Lazy eyes listen
by Dr. Perry Brimah M.D., M.S. Twitter: @DrPerryBrimah
Long haul post-vaccine syndrome deals with a variety of symptoms that have been reported post Covid-19 vaccine. Some patients are reported to have presented with symptoms which resemble acute Covid-19 infections and others have presented with symptoms seen in patients suffering from Long haul Covid. Long haul post-vaccine syndrome may present in patients several months after taking Covid vaccine shots. According to leading physicians dealing with the syndrome, it is manageable and is treated similar to Long haul Covid. The suspected culprit in both syndromes is the ‘spike protein.’
Covid Virus Spike Protein
Covid-19 virus’ pathogenicity is courtesy of its spike protein. Upon entrance into the body, the spike protein attaches to ACE2 (angiotensin converting enzyme 2) receptors in the cell membranes (Pillay, 2020). ACE2 receptors of epithelial cells lining the airways are a first target of the virus upon inhalation. Upon attachment, the spike protein gets activated and changes from a ‘pre-fusion’ shape to a ‘post-fusion’ state where it is like a spear that pokes through the cell membrane and allows the viral genetic material entrance to your cells to replicate.
Vaccine Technology and the Spike Protein
All current vaccines introduce the spike protein in the recipient. Oxford/AstraZeneca and Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) use ‘vectors’, J&J uses adenovirus type 26 (Ad26) as its vector, while AstraZeneca uses a chimpanzee adenovirus to introduce the spike protein. Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines introduce mRNA which is a sort of pre-protein. This mRNA is then read by your cells and translated into S1 and modified spike proteins.
While Oxford/AZ introduces the same exact spike protein the virus uses, Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech and J&J make the body produce a modified spike protein which has the addition of two amino acids (these are the building blocks of proteins), which modify the spike protein so it stays stuck in the ‘pre-fusion’ state and does not switch to the ‘post-fusion’ state which can penetrate the cell. This modification enhances the degree of neutralizing antibody production by your immune system as antibodies that can fight the Covid virus need to recognize the spike protein in the state it is before it has changed and entered cells. This is one of the reasons for the greater efficacy of these vaccines over Oxford/AZ. J&J and AstraZeneca are DNA vaccines. They (via the vector) deliver DNA into your cells which your cells read (transcribe) and write (translate) into spike proteins.
Novavax vaccine soon to enter the US market uses recombinant protein technology to generate the spike protein using moth cells. This is given with an adjuvant to boost the immune response, made from tree bark. It jumps the processes of DNA vaccines like J&J and mRNA vaccines like Moderna, delivering the end ‘spike protein’ product pre-made. Like Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech and Janssen J&J, Novavax vaccines give the modified spike protein sequence that stabilizes the spike protein into the pre-fusion conformation, discouraging cell penetration.
A plant-based vaccine by Medicago that uses “virus-like particles” (VLPs), has entered phase III testing and may soon be an option. This vaccine developed in Canada delivers what is like a covid virus empty shell, with the spikes but no infectious genetic material within.
Long Haul Covid
Long haul covid or Long-COVID or COVID long-haulers according to a new review can present with as many as 55 long term symptoms. The most common of which are “fatigue (58%), headache (44%), attention disorder (27%), hair loss (25%), and dyspnea (24%)…Diseases such as stroke and diabetes mellitus were also present.” Psychiatric problems like dementia and insomnia are also included. Smell and taste deficiency may persist as also cough and lung abnormalities. Autoimmune problems where the body fights itself is also part of this plethora of presentations. Weight loss, palpitations, renal failure, mood disorders, throat pain and sputum, myocarditis, arrhythmia, OCD, intermittent fever, digestive problems are some more.
The precise cause of Long-COVID and Long-Post-Vaccine is being investigated but it may be due to organ damage or persistent autoimmune or inflammatory damage after the infection. Another recent study found Epstein Bar virus reactivated in 73% of long haulers and blamed this for the chronic fatigue, raynaud’s phenomenon and other related symptoms.
“We found over 73 percent of COVID-19 patients who were experiencing long COVID symptoms were also positive for EBV reactivation.”https://www.sciencealert.com/mounting-evidence-suggests-many-covid-19-long-haulers-are-co-infected-with-epstein-barr
Dr. Bruce Patterson, a pioneer in figuring out Covid and Long haul, believes that a sub optimal immune response to the covid infection caused T immune cells to get exhausted and a particular type of “non-classical” monocyte cell moved in and caused some of the damage.
“With the T, and perhaps B-cells, at least somewhat out of action, the immune system threw monocytes into the breach. It was the monocytes that caused the lung damage sometimes found in acute COVID – and which Patterson et al. believe are causing long COVID.”https://www.healthrising.org/blog/2021/07/21/patterson-cracked-long-covid/
Dr. Patterson and team believe that these “non classical” monocytes that act as trash-cleaners could actually be pro-inflammatory releasing dangerous cytokines and cause damage to the body which presents as the Long haul Covid syndrome. Attached to the covid spike proteins, he postulates that these monocytes may also attack blood vessels and cause some of the long haul symptoms.
“These types of monocytes have often been thought to be anti-inflammatory, but recent studies show that they can, in some situations, produce pro-inflammatory cytokines. They’re mostly involved in “trash cleanup”, and the antiviral response.”https://www.healthrising.org/blog/2021/07/21/patterson-cracked-long-covid/
Patterson and team reported that CCL5/RANTES made by these monocytes was upregulated in 80% of long haulers.
The spike proteins from the coronavirus infection are believed to be the culprits behind the Long covid.
