Moderna Sues Pfizer and BioNTech Over COVID-19 Vaccine Patent
The lawsuit sets up a clash between rival vaccine makers
Moderna sued Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech on Friday, alleging that the rival firms improperly used its foundational technology in developing their coronavirus vaccine. The suit sets up a legal battle between the most prominent companies that helped curb the coronavirus pandemic in the United States by developing highly effective shots in record time.
"We believe that Pfizer and BioNTech unlawfully copied Moderna’s inventions, and they have continued to use them without permission,” Moderna Chief Legal Officer Shannon Thyme Klinger said in a company news release. The company said it filed suits in U.S. District Court in Massachusetts and in Germany, where BioNTech is headquartered.
The prospect of a legal battle between the mRNA vaccine makers points to the high stakes in the competition between Pfizer, a global pharmaceutical giant, and Moderna, a start-up biotechnology company based in Massachusetts that had never sold a product before it won emergency authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its coronavirus vaccine in late 2020.
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