Discover more from Voice for Science and Solidarity by Geert Vanden Bossche
It is 5 past 12 !
Hello everyone. My name is Geert Vanden Bossche. I'm a seasoned vaccinologist with background in veterinary medicine, in biology, immunology, microbial diseases. I have been sending out video messages before and this is probably the last one I'm going to do. I will still write articles, I will still do interviews.
But this is my last video message. And the reason why I'm sending out this video message is because I can no longer stand it. For me, it has become unbearable to see how our health authorities, our experts and governments are still trying to make people believe that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and that they will be able to control the pandemic. In this presentation I made a few PowerPoint slides. I will show you that, as I have already been saying in the past, this is an unbelievable blunder. It is an insult to the science. It is unbelievable how scientists can still support this kind of strategy, whereas there is overwhelming evidence that the mass vaccination and the upcoming or updated omicron vaccination will just make things much, much worse. So, this news is sobering, but I have no choice. I have to share it because we have a passion for the truth and we believe that the truth will prevail.
But let me share my screen to show you some slides that I have been presenting to, again, trying to make my case or trying to make the case.
So what I'm saying in this first slide is that it is five past twelve. In fact, we are already too late to intervene in a way that could prevent humanitarian crisis. It is really my last and desperate call for action as Omicron is now causing a fast and large-scale immune escape in vaccines. So, this is simply accelerating. Immune escape is accelerating.
It is really escalating and for me it is really unbelievable. I cannot understand how it is possible that all these researchers that are studying these mutations and this mutational escape of the virus are not ringing the alarm bell.
So I don't know, I really don't know. Is it stupidity or is it really willful blindness? The scientists who are analyzing all these new mutations that are simply accumulating, we have seen them accumulating even over the last days, over the last weeks. For the scientists, this doesn't seem to be a reason for panic really. I mean, they see this fulminant immune escape as in fact a great opportunity for making publications.
So I call them the variant spotters. Seems like they are enjoying this because this is now providing so much food for publications in peer review journals. And it is really about molecular stamp collection, identifying all these mutations, doing the deep mutational scanning, the neutralization assays, the ACE2 binding essays. All this to study the impact of amino acid substitutions, mutations, recombinations on the receptor binding affinity (this is a proxy for infectiousness) and to see how these changes can escape from the potentially neutralizing antibodies.
But we can do an analysis of course, on sera, sera from people who got vaccinated a single time, or triple vaccinated, who got boosted, who got first infected and then vaccinated, who got first vaccinated and then had breakthrough infections, you name it. And of course, they have whole series of monoclonals that they can test and see to what the extent the virus can resist these monoclonal neutralizing antibodies, or even the antibody drug cocktails. And I think if you do all this, given the fact that we are on the brink of a humanitarian crisis, and you do all things by matter of surveillance and just to document and just to try to understand what happened without any predictive value, I think this is a complete nonsense. It is a waste of time. When humanity is on the brink of humanitarian crisis, we need to gather information that is able to predict with a high level of fidelity, with a high level of confidence what is going to happen.
And they are not able to do this simply because they don't see the forest for the trees. And why is this? And here comes the thing. It is simply because they don't understand the underlying immune interaction between the virus and the immune system. They all agree that the convergent evolution of what they call themselves worrisome variants and the resulting immune escape, that all this is due to immune selection pressure that is placed on the virus.
But on the other hand, none of these researchers dares to mention that this huge immune selection pressure that they're finding out about, and that has become more and more obvious as the vaccine coverage rates were growing, that this could be due maybe to the mass vaccination, and that the changes to the mutational landscape are now only escalating. All this is very, very clear to them. But nobody dares to mention that this huge immune selection pressure has to do with the mass vaccination. I cannot believe this. And it's even worse:
On the contrary, these scientists who are excelling in what I call molecular stamp collection, these are the guys who are now also advocating for the development of broad-spectrum vaccines and antibody drugs. So continuation, please, with the vaccine program. And so, when I'm talking about the molecular stamp collection, I'm showing here a graph.
