At the 64th World Health Assembly underway right now in Geneva thru May 24, a major review of smallpox experimentation will be presented where leaders are expected to call for the destruction of all remaining samples, since the disease has not surfaced in over 40 years. Meanwhile, two biopharm companies are in a spat over a US government awarded contract to develop a smallpox vaccine, as the U.S. continues to refuse to submit to international arms control inspections of its “dual use” biodefense-bioweapons labs.
In-Pharma Technologist reports, “On May 13 Siga Technologies revealed the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) had awarded it a five-year, $433m (€306m) contract. However, two days later Siga was forced to suspend work on the contract after Chimerix filed a protest.”
If all the options in the contract are exercised, it is worth $2.8 billion to Siga, In-Pharma explained.