The spike protein from Covid vaccination can persist in a person’s tissues and immune cells for months after vaccination and is associated with ongoing immune system inflammation and debilitating symptoms, a new study by U.S. researchers has found.
The study, currently in pre-print (not yet peer-reviewed), analysed blood samples from 50 vaccinated people who were suffering from persistent symptoms similar to those seen in Long Covid such as fatigue, brain fog and headache weeks or months after vaccination (an average of 105 days at time of study, ranging from 38 to 245 days). These samples were compared to blood samples from 35 vaccinated people who did not have such symptoms. None of the participants had had Covid, confirmed by antibody and T-cell tests.
The researchers found significantly elevated levels of spike protein in the blood immune cells of those suffering with symptoms similar to Long Covid post-vaccination compared with those without symptoms post-vaccination. This can be seen in the diagram below: the higher levels in the right-hand patient columns compared with the left-hand control columns signify higher levels of spike protein (S1) in two different types of immune cell.
In addition to elevated spike protein levels, the researchers found indicators of immune system inflammation in those with symptoms post-vaccination. Based on this they suggest a mechanism whereby the persisting spike protein in the immune cells triggers an inflammatory immune system response which causes the symptoms. The authors go into some detail about the particular biological pathways which could be involved.
The symptoms experienced post-vaccination were very similar to Long Covid symptoms post-infection, the authors note, save for not including shortness of breath and loss of smell and taste. In a previous study, published in Frontiers in Immunology, the same authors had performed the equivalent analysis on individuals experiencing Long Covid symptoms post-infection and found similarly elevated levels of spike protein in the immune cells and similar immune system inflammation. Noting that ongoing viral replication “may not be required for prolonged symptoms”, they conclude this supports their hypothesis of a common cause of the symptoms in both cases, namely the persistence of spike protein in immune cells triggering inflammation.
They add that spike protein persistence from vaccination appears to be a “major contributor” of symptoms similar to Long Covid post-vaccination, and further, that given the spike protein “alone delivered by vaccination can cause similar pathologic features”, that it may be a “major contributor” of Long Covid symptoms post-infection as well. In other words, Long Covid after infection may be being caused or prolonged by spike protein from the vaccine rather than the infection.
In the authors’ previous study they were silent on whether the samples came from vaccinated or unvaccinated individuals, meaning it remains open that they were actually picking up spike protein from the vaccines rather than infection. In that study the authors noted the spike protein identified was typically in the form of fragments, not whole virus particles, which is consistent with the possibility they in fact came from the vaccine.
The finding that spike protein can persist in the body for months following vaccination, apparently causing ongoing inflammation of the immune system and debilitating symptoms, is highly significant – and contrary to what the vaccine producers claimed would be the case. It suggests a possible mechanism for serious adverse events affecting the cardiovascular system, such as heart inflammation and blood clots, for some months after vaccination. In light of the high rate of deaths from cardiovascular causes in the last 12 months, the possibility that the vaccines may be involved should be investigated without delay.