They like to do representations, cartographic representations, where you see, of course, all the different variants, the family tree, genealogy tree, and then also the kind of monoclonals that are resistant to the BA2, BA4, -5 derived descendants of those variants, et cetera, et cetera. And you can expand this like almost every week, we have additional variants that spread faster, that are more resistant to the neutralizing antibodies, you name it. So, the stamp collection is eternal. And to an extent that we see now in many publications how people are documenting this and with all the ramifications from the different predecessor strains or variants, and we have to document all the different mutations in the amino acids and where you then see how they are classified as different sublineages, subvariants, et cetera, et cetera. And as a matter of fact, some people are already making fun of this because, you know, they want to put names on all these variants. Initially we had the alpha, Gamma, delta, etc.
So why not continue? Why not continue this kind of Greek names or nicknames as some people have been doing. So, this is a kind of list of some of the most recent variants. And I've highlighted these two in yellow because they are right now (but tomorrow it could be just a different situation) the two strains, or variants I should say, that grow fast, grow faster than the others and that spread more rapidly and that are also the most resistant towards the neutralizing antibodies. So, it's a BQ.1.1 and the XBB. The latter is even a recombination of two already existing subvariants. So, it's a lot of fun doing the stamp collection, obviously. But as I was saying, what does it bring us in terms of predictive value and where is this circus going to end?
And here comes the key name, which is immune refocusing. You hear about imprinting and memory cells that get reactivated, etc. But I will tell you that none of these molecular epidemiologists or these variant watchers are really understanding the immunology that is now driving the fulminant expansion of these immune escape variants. So, I will try to explain you what is the driving force behind this. And I can already tell you it's called immune refocusing.
And immune refocusing, before I explain the mechanism, the effect of immune refocusing is that it expedites immune escape in vaccines. So, it accelerates it. And how does it do that? It does that by reorienting the immune response to antigens or part of antigens which we sometimes call epitopes, reorienting the immune response to antigens that basically recall previously vaccine primed antibodies that have lower neutralizing capacity.
So in fact, the new refocusing is redirecting the new response to antigens that have a poor potential of inducing neutralizing antibodies. So how does that work? Well, let me first tell you when this happens. When does this happen? This happens when an immune system is confronted with an antigen in the presence of preexisting antibodies against a similar antigen that is however not identical.
That is one possibility. And the nicest example of that one is of course when we get breakthrough infections ... because when we have breakthrough infections, very clearly the preexisting antibodies were unable to prevent the new variant (so the new antigen) from causing an infection or even causing disease. So very clearly the preexisting antibodies are not recognizing the new antigen. So the immune system is confronting an antigen in the presence of preexisting antibodies that are not directed against that new antigen, but that are directed against a kind of similar antigen, namely for example, the Wuhan spike protein in the vaccine. In another situation, and it's very similar, the immune system is confronted with an antigen that has two different forms.
So it is in fact confronted with an antigen in the presence of antibodies that are directed against a different form of the same spike antigen. I don't know whether this has been proven, but it's very likely that this could be the case when the spike protein is produced by mRNA vaccines if the first spike protein comes in a different conformation, for example in a monomeric form; in that case, antibodies will be built against this monomeric form and then those antibodies will recognize the full-fledged spike protein in the circulation which however is trimeric. So you see it's the same antigen but a different form.
Antibodies have been formed against a monomeric spike and then those antibodies are confronted with the same antigen as a spike protein which has a different conformational state, namely the trimeric form. Especially for coronaviruses there have been lots of publications about, the transport and the presentation in virus-infected cells of the monomeric spike protein versus the trimeric. But apparently when it comes to mRNA vaccines and production of the spike protein in our own body cells, this doesn't seem to be important (to investigate). But it is likely that this happens especially with mRNA vaccines that first of all antibodies get elicited against the monomeric spike protein and those are of course not the antibodies that optimally recognize the circulating spike protein in the blood. So, what happens with immune refocusing?
