HPV vaccine trials and sleeping watchdogs
In April 2010, the government announced an enquiry into the conduct of a study on the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine in Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. More than a year later, the committee’s final report is yet to be made public. The committee’s preliminary report records a number of ethical violations but does not assign responsibility to any individual or institution. Further, the central information commission has refused to provide any details of the study protocol that might constitute “intellectual property”. As the project is described as a feasibility and acceptability study of an approved vaccine, it is not clear what intellectual property is involved here. The CIC’s refusal raises concerns that commercial research is being conducted in the garb of providing a public service.
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