Spike Protein Changes Genes
Scientists have also reported that spike proteins may induce changes to people’s genes. Scientists from Texas Tech University described that spike proteins may cause changes in the way victims’ genes are expressed and that this may lead to the symptoms in Long-COVID.
“Results from a new cell study at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, US, suggest that the SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) protein can bring about long-term gene expression changes. The findings could help explain why some COVID-19 patients experience symptoms such as shortness of breath and dizziness long after clearing the infection, a condition known as long COVID.
“We found that exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 S protein alone was enough to change baseline gene expression in airway cells,” said Nicholas Evans, one of the researchers. “This suggests that symptoms seen in patients may initially result from the S protein interacting with the cells directly.””https://www.drugtargetreview.com/news/90224/gene-changes-caused-by-spike-protein-could-explain-long-covid/
The study titled “Lung Time No See”: SARS-Cov-2 Spike Protein Changes Genetic Expression in Human Primary Bronchial Epithelial Cells After Recovery” is published in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology section of the FASEB journal.
Link to Long Haul Post-Vaccine Syndrome
The new concern is the similarity between Long haul post-vaccine syndrome and Long haul Covid. As Dr. Patterson described on the Dr. Bean interview, the symptoms of Long haul post-vaxx and Long COVID are essentially the same at times. From his review of as many as 200 patients presenting with this problem, Long haul post-vaxx syndrome also sometimes looks like an acute infection of Covid-19.
The plausible explanation on why these two follow identical patterns is the toxicity of the spike protein, the wild type that comes on the virus and also the modified type in vaccines which usually does not enter cells but may trigger autoimmune reactions, genetic changes and other responses or effects. The toxic effects of the spike protein on Covid virus is being studied for its various roles in the etiology of acute Covid and Long haul.
The modified spike proteins in Moderna, Pfizer and J&J and other vaccines and the wild-type in Oxford/AZ vaccines are likely to be responsible for the triggering of Long haul post-vaccine syndrome and may also be responsible for Long-COVID via genetic changes as discussed above and also a possible “non-classical” monocyte activation pathway, which may also be gene expression triggered.
It is plausible that candidates with lower immunities face more adverse reactions and are at greater risk of Long haul post-vaccine syndrome because it takes longer for their immune system to kick off and wash out the spike proteins produced in the body, post vaccine. Studies should investigate any relationship between Long haul post-vaccine and immune compromise.
Of the various vaccines, AstraZeneca distributed in Africa and the rest of the poorer third world is the worst for many reasons including the fact that it delivers the wild-type unmodified spike protein which has the capacity to transform to the ‘post-fusion’ state and enter the cell and as such has the potential to cause more gene modification or other side effects.
Animal studies have found toxic effects of spike proteins.
“…those animal studies where Spike protein was produced by a pseudovirus, or the S1 subunit was administered directly. Both of these caused pathology in the animals all by itself, without coronavirus itself being present.”https://blogs.sciencemag.org/pipeline/archives/2021/06/15/the-novavax-vaccine-data-and-spike-proteins-in-general
Derek Lowe writes in Science Mag.
In the recent study published in Oxford Medical journal, assays detected the S1 protein in 11 of 13 patients for about 15 days, and thereafter the assays detected the spike protein, which Derek Lowe of Science Mag attributed to a later breakdown of cells that had produced this protein and were presenting it, in vaccinated patients.
Some have postulated that the body cells keep making some spike proteins after vaccination period. This is not proven and also while it is assumed the body with a robust immune system clears out the spike proteins after vaccination, exactly how long they persist for and what effects they may have are yet to be fully understood.
It is noted that to confirm the S1 and spike protein in these candidates was not from prior Covid infection, the scientists assayed for the “N” protein, which would be present if the patient had been infected with Covid.
Dr. Patterson discussed his capacity to treat Long haul Covid-19 and Long haul post-Vaccine syndrome in similar fashion.
Watch Dr. Patterson Discuss Long Haul Post-Vaccine Syndrome on Dr. Bean
Dr. Thomas E. Levy, MD, JD writes in OrthoMolecular that “depending on the cell types to which such spike proteins bind, a wide variety of diseases with autoimmune qualities can result.” He recommends treating both syndromes the same way with Vitamin C, Ivermectin, Quercetin and other agents.
“long-haul COVID syndrome likely represents a low-grade unresolved smoldering COVID infection with the same kind of spike protein persistence and clinical impact as is seen in many individuals after their COVID vaccinations (Mendelson et al., 2020; Aucott and Rebman, 2021; Raveendran, 2021).”http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v17n15.shtml
He further postulates an effect of the spike protein on the ACE2 receptor which has roles in essential pathways that protect blood vessels and other vital physiological processes.
“By itself, the disruption of ACE2 receptor function in so many areas of the body has resulted in an array of different side effects (Ashraf et al., 2021).” Dr Levy writes.
Texas Tech University described the dangerous gene-modifying effects of the spike protein as being long-lived and leading to genetic inflammatory changes even after exposure.
“The researchers found that cultured human airway cells exposed to both low and high concentrations of purified S protein showed differences in gene expression that remained even after the cells recovered from the exposure. The top genes included ones related to inflammatory response.”
Damned if you Do, Damned if you Don’t
Indeed the body is a very sensitive system of organs and an over-flood of any substance may cause temporary or long term effects. Long COVID and Long post-vaccine syndrome are both freshly unfolding concerns with the spike protein as common denominator, and are both being studied and will be for a long time.
Dr. Perry Brimah is a Medical doctor, published medical researcher and a molecular biologist. He writes from New York.