead. Over the …

Boots chain reports 30% sales drop at retail sites in UK Read More »

NHS coronavirus tests threatened by Roche supply chain glitch

Pharmaceutical firm reports ‘significant drop in processing capacity’ of reagents, kits and swabs Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Concerns have been raised over the supply of vital testing materials for a range of conditions, including Covid-19, following a supply chain problem with the pharmaceutical company Roche. On Tuesday, Roche said it …

NHS coronavirus tests threatened by Roche supply chain glitch Read More »

GSK tells UK staff: turn off Covid test-and-trace app while at work

Drugs company says infection controls at some of its sites are so secure the app is not needed Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The pharmaceuticals firm GlaxoSmithKline has told staff to switch off the contact tracing function that allows the NHS test-and-trace app to monitor the spread of Covid-19 while at …

GSK tells UK staff: turn off Covid test-and-trace app while at work Read More »

Anti-Covid treatments being given to Trump are still unproven, say experts

Neither remdesivir nor REGN-COV2 have completed large-scale randomised trials, say UK scientists Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Scientists still lack conclusive proof that the two anti-Covid drugs given to Donald Trump are clinically effective. UK researchers point out that both medicines – remdesivir and REGN-COV2 – have still to complete the …

Anti-Covid treatments being given to Trump are still unproven, say experts Read More »

UK doing more than most to help poor get Covid vaccine, study finds

Campaign scoring countries for global access efforts calls for more British transparency Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK is doing more than most countries to support access to Covid vaccines for the poorest populations in the world, but it is not transparent enough about the deals it is doing at …

UK doing more than most to help poor get Covid vaccine, study finds Read More »

Pharmacies in England pause online flu jab bookings as demand soars

Boots, LloydsPharmacy and Well Pharmacy report unprecedented take-up and many chemists run out of stock Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Pharmacies across England are struggling to keep up with the demand for the flu vaccine, pausing online bookings and limiting it to those most in need. The country’s three largest pharmacy …

Pharmacies in England pause online flu jab bookings as demand soars Read More »

Oxford University resumes Covid-19 vaccine trials

Trials of vaccine being developed with AstraZeneca had been paused after participant fell ill Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The closely watched trial of an experimental Covid-19 vaccine that was halted after a participant fell ill is to resume in the UK. The University of Oxford, which has partnered with pharmaceutical …

Oxford University resumes Covid-19 vaccine trials Read More »

Show more empathy to boost confidence in vaccines, scientists told

Expert behind vaccine confidence report points to halting of Oxford Covid trial as example Doctors and scientists need to show more empathy towards volunteers in coronavirus vaccine trials who fall ill if the public is to have full confidence in the safety of the vaccines being developed, say experts. The temporary halting of the Oxford …

Show more empathy to boost confidence in vaccines, scientists told Read More »

Oxford Covid-19 vaccine is still possible this year, says AstraZeneca chief

Pharmaceutical firm’s boss says 2020 deadline possible if regulators move fast Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine could still be available by the end of the year, or early next year, according to the company’s chief executive, Pascal Soriot, despite clinical trials being paused after a volunteer fell ill. …

Oxford Covid-19 vaccine is still possible this year, says AstraZeneca chief Read More »

Oxford University Covid vaccine trial put on hold due to possible adverse reaction in participant

A spokesman for AstraZeneca, the company working on the coronavirus vaccine, said pausing trials was common during vaccine development The development of a promising Covid-19 vaccine has been put on hold due to a possible adverse reaction in a trial participant. A spokesman for AstraZeneca, the company working with a team from Oxford University, told …

Oxford University Covid vaccine trial put on hold due to possible adverse reaction in participant Read More »

GSK and Sanofi to start human trials of potential Covid-19 vaccine

World’s largest vaccine makers to begin testing on people in US with eye on rollout in early 2021 Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi are to start testing their protein-based Covid-19 vaccine on humans for the first time, following promising results in earlier studies. GSK, the world’s largest vaccine …

GSK and Sanofi to start human trials of potential Covid-19 vaccine Read More »

AstraZeneca expands Covid-19 vaccine deal as final trials begin

UK drugmaker and Oxford Biomedica to produce more of potential coronavirus product Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage AstraZeneca has expanded an agreement with Oxford Biomedica to scale up production of its potential Covid-19 vaccine, as the race continues to find an effective prevention for the deadly virus. Under the supply agreement, …

AstraZeneca expands Covid-19 vaccine deal as final trials begin Read More »

