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Italy Seeks to Manufacture Vaccines

Italy is hoping to get manufacturers of mRNA-based SARS-CoV-2 vaccines to produce doses there, the Financial Times reports.

It adds that Italy has held talks with Moderna, Novartis, and ReiThera to discuss the possibility of domestic vaccine production, but notes that the talks are all in early stages or, in the case of discussions with Moderna, failed. According to the Financial Times, Moderna does not have the capacity or staff to oversee the setup of or the production at sites in Italy.

The discussions, though, underscore the shift in Europe away from adenovirus-vector vaccines and toward mRNA-based ones, FT writes. Following blood clot concerns, a number of European countries halted their use of the use of AstraZeneca's vaccine or added age restrictions and have now delayed their rollout of Johnson & Johnson's vaccine, it notes.

"We need to focus now on technologies that have proven their worth," European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday, according to FT. "MRNA vaccines are a clear case in point."

The Scan

More Boosters for US

Following US Food and Drug Administration authorization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has endorsed booster doses of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, the Washington Post writes.

From a Pig

A genetically modified pig kidney was transplanted into a human without triggering an immune response, Reuters reports.

For Privacy's Sake

Wired reports that more US states are passing genetic privacy laws.

Science Paper on How Poaching Drove Evolution in African Elephants

In Science this week: poaching has led to the rapid evolution of tuskless African elephants.