Well, in regard of immune refocusing, I’m just going to present the example of a breakthrough infection, that was the first case I was talking about. Well, obviously the pre-existing antibodies from the vaccine do not recognize very well the new antigen. This is the variant, the antigen of the variant that caused a breakthrough infection. So, these antibodies cannot neutralize the virus, this is the spike protein with different epitopes, but it can of course bind to that epitope.
And by binding to this epitope, this preexisting vaccinal antibodies can hide this epitope. What happens when it hides this epitope is that other epitopes will benefit from that. In a sense, these other epitopes were previously outcompeted by these stronger neutralizing epitopes that have now been masked by the preexisting antibodies. So that is why we call these epitopes ‘subdominant’. They are most likely less exposed to the immune system than the stronger neutralizing antibodies.
So by hiding the stronger neutralizing epitopes, the subdominant epitopes now gain, immunologically speaking, a competitive advantage. However, these less exposed domains of spike are less potent inducers of neutralizing antibodies. Now, in case somebody has been vaccinated and that is what we are talking about in case of breakthrough infections, , these subdominant epitopes now gain a competitive advantage and will be able to recall previously primed B memory cells that are producing antibodies which have a lower neutralizing capacity. So the subdominant epitopes that gain a competitive advantage because the strongest neutralizing epitopes have now been hidden by the existing preexisting vaccinational antibodies, are now going to be able to recall in a pre-primed, i.e., a vaccine-primed individual, previously primed antibodies or memory cells that are producing antibodies that have less neutralizing capacity.
That is what I'm calling here the ‘hidden antigenic sin’. Why hidden? Because they are not promoting the stimulation, so to say, of the original vaccinal antibodies, despite reinfection. No, they are eliciting antibodies that were not previously elicited or that were only elicited in very, very low quantities because the antigens that were inducing them were dominated and outcompeted by the stronger neutralizing epitopes. So now we get to a situation where these subdominant epitopes are recalling antibodies with less neutralizing capacity.
Of course, because these antibodies have now lower neutralizing capacity, they can put this epitope under huge immune pressure. And because of that huge immune pressure that these antibodies with low neutralizing capacity exert on this subdominant epitopes immune escape will be promoted. It will promote natural selection of mutations of this epitope that are capable of escaping those antibodies. And of course, when these new mutants or new variants are now going to reinfect people, one will have a kind of similar situation as the one that I described above, where this preexisting antibodies (see arrow: these are now the preexisting antibodies) do not recognize very well this mutated epitope and they will hide it. And by hiding it, they will now favor the immunogenicity of other epitopes that have even lower potency to induce neutralizing antibodies.
And because these epitopes that have now lower potential capacity to induce neutralizing antibodies, they are of course going to be able to recall memory B cells that secrete antibodies that have even lower neutralizing capacity. Again, hidden antigenic sin. And because this lower neutralization capacity will exert huge pressure immune pressure on this epitope, this epitope will now easily evade these antibodies and mutations will be selected that can overcome the immune pressure exerted by these antibodies. And it continues, of course, like this. Because, again, now the situation is that these preexisting antibodies will not well recognize yet another antigen with even lower neutralizing capacity.
And this will lead in fact to a situation where breakthrough infections are causing an increased proportion of poorly neutralizing to even non neutralizing antibodies. And that is the system that will expedite and accelerate immune escape as never seen before. So, what is the conclusion of this? Well, in fact, the conclusion, if you think about this, is that the emerging omicron variants, by virtue of causing breakthrough infections, are putting themselves under growing immune pressure because they are recalling vaccine-induced antibodies with decreasing neutralizing capacity.
So, the Omicron variants themselves are eliciting immune responses by virtue of recalling vaccine-induced antibodies with decreasing neutralizing incapacity. The Omicron variants are themselves eliciting immune responses that will put immune pressure on the very variant that has caused the recall of these immune responses with low neutralizing capacity. So, you can already imagine that when these Omicron variants circulate and you get these breakthrough infections over and over again, that this will lead to a vicious circle which is going to escalate the rate of immune escape. It already explains, of course, why also updated vaccines, so to say adapted to Omicron, are a complete nonsense. This is an insult to the science. How can you be so stupid? It can only be if you have no clue about this mechanism of immune refocusing. And there are now many, many publications that describe the evolution of how the immune response is getting enriched in poorly neutralizing and non-neutralizing antibodies.
