[Marxism] the drug cartel II: making vaccines w/o people

Les Schaffer schaffer at optonline.net
Fri Nov 26 23:31:30 MST 2004

last month we discussed the shortage of flu vaccine in the US and how drug 
companies had opted out of the vaccine production business due to low profit 

now that a compmany using "old" technology has failed to deliver this years 
dose of drugs, vaccine shortages and fear exist, the venture capital spigot 
flows again. 

Protein Sciences Corp, a company nearby me in CT has been developing a vaccine 
production scheme where the "incubator" is living cells rather than eggs. 
while it holds the promise for speedier development of vaccines without the 
problems like occured in the recent disruption, another feature is sure to 
attract investors. from the Washington Post:

Flu Crisis Sparks Fresh Look at Vaccine Production

"When you walk into a cell culture factory, you see gleaming stainless steel 
-- glass and steel and computers and very few people," said Noel Barrett, 
vice president of research and development at Baxter International Inc. of 
Deerfield, Ill., which has built a cell culture factory in the Czech 

Walking into a chicken egg factory, by contrast, Barrett said, "You see lots 
of eggs, thousands and thousands of eggs, and lots of people, and you see 
that these factories are quite old." 

so somehow Chiron's oversight of their manufacturing process is not to blame 
for this year's wasted batch, no. instead lots of people work in these older 
buildings and its just hard to keep it all clean. the logic of capital.

from a recent issue of BioWorld linked in Protein Sciences news page:

The flu vaccine shortage in the US might help Protein Sciences get the funds 
it needs.

"The flu vaccine shortage doesnt affect the timeline for this trial because we 
are on track", Cox said. "What it does affect if the interest of the venture 
capitalists and the financial community"


les schaffer

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