The biopolitics of Covaxin
In a new investigation, STAT has reported fresh problems with Covaxin’s approval process in India, including the phase 2 trial dropping its placebo arm in favour of one preordained to make Covaxin look good and Bharat Biotech – the maker – commencing phase 3 trials based on results from animal studies. I’m also filing the report… Continue reading
The toxic affair between Covaxin and The Lancet
That Covaxin has been leading a ceaselessly beleaguered life is no mystery – but The Lancet journal may not know that it has been pressed into the questionable service of saving the vaccine’s reputation on at least three occasions. In the latest one, for example, Bharat Biotech, some clueless media outlets and their hordes of… Continue reading
Is Covaxin’s WHO approval guaranteed?
I suspect after reading this PTI report that the WHO is practically helping Bharat Biotech put together a better application to have its COVID-19 vaccine, Covaxin, get the body’s approval for international use, instead of simply considering what Bharat Biotech chooses to submit. The overall tone of the report is mollificatory – as if the… Continue reading
It’s great that the WHO isn’t just ‘not cutting corners’
Call me anti-national (and I’m sure many will) but I’m glad that the WHO isn’t just “not cutting corners” in the process of considering Bharat Biotech’s application for the UN body’s stamp of approval Covaxin but is also openly calling for more and more information from the company at periodic intervals. This isn’t just a… Continue reading
Pandemic: A world-building exercise
First, there was light news of a vaccine against COVID-19 nearing the end of its phase 3 clinical trials with very promising results, accompanied with breezy speculations (often tied to the stock prices of a certain drug-maker) about how it’s going to end the pandemic in six months. An Indian disease-transmission modeller – of the… Continue reading
I’m a science editor and writer in India, interested in high-energy and condensed-matter physics, research misconduct, pseudoscience, science’s relationship with society, epic fantasy, open source/access/knowledge systems, H.R. Giger’s art, Goundamani’s comedy, Factorio, and most things that require a lot of time to get the hang of.