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Adapting and responding as COVID-19 evolves

The evolution of COVID-19 underscores the need for continued innovation in COVID-19 R&D - The emergence of new variants continues to threaten the efficacy of available treatments, including Eli Lilly's COVID-19 antibody treatment, bebtelovimab, which is no longer authorized for use by the US FDA. Similar decisions have been adopted for other COVID-19 treatments, including AstraZeneca's Evusheld, Roche's REGEN-COV (Ronapreve), and GSK's Sotrovimab. This situation highlights the need for sustained investment in R&D for new COVID-19 tools.

The EMA's human medicines committee (CHMP) recommends authorizing Pfizer's and Moderna's adapted vaccines to provide broader protection against COVID-19.

The Global Fund signs an agreement with Pfizer, enabling access to its COVID-19 treatment, Paxlovid, to all 132 countries part of the ACT-Accelerator.

Shionogi and the Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) sign a license agreement for the company's COVID-19 antiviral candidate, to facilitate additional production and distribution of the investigational antiviral, pending regulatory authorisation or approval. Qualified generic manufacturers that are granted sublicences by MPP will be able to manufacture and supply ensitrelvir to 117 countries.

Fujifilm Holdings announces that it has discontinued the development of its anti-influenza drug, Avigan, for use as a therapeutic drug against COVID-19. The decision was made considering clinical trials results that were unable to confirm its effectiveness.

Gavi and Moderna update the COVAX supply agreement, agreeing on access to variant-containing vaccines for lower-income countries.

The European Commission approves VidPrevtyn® Beta, Sanofi and GSK's next-generation protein-based adjuvanted COVID-19 booster vaccine against the Beta variant.

Shionogi announces the emergency approval for Japan's first domestic COVID-19 oral antiviral.

According to Airfinity data, only 7% of the doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 treatment, Paxlovid, that are available through the ACT-A, have been accepted by low-income countries.

IFPMA participates at the 100 Days Mission Industry Roundtable, which re-launches the 100 Days Mission and the Pact for Pandemic Readiness. The innovative pharmaceutical industry re-commits to working with G7 and other stakeholders including CEPI, GAVI, the WHO, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wellcome Trust to reach the milestone of developing vaccines, treatments, and diagnostics within 100 days of the announcement of a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC).