A network analysis of Covid-19 vaccines

The rapid development of Covid-19 vaccines has been underpinned by an intricate web of co-patents, intellectual property agreements and lawsuits. Showing them as a network can be useful to highlight the most relevant nodes and the relations they’re embedded into. A preliminary work on this has been recently featured in Nature Biotechnology. Besides reconstructing the main actors in the production of mRNA vaccines, the authors have also analyzed the landscape of scientific terms used in mRNA patents, using a network methodology and the software VOS viewer . A heated debate is underway around the possibility to limit intellectual property rights to facilitate the access to vaccines for developing countries, and network visualization tools can greatly help in understanding the complexity of the relations at stake.

Source: Gaviria and Kilic, 2021: A network analysis of COVID-19 mRNA vaccine patents. Nature Biotechnology, VOL 39, pp. 546–549.

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