And all of these data are completely compatible with this theory of immune refocusing and hidden antigenic sin. So, because of that, we are seeing now converging receptor-binding domain mutations, so, mutations in the receptor binding domain that are now even enhancing the infectiousness of the virus. So, you first have poorly neutralizing antibodies that are promoted, so to say, or that are recalled, then they are less and less neutralizing, even non-neutralizing. And at the end, what is going on right now as we speak, is that we see in all these variants converging mutations in the receptor-binding domain that are now even enabling enhanced infectiousness of the virus.
These are typically the mutations that we now see that provided strains like the gamma and delta variant with enhanced infectiousness. So, as I was saying, it is a complete nonsense. And even the idea of the updated Omicron vaccines is just going to make things much, much worse for the reasons that I was sharing with you: the immune refocusing. So I cannot believe this, that there are professors, leaders of institutes for molecular biology, genetics, et cetera, et cetera who come up with the type of statements shown in this slide. And when I see their argumentation or their reasoning, what could possibly be the pluses and the minuses, the pros and cons of these Omicron-adapted vaccines, these updated vaccines, I mean, this is a shame.
None of this has anything to do with the science. This is not a scientific rational. There is no immunology in this. I mean, this is just, you know, the type of things they shared on Twitter, on all kinds of platforms and it is a complete nonsense. How can somebody, even being a professor, not understand the immune biology of the virus and start to make these kind of statements while making people believe that they are the experts and that what they are saying is something that is completely compatible in fact, with what is published in the literature. It is not!
I mean, this is completely worthless.
So what will be the consequences now of this enhanced immune escape in vaccines, how will these consequences of this enhanced immune escape evolve? And I would say to the fact checkers, please wait. If you want to vilify me or ridicule me, that's fine. But just wait for the next few weeks or months to see what is happening because I am going to predict what is happening.
I'm going to tell you what is going to happen because I do understand what is the driving force behind this fulminant explosion of Sars-Covid-2 variants that we are observing right now. This was the previous slide where I was saying this is now promoting receptor-binding domain mutations, enabling enhanced infectiousness. So we are now ending up with variants that are not only exhibiting enhanced resistance to neutralizing antibodies, it's not just neutralizing antibodies against the receptor-binding domain, but even to the epitopes within the N-terminal domain. And so this neutralization-resistant, more infectious variants are now triggering stimulation of low affinity, non-neutralizing polyreactive antibodies. And I'm writing an article where I expand on this and discuss this in more detail.
But basically these are the non-neutralizing polyreactive antibodies that are now putting suboptimal humoral pressure, immune pressure on viral virulence. So in other words, these are the non- neutralizing polyreactive antibodies that are so far still protecting vaccinees from severe disease, but they cannot protect them from disease, only from severe disease. They are putting tremendous pressure on viral virulence. And there is no doubt that the virus, as it has done all the time along, will also overcome yet another humoral immune pressure. For a virus this is just another humoral immune pressure as it has been seeing humoral immune pressures all along and has overcome them all along.
So if that happens, at that moment we will see that immune escape will cause what we call ‘antibody dependent – (because it's depending on those antibodies)- enhancement of severe disease’. And that is going to be a real catastrophe. If you look at the COVID-19 hospitalizations and you compare the unvaccinated versus the vaccinated. So, at some point the hospitalizations for the unvaccinated were in higher numbers than for the vaccinated. I mean, this evaluation has never been fair because I always the unvaccinated, they needed hospitalization because of underlying diseases and those underlying diseases were predisposing them of course to Covid-19 whereas the vaccinated, they needed hospitalization because of the vaccination, because of the side effects but because of the vaccination they were of course also protected against severe disease. So, it was never fair to compare unvaccinated and vaccinated just within hospitalized population. But nevertheless, so what we will see is that, and it is going on already, the numbers of the (hospitalized) unvaccinated will drop and will continue to drop, whereas for the (hospitalized) vaccinated, the number of hospitalizations will strongly increase (and it's already starting to increase), but it will have an exponential course. And of course people say, yeah, that's logical because most of the people are vaccinated. So, there's more people landing in hospitals that have severe disease.
