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Medicine: Smallpox Drug / SIGA Sweetheart Deal / A Discussion #1009253

CNN Evening News for Thursday, Dec 08, 2011
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(Studio: Anderson Cooper) A CNN investigation into why the government is paying for the development of a smallpox drug introduced.

(Washington: Drew Griffin) The story behind billionaire investor and Democratic contributor Ron Perlman, who owns SIGA, which got a 432 million dollar contract from the HHS, presented; details given about the past concerns about bioterrorism using the smallpox virus, the SIGA drug, the role of former SEIU head Andy Stern, who was named to the SIGA board, how the government changed the terms of the bidding that allowed Siga to be the only bidder and the company's profit percentage. [Senator Claire McCASKILL†- says we need to ask questions about developing drugs.] [Representative Sam GRAVES†- comments on the connection between the company and the administration.] [University of Pittsburgh Dr. D.A. HENDERSON†- questions the smallpox drug treating the disease.] The statement from the HHS about the SIGA contract and a written statement from SIGA about the contract quoted.

(Studio: Anderson Cooper) Live discussion held with CNN's Fran Townsend, who is on the SIGA board, and Drew Griffin about the SIGA deal. [TOWNSEND - comments on the inaccuracies in the story behind the SIGA contract and why there is no competition for a smallpox antiviral; defends the diversity of the SIGA board.] [GRIFFIN - raises questions about the drug having no commercial value and about the role of former White House people involved in contracts.]

Cooper, Anderson;
Griffin, Drew

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