Mold-infested facility supplied materials for Pfizer and Moderna vaccines

David Stonebrook is blowing the whistle on Research Organics / SAFC Cleveland, which is owned by Merck which owns Sigma-Aldrich. The facility was infested with mold and had other obvious problems that could contaminate the end product. This facility made supplies for many pharma companies; some of those supplies were used for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

For the whistleblower to receive money under the False Claims Act, he has to prove that the US government was defrauded so that’s why Pfizer and Moderna are named in his complaint. (The US government purchased possibly adulterated product from Pfizer and Moderna.)

The photos

Mold growth

and zoomed in, showing mold growth more clearly:

zoomed in even more:

Supplier for Pfizer and Moderna


SAFC Cleveland manufactures and packages HEPES, a zwitterionic sulfonic acid buffering agent, that is used to maintain enzyme structure and help the enzyme function at low temperatures. HEPES is sold directly from SAFC Cleveland to Pfizer.


  1. SAFC Cleveland manufactures and packages pharmaceutical components TRIS hydrochloride and Tromethamine, USP.^ Tromethamine, USP isa buffering agent that is used to adjust or stabilize the pH balance of a solution and can be used to treat metabolic acidosis—a condition where the body produces too much acid or when the kidneys are not removing enough acid from the body. TRIS hydrochloride is similar to Tromethamine, but contains additional hydrochloride molecules and is also used to stabilize the pH balance of a solution.

  2. Tromethamine and TRIS hydrochlroride are both ingredients in the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine. Specifically, Tromethamine and TRIS hydrochlroride are “acid stablizers” in the Moderna Vaccine and ensure the stability of the vaccine after production and until it is administered to a patient.

How to read the court filings

The complaint:

All filings in the docket: