By Julie Beal
Most of the coronavirus vaccines are genetic potions of one kind or another, and so much time and money has gone into them, it seems a return on investment is now due. Genetic vaccines are part of a huge industry based on synthetic versions of natural biology, with many prepped and ready to go.
Tracing back the history of DNA vaccines for HIV and Ebola begins to shed some light on how the coronavirus vaccines came into being. This article (Part 1) is about DNA vaccines for Ebola, e.g. trials in Africa that used contact tracing, and where people felt like lab rats, vaccine ingredients and genetic contaminants. Part 2 will trace the endless failures of DNA vaccines for HIV over the last 30 years, and look at how HIV brought in the concept of testing for ‘cases of suspected infection’.
The Green Light for a Genetic Vaccine
On 12 November, 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) greased the wheels for Merck’s genetic Ebola vaccine as part of “the fastest vaccine prequalification process ever conducted by WHO”. It’s said that more than 303,000 people in the Congo were given the vaccine during trials.
“This is a historic step ….” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Five years ago, we had no vaccine and no therapeutics for Ebola. With a prequalified vaccine and experimental therapeutics, Ebola is now preventable and treatable.”
In order to bring Merck’s vaccine, Ervebo, to market, the WHO worked with GAVI, the ‘vaccine alliance’, and the European Medicines Agency (EMA); two days before the WHO prequalification, the European Commission granted Merck conditional marketing authorization for the vaccine, following a recommendation from the EMA. African regulators “have indicated they will quickly license the vaccine following the WHO recommendation”. Ervebo was also approved by the FDA on 19 December, 2019.
Originally with the catchy name ‘rVSV-ZEBOV’, the vaccine uses the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) as a way to get the fake DNA version of Ebola inside the cells of the body. The VSV is recombinant (genetically engineered) and becomes a hybrid because it’s got some genetic code hidden inside it that says “Make Ebola proteins!” This is supposed to mimic a natural infection, and the body is supposed to understand the man-made code and react accordingly. The same method is being used by several other companies for all sorts of ‘viral infections’; most notably, the ronavax made by AstraZeneca and J&J, both of which use adenoviruses to carry the code for coronavirus proteins. However, unlike the viral vectors used for the ronavax, this one is replication competent, meaning it’s able to multiply inside the person who’s been vaccinated.
To get a taste of how freaky the genetic concoctions get, take a look at some of the other ‘medicines’ being touted by the EMA (all of which are being trialled in the DRC):
- REGN-EB3, a co-formulated cocktail of three human monoclonal antibodies against the Ebola virus glycoprotein
- mab114, a recombinant human IgG1 antibody against the Ebola virus glycoprotein
- remdesivir, a prodrug of a modified adenine nucleoside analogue (called GS-441524)
- ZMAPP, an equimolar mixture of three mouse/human chimeric IgG1, kappa mAbs.
THE ERVEBO PACKAGE INSERT
The vaccine has to be stored in a freezer, and once thawed, “ERVEBO is a colorless to slightly brownish-yellow liquid with no particulates visible.” The vaccine virus is delivered in a solution “containing10 mM Tromethamine (Tris) and2.5 mg/mL rice-derived recombinant human serum albumin. Each 1 mL dose may contain residual amounts of host cell DNA (≤10 ng) and benzonase (≤15ng). The vaccine may contain trace amounts of rice protein.”
It’s for people aged 18 years or more; they’ve no idea how long it’ll make you produce antibodies for, but it does come out of the body so can be spread around:
Vaccine virus RNA has been detected in blood, saliva, urine, and fluid from skin vesicles of vaccinated adults; transmission of vaccine virus is a theoretical possibility.”
Adverse reactions are said to include:
injection-site pain (70%), swelling (17%), and redness (12%). The most common systemic adverse events reported following vaccination with ERVEBO were headache (37%), feverishness (34%), muscle pain (33%), fatigue (19%), joint pain (18%), nausea (8%), arthritis (5%), rash (4%) and abnormal sweating (3%).
