President Biden’s pick for the government’s top scientist will have to refrain from working on COVID vaccine issues until he cedes up to $ 1 million in stock in a company that makes one, the White House told Axios.
Why it matters: Dr Eric Lander also won’t be working on other issues that could affect his sizable portfolio until he’s fully divested, the White House said. It could take months, potentially crippling a key administration at a crucial time.
What’s new: in financial disclosure paperwork made public on Monday, Lander, a renowned geneticist at MIT appointed to head the White House Bureau of Science and Technology Politics, disclosed to own shares valued between $ 500,000 and $ 1 million in the company BioNTech.
- The company is making a vaccine with Pfizer that was among the first two to receive emergency use authorization.
- It was just one of many holdings in Lander’s portfolio, which includes many other pharmaceutical and biotech companies.
- Lander was the founder of biopharmaceutical company Codiak Biosciences and disclosed equity in the company worth between $ 5 million and $ 25 million. This company also sought to develop a COVID vaccine.
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