AstraZeneca starts Covid-19 antibody drug trial in UK

Volunteers are receiving doses of drug, which has potential both as a vaccine and a treatment Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The pharmaceutical group AstraZeneca has started a clinical trial of a drug to help prevent and treat Covid-19, with the first volunteers already receiving doses. The company, which is separately …

AstraZeneca starts Covid-19 antibody drug trial in UK Read More »

Six of the most promising treatments for Covid-19 so far

While a cure-all drug or therapy is a long way off, there have been some breakthroughs Many different drugs and therapies are being trialled and used on patients with Covid-19. There are some positive results, which may be beginning to bring the hospital death toll down, but there is still a long way to go …

Six of the most promising treatments for Covid-19 so far Read More »

Oxford University Covid-19 vaccine firm denies Trump talks

AstraZeneca says it has not discussed ‘emergency use authorisation’ with the US Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The company manufacturing the Oxford University coronavirus vaccine has denied it is in talks with the Trump administration about fast-tracking its vaccine for emergency use ahead of November’s presidential elections. With both Russia and …

Oxford University Covid-19 vaccine firm denies Trump talks Read More »

Honey better treatment for coughs and colds than antibiotics, study claims

Research suggests honey also more effective than many over-the-counter medicines Honey may be better than conventional treatments for coughs, blocked noses and sore throats, researchers have said. The substance is cheap, readily available, and has virtually no side-effects. Doctors can recommend it as a suitable alternative to antibiotics, which are often prescribed for such infections, …

Honey better treatment for coughs and colds than antibiotics, study claims Read More »

‘Vaccine nationalism’ stands in the way of an end to the Covid-19 crisis | Stephen Buranyi

Russia is not the only country pursuing domestic politics over global cooperation in the fight against coronavirus We’re all waiting for a coronavirus vaccine, but when Russia announced earlier this week that it would be the first country to approve one, nobody rejoiced. Scientists pointed out clinical testing wasn’t complete, the vaccine had been tested …

‘Vaccine nationalism’ stands in the way of an end to the Covid-19 crisis | Stephen Buranyi Read More »

UK agrees deals for 90m doses of two potential coronavirus vaccines

Government secures early access to those being developed by Novavax and Janssen Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK government has reached agreements it says will give British citizens early access to 90m doses of two more potential Covid-19 vaccines. The vaccines are being developed by the US biotech company Novavax …

UK agrees deals for 90m doses of two potential coronavirus vaccines Read More »

The Guardian view on Brexit bureaucracy: tied up in red tape | Editorial

Businesses already struggling with the fallout from Covid-19 will be forced to deal with a mountain of new bureaucracy in the middle of a deep recession The government did not quite achieve the Brexit breakthrough it was seeking on Friday, when there was hope that a fast-tracked trade agreement with Japan might be reached. But …

The Guardian view on Brexit bureaucracy: tied up in red tape | Editorial Read More »

Up to 750,000 UK Covid test kits recalled due to safety concerns

Products made by diagnostics firm Randox removed from care homes and individuals Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage the Up to 750,000 unused coronavirus testing kits manufactured by diagnostics company Randox have been recalled from care homes and individuals due to concerns about safety standards. At the beginning of the coronavirus crisis, …

Up to 750,000 UK Covid test kits recalled due to safety concerns Read More »

UK warns drug firms to stockpile in case of Brexit disruption

Companies should ensure six weeks’ worth of drugs for end of transition period, DHSC says Pharmaceutical companies should stockpile six weeks’ worth of drugs to guard against disruption at the end of the Brexit transition period, the government has said. The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has written to medicine suppliers advising them …

UK warns drug firms to stockpile in case of Brexit disruption Read More »

Return to work: a sector-by-sector look at the plans of England’s major employers

Companies can return to work from 1 August, but many employers are making their own plans Companies ready to defy Boris Johnson’s planned return to work Future shape of offices: proposals to make workplaces safe Major companies in England have been told that, from 1 August, they can discuss with workers whether it is safe …

Return to work: a sector-by-sector look at the plans of England’s major employers Read More »

Coronavirus: UK signs deal for 60m doses of potential vaccine

GlaxoSmithKline and Sanofi Pasteur could supply vaccine by early next year if it is successful Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The government has signed a deal with the pharmaceutical firms GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Sanofi Pasteur for 60m doses of a potential Covid-19 vaccine. If the vaccine proves successful, the UK could …

Coronavirus: UK signs deal for 60m doses of potential vaccine Read More »

