The ousted director of the office involved in developing a coronavirus vaccine has quit his post at the National Institutes of Health, charging that the Trump administration “ignores scientific expertise, overrules public health guidance and disrespects career scientists”.

Dr Rick Bright, a whistleblower who crossed swords with the Trump administration over claims his warnings over both coronavirus and the utility of hydroxychloroquine were ignored, left his role complaining that his plan to develop a national testing infrastructure had also been sidelined.

Bright is an immunologist who formerly headed the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, a department of health and human services (HHS) agency that works to prepare the nation for such threats as a pandemic or a bioterrorism attack. That agency is now playing a central role in the campaign to deliver a coronavirus vaccine.

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