Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Vaccines And Variants

H/T Jim

The Daily Telegraph (UK) is reporting that two studies in the US--one at the University of Washington and one at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention--indicate that persons who have been vaxed and then contract Covid are far more likely than unvaxxed persons to contract a variant. Of special concern, according to the article, is the fact that while these vaxed individuals who contract a Covid variant have not died (in the Washington study) they do exhibit a very high "viral load," meaning that they would likely be able to infect others.

You may recall that a vaccine developer whom we cited in the past, Geert Vanden Bossche, expressed a strong concern that the use of these vaccines while the pandemic was still ongoing would tend to foster the development of new variants that might actually be more problematic than the original version. Here's how Vanden Bossche expressed his concern in Vax Hesitancy--Reasonable Or Not? 

In summary, the concerns center around the notion that a combination of lockdowns and extreme selection pressure on the virus induced by the intense global mass vaccination program might diminish the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths in the short-term, but ultimately, will induce the creation of more mutants of concern.

This is the result of what Vanden Bossche calls ‘immune escape’ (i.e. incomplete sterilization of the virus by the human immune system, even following vaccine administration). This will in turn trigger vaccine companies to further refine vaccines that will add, not reduce, the selection pressure, so producing ever more transmissible and potentially deadly variants.

The selection pressure will cause greater convergence in mutations that affect the critical spike protein of the virus that is responsible for breaking through the mucosal surfaces of our airways, the route used by the virus to enter the human body. The virus will effectively outsmart the highly specific antigen-based vaccines that are being used and tweaked, dependent on the circulating variants. All of this could lead to a hockey stick-like increase in serious and potentially lethal cases — in effect, an out-of-control pandemic.

Not only that, it will be Western nations with high proportions of metabolically diseased, overweight or obese individuals with compromised immune systems that will be hit hardest.

Below is a fairly full excerpt from the Telegraph article. I'm not qualified to comment in any depth. However, I will point out that there is at least one discrepancy between what Vanden Bossche said and what the study author (Pavitra Roychoudhury) says. According to Vanden Bossche the "antigen-based vaccines" are "highly specific". Roychoudhury, on the other hand, maintains that 

"A lot of the antibody responses are pretty broad. The vaccines are not designed to be super specific so they will be able to target the variants."

I'll go out on a limb a bit and state that my impression is that Roychoudhury's tone is that of a cheerleader for the vaccines. Nevertheless, according to the article, she is aware that her findings go against the "prevailing understanding" of what would have been expected. Clearly, this is a "developing situation."

Fully vaccinated people who catch Covid variants may pass virus on, study finds

Study shows post-jab cases more likely to be infected with virus strains that have emerged in recent months.


Researchers at the University of Washington in the United States sequenced samples from 20 health workers who went on to contract Covid after receiving both doses of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.

The study showed that all 20 were infected with variants of concern that have been driving second waves of Covid in many parts of the world – eight had the UK variant, one the South African variant, 10 had one of the two California variants and one had the Brazilian variant.

The researchers then compared the samples collected from this group with samples collected from 5,174 non-vaccinated individuals who had Covid.

While everyone in the vaccinated group had a variant of concern, only 67 per cent of non-vaccinated individuals did. The study also showed that the vaccinated individuals infected with Covid had high viral loads.

Dr Pavitra Roychoudhury, the lead author of the study, said the "prevailing understanding" was that while vaccine breakthrough cases would occur, they would be mild.

"But in contrast to that, what we saw among our 20 samples was that a number of them actually had quite robust viral loads. That was concerning in the sense that there was definitely enough virus to sequence, and potentially there might be enough virus to transmit," she said.

None of the 20 patients studied were hospitalised ...


A recent study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also showed that vaccinated individuals who contracted the disease were also likely to be infected with variants.

Data released earlier this week showed that, as of April 30, there were 10,262 cases of post-vaccination infection among the 101 million people that had been fully vaccinated.

Some 555 of these 10,000 samples were sequenced and researchers found that 356 were identified as variants of concern. ...



  1. The m-RNA and the other two non-m-RNA vaccines are much more specific in nature than the old style attenuate/dead virus vaccines- they are so by design- the only protein being generated by these vaccines that is related to COVID is a version of the spike protein- that is it. Your body mounts a response to that protein alone and, possibly, to the vehicle used to deliver it which is not a COVID virus.