Oh, wait a minute, we can do also the ratios, we can do the ratio of hospitalizations in the unvaccinated versus the vaccinated, right? And if we build that ratio and then we compare how this ratio is changing for example between T2 versus T1, i.e., an earlier time point. Well what we will see is that we will have a very dramatic decrease in this ratio, indicating -again that the rate of hospitalization for severe disease in the vaccinated will dramatically increase; we will be able to follow this evolution very easily. So what does it mean in fact for vaccinees? Well first of all we have already seen that they have enhanced susceptibility to infection and we first see this of course with the elderly, the people who have been vaccinated first, who have gotten all their booster shots: third, the fourth, the fifth, you name it. What we will see thereafter, and this is starting to begin right now, is that we will see enhanced susceptibility to COVID-19 disease, not whatever other disease but COVID-19 disease. Of course first in the elderly and then what will follow is enhanced susceptibility of these vaccinees to severe C-19 disease. And so how this will translate practically speaking is that vaccinees who get infected will get C-19 disease but upon reinfection the very same vaccinees will now get severe disease.
So, the situation will dramatically deteriorate. And you don't hear me saying that this will be the case for all of the vaccinees because some vaccinees have gotten much more injections, for example the elderly, than others. Some may have been injected with placebo, who knows? Others have been injected with mRNA vaccines where the mRNA got already largely degraded, others were simply maybe non-responders and so on. But this will definitely be a very clear trend and so I'm saying it's 5 past 12 in the highly vaccinated countries.
So, this is my desperate call for taking drastic and immediate action. So, what could we do? What could we still do? Well of course I was explaining we need to avoid this immune refocusing because this is just going to throw additional fuel on the fire because this is going to escalate and accelerate the immune escape in a direction that is really very detrimental, that will end up in enhanced virulence of a highly infectious virus. So, we cannot give new booster doses like Omicron-updated booster doses.
This is just going to make the situation much worse. Obviously we need to avoid vaccine breakthrough cases, breakthrough disease, because vaccine breakthrough disease is of course going to enable immune refocusing. So how can we avoid vaccine breakthrough disease? Of course, by diminishing the infection rate!
When we diminish the infection rate we avoid breakthrough diseases. We will avoid recall of these less to non-neutralizing antibodies. But we need to do better. We not only need to avoid vaccine breakthrough disease. We would need to reduce the infection level to an extent that we can even avoid vaccine breakthrough infection because as soon as we will have an infection the virus will break through the innate immune response and - in previously vaccine-primed individuals- automatically recall antibodies that are completely obsolete; antibodies that have no longer neutralizing capacity. So how can we do this? Of course, the infection rate can only be reduced via chemoprophylaxis with safe and effective antivirals that on top are broadly accessible and affordable. So, I don't care which antivirals but they need to comply with those criteria.
And we know that there are only very, very few drugs that have these properties that are really safe, can do the job, are effective, broadly accessible and affordable. And I tell you, I think this will need to be done in a prophylactic way. We will need to do it right now in highly vaccinated countries and start providing people massively with antivirals. And the reason I'm saying this is that preventing these vaccine breakthrough infections is almost like generating herd immunity. If we can avoid these vaccine breakthrough infections we can start to build herd immunity.
And please remember: the only way, the only way to control and terminate a pandemic is by generating herd immunity. So then, how long would we need to give these antivirals? Forever? No, we would not do this because that would also have a risk of, for example, inducing (drug) resistance. We would need to do this till we have achieved full herd community.
