[thechat] pure evil: Tobacco giant buys rights to lung cancer drugs

spinhead evolt at spinhead.com
Mon Dec 3 11:22:07 CST 2001

This is infinitely more distressing than whether or not Microsoft is a
monopoly. I'm really puzzled that anyone has moral capacities limited enough
that they could do this.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Isaac Forman" <isaac at triplezero.com.au>
To: <isaac at triplezero.com.au>
Sent: Monday, November 12, 2001 6:15 PM
Subject: [thechat] pure evil: Tobacco giant buys rights to lung cancer drugs

> This is the definition of pure evil:
> ---
> Tobacco giant buys rights to lung cancer drugs
> http://www.theage.com.au/news/world/2001/11/13/FFX8YC44XTC.html
> Tuesday 13 November 2001
> One of the world's biggest tobacco companies aims to make billions of
> dollars from diseases caused by cigarettes through deals with biotech
> companies for exclusive rights to future lung cancer vaccines.
> The plan by Japan Tobacco, which makes Camel, Winston, Mild Seven and
> was condemned on Sunday as cynical and dangerous. If a successful lung
> cancer vaccine was found, it would not stop smokers dying of other
> tobacco-related diseases. But such a vaccine, promoted by a tobacco
> could encourage smoking.
> "Giving a tobacco company exclusive rights to lung cancer vaccines is like
> putting Dracula in charge of a blood bank," said Helen Wallace, deputy
> director of GeneWatch UK, which uncovered the deals.
> She is worried that one of the biotech companies, Seattle-based Corixa
> aims to patent human lung cancer gene sequences, which may have come from
> smoker unaware of the commercial prospects his genes offered.
> Derek Yach, director of the non-communicable diseases cluster at the World
> Health Organisation, said: "We tackle lung cancer by breaking the
> grip of the tobacco industry and taking action to help people quit smoking
> or never start. The last company that should control the rights to a lung
> cancer vaccine is one that makes huge profits from products that cause the
> disease."
> Japan Tobacco has paid Corixa for an exclusive licence to develop and sell
> vaccine and antibody-based products that prevent or treat lung cancer.
> The idea is to use certain proteins in lung cancer tumors to generate an
> immune response in the patient.
> The other contract, with California-based Cell Genesys, was signed in late
> 1998.
> Japan Tobacco has also invested in UK company British Biotech, which is
> working on a genetically engineered protein that can dissolve and prevent
> blood clots and may help prevent heart attacks and strokes.
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> The doors close...The doors reopen.
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the doors."
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