Lazy eyes listen
A new peer-reviewed Stanford University Department of Pathology study published in Cell and funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and other institutions suggests that recipients of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for COVID were found to have at least as much spike protein in their blood as unvaccinated people who were infected by the virus.
Questions About Spike Protein
The biodistribution of mRNA-based COVID vaccine has become a longstanding issue for researchers and especially for patients claiming vaccine injuries. Among the main issues raised by skeptics of mRNA-based COVID vaccines is the behavior of the spike protein antigen, which some researchers claim is cytotoxic.
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Plasma Compared Across Different Cohort Groups
The researchers compared several batches of plasma from different patient groups. The research hers took plasma from 530 hospitalized patients with moderate to severe COVID symptoms was compared to plasma from 87 patients with “mostly mild” symptoms, to plasma from 196 vaccinated Mongolian patients and to plasma taken from 37 “healthy” individuals prior to the pandemic (as a control group).
Finally, the researchers also examined the saliva of 20 healthy individuals.
Lymph Node Biopsies Also Compared
The researchers also took lymph node biopsies from mammograms – seven from patients after they had two doses of the Pfizer COVID vaccine, three from patients were unvaccinated and seven from patients who died with COVID symptoms, which they compared to a control group of biopsies taken from deceased patients prior to the pandemic.
Spike Protein Levels in Vaccinated Individuals’ Blood Equal to that of Infected People
The researchers determined that spike protein was present in the vaccinated individuals in their lymph nodes up to two weeks after vaccination.
“We find that BNT162b2 vaccination produces IgG responses to spike and RBD at concentrations as high as those of severely ill COVID-19 patients and follows a similar time course,” the researchers wrote. “Unlike infection, which stimulates robust but short-lived IgM and IgA responses, vaccination shows a pronounced bias for IgG production even at early time points.”
Spike Persists for Days, Weeks in Vaccinated Patients’ Blood
The researchers also found that within 1-2 days of vaccination 96 percent of patients had a median of 47 picograms of spike protein per milliliter of blood and as high as 174 pg/mL. Infected COVID patients with acute symptoms are known to have a median of 70 pg of spike protein per mL of blood.
A week after vaccination 63 percent of patients had detectable levels of spike protein in the blood – a median of 1.7 pg/mL.
“We detected spike antigen in 96% of vaccinees in plasma collected 1–2 days after the prime injection, with antigen levels reaching as high as 174 pg/mL,” the authors wrote. “The range of spike antigen concentrations in the blood of vaccinees at this early time point largely overlaps with the range of spike antigen concentrations reported in plasma in a study of acute infection although a small number of infected individuals had higher concentrations in the ng/mL range. At later time points after vaccination, the concentrations of spike antigen in blood quickly decrease although spike is still detectable in plasma in 63% of vaccinees 1 week after the first dose.”
“Window Period” Masks Persistence of Spike Protein
Patients who took a booster shot had no detectable levels of spike protein in their blood after 21 days, according to the paper. But the researchers concluded that at the time of the second or booster shots patients’ immune systems produced antibodies that bind with the spike protein antigen and reduced the effectiveness of tests during this “window period.”
“Together, our results are consistent with spike-specific antibodies blocking the detection of the antigen in antigen capture-based assays,” the authors wrote.
The authors suggest that spike protein still resides in patients’ blood – possibly as long as 28 days after vaccination –but it is undetectable with current antigen test kits.
Biodistribution, Quantity, and Persistence of Spike Among Many mRNA Vaccine Unknowns
“The biodistribution, quantity, and persistence of vaccine mRNA and spike antigen after vaccination and viral antigens after SARS-CoV-2 infection are incompletely understood but are likely to be major determinants of immune responses,” the authors wrote.