    Against the live COVID virus, your body will mount a defense to any part of that virus presented on the surface of MHC (major histocompatibility complex) cells. This is a broader based immunity than the single immunity against the spike protein.

    1. Thanks, Yancey. It was late and my mind was tired. That explains it well. I was pretty sure that Vanden Bossche had it right and that the other doc was simply pitching for the vax.

  2. "All of this could lead to a hockey stick-like increase in serious and potentially lethal cases — in effect, an out-of-control pandemic.

    Not only that, it will be Western nations with high proportions of metabolically diseased, overweight or obese individuals with compromised immune systems that will be hit hardest."

    Is it fair to speculate that this is a feature, not a bug, pardon the pun.


  3. Mark,

    Thanks for the H/T ... I appreciate your posts (obviously ;-)

    I, personally, see Vanden Bossche and Michael Yeadon (former research head at Pfizer) as the 'Gold Standard' for understanding what's at stake as each represent the alternative 'side of the coin' in predicting what might go wrong..Vanden Bossche is concerned about accelerating the proliferation of variants ...while Yeadon who is in agreement, but wasn't as concerned that they would be more dangerous, just that they would continue to proliferate. Each disagree with mass vaccination in the midst of a pandemic.

    After monitoring this now ,for months, It would seem that the real problem is that if the virus does indeed turn out to mutate, and the variants continue to develop while we are still following this ludicrous mandate to promote vaccinations over therapies (IVermectin, HCQ) then those who have been vaccinated will continue to observe this directive and then fail to resort to available therapies as they await the next 'Top - off' (a phrase used by Yeadon) which will only delay treatment which will allow the infection to remain in the system without challenge while the subject awaits said boosters ...

    All clinical physicians who have used the therapies rave about their effectiveness if used either as a prophylactic or early on once symptoms arise ...

    If these treatments continue to be dismissed and/or demonized by the medical bureaucracy ...many of those who chose to vaccinate, will continue to eschew them ..thus allowing more time for the virus to 'load into' their systems and increasingly the likely of a 'long haul' or even death...

    Seem a recipe for guaranteed failure ..and more deaths


    1. Glad to, Jim. Most of these experienced and knowledgeable scientists set out as a basic principle: no vaccine when there's effective treatment available. That's the principle behind the FDA's requirement of "no effective treatement" before emergency authorization is allowed. The principle makes sense, because of almost inevitable side effects from any vaccine. Vaccine absolutism is a pseudo science ideology, with a non-medical (in the traditional sense) agenda.

    2. If I might posit a Jeremiad here ....

      It seems like with these reports of 'break through' infections and increasing variants, that the Yeadon/Vanden Bossche forecasts increasingly seem to be borne out ....

      In my view, this means that the time to end this debate about "Vaccine vs Therapeutics" is fast growing near. My guess is, like me, many of your friends , family and acquaintances opted to vaccinate ....I wont argue that point since, now that we know the virus was spawned in a lab, we can't say for sure what sort of 'gain of function' it was given ...

      That being the case ...we still need to deal with the facts on the ground.

      If our friends and family are at greater chance of reinfection due to these variants ...shouldn't we be even more insistent that the Therapeutics become made widely available NOW ???

      We've already learned that the longer a person is infected prior to being hospitalized and treated, the greater the likelihood that they will either be 'long hauled' or even die (likely depending on their health/fitness status ) ...

      We KNOW that the 'top-offs' wont be available for a long time ....and the 'waiting line' to get them once they are, will likely be long ....

      Seems a no-brainer to opt for therapeutics ... for MORE than obvious reasons...


    3. As Hunter Baiden would say: True dat.

  4. Off the top of my head---I can't find the study

    Comparing 20 v 5174 does NOT a meaningful comparison make--at all! The next 5154 cases in vaxed patients may well make the numbers the same, or even show LESS infection with the variant. Even the next TEN cases might.
    (I can't believe that got published.)

    Also--did hte 5174 cases happen the same time as the 20 post vax? Or did the 20 post vax happen recently, when the variant was here, v the 5174 having been since the beginning of the pandemic???

    Seems to be junk science, designed to support re vaxing, or continued ineffective masking and lockdowns to me.

    1. You're misreading this. Of vaxxed people who got infected 100% had a variant. That's what the cause for concern is. It's also what people like Bossche and Yeadon were predicting would happen--not immediately but as the virus mutates.

    2. The much larger study toward the end of the quote shows roughly 2/3 with variants, but that's also from mid-April. Breakthroughs and variants are separate issues.