WHO announces first global license for Covid-19 technology

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Drug Patent Group (MPP) today announced the first transparent, global and non-exclusive license for a Covid-19 serological antibody technology.

The four existing tests that effectively detect the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies developed after an infection or a dose of vaccine will be provided to poor and middle-income countries, both entities said in a statement.

Based on an agreement reached with the Spanish Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), the objective of the license is to facilitate the rapid manufacture and commercialization of the tool throughout the world, they added.

I congratulate the CSIC, a public research institute, for its commitment to solidarity and for offering international access to its technology and knowledge, said WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The authority urged developers of anti-Covid-19 drugs, treatments and diagnoses against the disease to follow this example to change the course and the devastating global inequality that this pandemic has highlighted.

The president of the CSIC, Rosa Menéndez, highlighted the importance of seeking solutions so that the tools related to Convid-19 in particular, and health in general, reach all nations, including those most in need.

The technology, according to the WHO, should help conduct more research on the level and duration of immunity and the effectiveness of treatments available to people.

The tests, he noted, are easy to use and suitable for all settings with a basic laboratory infrastructure, such as those found in rural areas of low- and middle-income countries.

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