UK must ensure medicines replenished for Covid-19 second wave

The trade committee urged ministers to develop “parallel supply chains” as a solution Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Britain needs to ensure its stockpile of medicines is replenished to deal with a second wave of coronavirus and any shocks to a supply chain dominated by China and India, the trade committee …

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AstraZeneca signs deal worth up to £4.7bn for cancer treatment

Pharmaceuticals company buys global rights to new technology from Japan’s Daiichi Sankyo Drugmaker AstraZeneca could pay up to $6bn (£4.7bn) for the global rights to a new Japanese cancer treatment. The Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company said it would pay $1bn (£800m) up front to its partner Daiichi Sankyo. Related: Covid-19 is Big Pharma’s chance to impress. …

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‘Major’ breakthrough in Covid-19 drug makes UK professors millionaires

Synairgen’s share price rises 540% on morning of news of successful drugs trial Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Three professors at the University of Southampton school of medicine have this week made a “major breakthrough” in the treatment of coronavirus patients and become paper millionaires at the same time. Almost two …

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GSK buys £130m stake in German coronavirus vaccine maker

Stake of 10% in CureVac is part of deal that could eventually be worth more than £800m Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline has bought a 10% stake in a German biotech company that is a key player in the global race for a coronavirus vaccine as …

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UK ‘95% sure’ Russian hackers tried to steal coronavirus vaccine research

Minister says Britain and allies confident Russian intelligence was behind cyber-attacks Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK security minister James Brokenshire has said Britain is “more than 95%” sure that Russian state-sponsored hackers targeted UK, US and Canadian organisations involved in developing a coronavirus vaccine. Brokenshire said the National Cyber …

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UK government orders halt to Randox Covid-19 tests over safety issues

Care homes and members of public told to immediately stop using firm’s kits Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK government has instructed care homes and members of the public to immediately stop using coronavirus testing kits produced by a healthcare firm after safety problems were discovered. Randox was awarded a …

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Oxford offers best hope for Covid-19 vaccine this year, MPs told

University is leading rivals but first drugs may not work fully, says vaccine taskforce chair Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Oxford University is leading the world in developing a vaccine against Covid-19 and offers the best chance of having something protective against the virus as we go into winter, MPs have …

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Watchdogs warn pharmacies not to hike price of face masks

Regulators also criticise sale of paracetamol and hand sanitiser at excessive costs Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Two UK watchdogs have warned pharmacies they should not be overcharging customers for in-demand items including face masks, hand sanitiser and paracetamol. With face masks compulsory on public transport and increasing numbers of people …

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UK firms critical to public health protected from foreign takeovers

Legislation protects those needed in future pandemics who may be struggling now Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The UK government has introduced legislation to protect businesses that are key to public health from foreign takeovers. The changes give the government the power to protect companies that could be critical in helping …

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‘The wondrous map’: how unlocking human DNA changed the course of science

Thanks to the success of the Human Genome Project, 20 years ago this week, scientists can track biology and disease at a molecular level Twenty years ago this week, an international group of scientists announced it had put together the first genetic blueprint of a human being. After 10 years of effort, the team – …

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Watchdog investigates possible overcharging for hand sanitiser in UK

Four unnamed stores suspected by competition regulator of profiteering during Covid-19 crisis Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage The competition watchdog is to investigate suspected profiteering by four pharmacies and convenience stores for over-charging shoppers for hand sanitiser during the coronavirus pandemic. Stocks of hand sanitiser were among the first items the …

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Demand for flu vaccine soars as countries plan for second Covid-19 wave

Manufacturers warn they will struggle to meet demand as governments seek to ease pressure on health services Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage Fears of a second wave of coronavirus have sparked a global scramble for influenza shots from countries that hope to vaccinate great swathes of the population to reduce pressure …

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The Lancet’s editor: ‘The UK’s response to coronavirus is the greatest science policy failure for a generation’

Richard Horton does not hold back in his criticism of the UK’s response to the pandemic and the medical establishment’s part in backing fatal government decisions Coronavirus – latest updates See all our coronavirus coverage There is a school of thought that says now is not the time to criticise the government and its scientific …

The Lancet’s editor: ‘The UK’s response to coronavirus is the greatest science policy failure for a generation’

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What on earth is the boss of AstraZeneca up to with his approach to Gilead? | Nils Pratley

Pascal Soriot heroically defended the company against Pfizer, but now he needs to calm his investors It’s hard to keep AstraZeneca out of the headlines. A booming share price made the company the biggest in the FTSE 100 index last month, albeit Shell is now marginally in front again. More significantly, the group is in …

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