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There were also reports of chills, paraesthesia, anaphylaxis, serious pyrexia reaction, severe arthritis and severe arthralgia. ‘Study 5’ was a group of 24 people who developed arthritis, six of whom had “recurrent or prolonged joint symptoms lasting up to 2 years following vaccination, the longest follow-up period.” Two people in Study 5 had cutaneous vasculitis, and four of them had a rash, which seems to indicate shedding of the recombinant virus. A separate study of 697 people assessed their white blood cell counts and found up to 85% of them had decreases in lymphocytes, while 43% had decreases in neutrophils.
There is no guarantee it won’t cause problems with pregnancy and it may well be in breast milk, since it is replication competent. They don’t appear to have tested for this; in fact, no tests for genetic toxicity are required for genetic vaccines, which are all classed as ‘biologics’. Merck did a few tests on female rats, but other than that, “ERVEBO has not been evaluated for the potential to cause carcinogenicity, genotoxicity or impairment of male fertility.”
Ebola Trials and Tribulations
Ervebo was first developed by the Public Health Agency of Canada, who licensed it to NewLink Genetics, who in turn licensed it to Merck in 2014. Even though Merck developed the vaccine with funding from GAVI, “the knowledge on developing rVSV vaccines … remains Merck’s, and cannot be used by anyone else wishing to develop a rVSV vaccine.” It’s manufactured using the same cell line used for Rotateq, i.e. Vero cells which are from the kidney of an African green monkey.
Ervebo was recently trialled during the “the world’s second largest Ebola outbreak” in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The outbreak lasted two years, and was declared “over” on 25 June, 2020. rVSV-ZEBOV was also trialled in Sierra Leone, and received funding from the WHO, UK Wellcome Trust, the UK Government, Médecins Sans Frontières, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Canadian Government. The trial was called ‘Ebola ça Suffit! which means, ‘Ebola that’s enough!; it was called a “ring vaccination trial” because it involved selectively vaccinating people based on who they’d been near:
After confirmation of a case of Ebola virus disease, we definitively enumerated on a list a ring (cluster) of all their contacts and contacts of contacts including named contacts and contacts of contacts who were absent at the time of the trial team visit.
People were randomly assigned to clusters and some were vaxed and some were not. The primary outcome was a ‘laboratory confirmed case’ of Ebola virus disease, occurring ten days or more after inclusion in the trial. Even though decisions were made about ‘who to vaccinate’, not everybody agreed to take part in the experiment. The Phase 3 trial saw 4,160 people getting the vaccine; there were said to be 80 serious adverse events, two of which were “judged to be related to vaccination”. The vaccine was also given to 2,016 front-line workers, and 70% of them reported adverse events. However, apart from saying that headache and fatigue were the most common, none of the serious adverse events are described, just dismissed as not ‘vaccine-related’.
The front-line workers were all interviewed, and an in-depth analysis was made of their answers, including the people who declined to take part in the trial. Some of their answers were described, and quoted, in a report; for example,
The otherworldly nature of the epidemic gave rise to many conspiracy theories, including that Ebola had been introduced by whites in order to eradicate the population, or that the epidemic was a ploy by the pharmaceutical companies that hoped to profit by forcing expedited (and perhaps less ethically stringent) vaccine trials and production.
Some of the workers said they didn’t want to “become lab rats” for what they perceived as being the “Ebola industry” which was all about profit.
Some were even suspicious that blood was not collected to determine vaccine performance, but instead was being used for other purposes, like screening Ebola patients for quarantine.
Other reports of adverse events said that, out of 5,837 vaccinees (followed up for just twelve weeks), 53.9% of them reported at least one adverse event in the first two weeks, and most but not all of them were ‘mild’; of the 80 reactions that were classified as serious adverse events, two were judged to be related to vaccination (one person had “a febrile reaction”, another suffered anaphylaxis) and one reaction was said to be ‘possibly related’ (it was an “influenza-like illness”); last time they checked, they say, these people were feeling better, so these reactions will be relegated to the dustbin along with all the ones ‘deemed unrelated’.
J&J — PRIMING AND BOOSTING
Janssen is one of many companies trying to bring genetic vaccines to the market, with strong support from the World Health Organization. In July, 2020, J&J’s genetic Ebola vaccine received a Marketing Authorisation from the European Commission so it seems to be following hot on the heels of Merck. After the World Health Organization (WHO) recommended its use in 2019, it was given to more than 50,000 people in Rwanda and the Congo (DRC).
The J&J vaccine also delivers the DNA in a genetically engineered virus, just like their coronavirus vaccine (but with a different DNA insert) and is called ‘Ad26.ZEBOV’. This is part of a ‘vaccine regimen’ where the J&J vaccine is given for the first dose, and then a slightly different version, (in this case made by a different company), is given as the second dose. MVA-BN-Filo is the one used second – about eight weeks after the J&J vax. It’s made by Barvarian Nordic. The J&J vax uses an adenovirus that’s engineered to be replication-deficient, and it contains the genetic instructions for the Zaire Ebola virus glycoprotein, while the Bavarian Nordic vax is a non-replicating, recombinant, modified vaccinia Ankara (MVA) vector-based vaccine, encoding glycoproteins from Zaire Ebola virus, Sudan virus, and Marburg virus, and nucleoprotein from the Tai Forest virus. Janssen’s AdVac® technology is employed to engineer Ad26.ZEBOV; this is a chimpanzee adenovirus vector produced in the human cell line PER.C6 (meaning it’s grown in cells from an aborted foetus). This makes it very similar to the ronavax made by AstraZeneca/Oxford University, except that they’re using cells from a different baby (HEK293). An EMA document lists the ingredients of the J&J vax as being: sodium chloride, sucrose, polysorbate-80, ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) disodium dihydrate salt, L-histidine monohydrochloride monohydrate, ethanol and water for injection.
The method described above, where two different vaccines are used, has been employed in numerous trials for HIV and other viruses. It’s classed as a prime-boost vaccine regimen and is similar to one used in trials by Oxford University. They trialled their ChAdOx1 viral vector for TB (the same vector used in the AstraZeneca ronavax) in a prime-boost trial alongside MVA-85A (a tuberculosis vaccine which reached a Phase 2b trial back in 2010). MVA stands for Modified Vaccinia Virus Ankara, and the ‘85A’ bit refers to the ‘antigen’ (which in this case is the code for TB).
Several trials have employed this method. Although “the underlying mechanisms of the effectiveness of prime-boost strategy still remain poorly understood”, this ‘mixed modality’ approach might be something government puppets insist on doing as part of the global experiment. In January 2020, there was a phase I trial in the UK using ChAdOx1 85A as the prime and then MVA85A as the ‘boost’, in 42 healthy adults who’d already had a BCG vaccine. Most of them got flu-like symptoms, and there were issues with blood counts, such as lymphopaenia, as well as a case of shingles, but most adverse events were deemed unrelated, and therefore discounted.
One version of MVA, containing the S glycoprotein from MERS-CoV (the 2012 ‘outbreak’), was used to vaccinate mice in a lethal challenge experiment in 2015; the mice survived subsequent exposure to the disease, making this just one example of genetic vaccines being said to avoid causing disease enhancement, unlike their ‘conventional type’ predecessors.
Trials of previous vaccines by J&J for meningitis, RSV, Ebola, Prostate cancer, and Staph. aureus reached phase 1, whilst trials of vaccines for malaria, TB, HCV, HIV and ‘pandemic influenza’ reached phase 2. Apart from the rona, J&J is currently using the Ad26 platform in vaccines for HIV, respiratory syncytial virus, and Zika.
For a long time, corporate giants have worked hard to prepare for a ‘world re-set’ – all the technological mechanisms are in place to support full implementation of the United Nation’s oh-so-insincere SDGs. Now that they’ve developed things like digital IDs, drones, electric cars, and fake meat, we’re expected to buy them. Considering Big Pharma’s got a truck-load of highly unnatural products ready, it helps to see where the truck has come from and what’s on it.
The history of genetic vaccines adds context to the madness that’s landed us slap-bang in the bowels of the ronascam; subsequent articles will dive into this a bit more, then go on to describe some of the bizarre ingredients, as well as the harm they could do you, and the genetic/molecular pathways through which this can occur.
Image: April 5, 2017: Study volunteer receives inoculation at Redemption Hospital in Monrovia, Liberia, during the opening days of PREVAC, a Phase 2 Ebola vaccine trial in West Africa. Credit: NIAID/Wikimedia Commons
Also read Julie Beal’s previous chronicle of genetic vaccines HERE.
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