And so of course not everyone will take antivirals. But let's say you would reach, for example 70 or 80% of the vaccinees; then there is always a certain percentage of the population that did not get those antivirals despite the fact that they were vaccinated. Well, if we see that at a certain antiviral coverage rate in the vaccinees, we do no longer observe severe cases of COVID-19 disease, then we can reasonably conclude that we have reached herd immunity in a sense that the residual transmission rate is obviously low enough for preventing those who got vaccinated but didn't get the antivirals to not contract severe disease. Because remember, if the virus is completely resistant to any protective effect of the vaccine, then any kind of vaccine breakthrough infection would automatically lead to severe disease. So if that is no longer the case then you conclude reasonably that people who have not gotten the antivirals despite being vaccinated, that they are all of a sudden protected and then of course we can stop the antivirals in the vast majority of the remaining part of the vaccinated population.
Of course, for the unvaccinated it's much easier. They have trained their natural immunity. I keep saying the unvaccinated will do better and better, will ultimately become resistant to this virus. And the people who are probably best protected against Sars-Covid-2 and all the upcoming variants are those that are unvaccinated and live in highly vaccinated countries.
So, we have a choice.
Really? Yes, we have a choice. Please remember only herd immunity can terminate the pandemic. So, you have the choice. You can either reduce this transmission by enhancing the virulence in the vaccinees, what the virus tends to do. If the virulence of the virus increases in the vaccinees, yeah, then of course you are going to have plenty of vaccinees who do no longer transmit. Ev-en if they don't die, they will at least develop severe disease and, therefore, l be hospitalized; they will be out of society and this will dramatically diminish the transmission rate. Do we want to let this happen given the high risk of death, of mortality, or severe morbidity? The only alternative is to provide these people with antivirals, antiviral chemoprophylaxis.
These are the only two options that we have to diminish this fulminant transmission rate in the population that we see right now and that could lead to this miraculous target that was in fact the purpose of the mass vaccination campaign, which miserably failed, and which is herd immunity.
So, what about the side effects and all post mortality rates in the vaccinees that we have seen have been going up? It's appalling if you see the rates and the kind of side effects, the kind of increase in excess deaths, etc. I have no words to describe it; really. It's appalling, it is unacceptable, it blows me away.
But nevertheless, whether you believe me or not, I'm always saying: if one puts all these side effects and all this excess death rate together, it is still going to be peanuts compared to the kind of losses that we are going to face when the virus evolves as I'm predicting, and which I'm 200% certain of, that it will evolve in that way.
And what about early treatment? Well, that is why I'm recommending to do chemoprophylaxis even before people get infected, because there is a high risk that early treatment will be ‘too little’ and that it will come ‘too late’. Why? Because I was just telling you that the virus is now evolving not only to become completely resistant to neutralizing antibodies, but also to become more infectious.
It's basically collecting all these successful mutations that enabled gamma and delta, et cetera, to become more infectious. So, the infection will be so fast and since there is no protection against severe, disease anymore and that we will have antibody-dependent enhancement of severe disease, tmy fear is that early treatment will come too late.
And what about the updated Omicron adapted vaccine? Well, I told you that in the unvaccinated it will enable immune refocusing and in the vaccinees, it will enhance it, so it will make the situation dramatically worse.
Here is one of the slides that I presented at the recent Better Way conference in Vienna; it shows how I see the current situation. Two parties are obviously fighting for a bone, for the same bone; there are the underdogs, I consider myself being part of that club so to say, where you have people that have a passion for the truth, that are independent critical thinkers and that strongly believe that we as human beings are just part of a big environment with other living beings in harmony with our environment. The principle and the concept of One Health and where we have an obligation to solidarity, right? In difficult times we have to hold together. That we help each other no matter whether somebody is vaccinated or unvaccinated. And then you have the other party who is now in charge, so to say, the stakeholders of the mass vaccination and the technocracy and that are, of course heavily supported by the media and that continue to propagate the narrative and that is causing a lot of, well, I call it ‘herd’ psychosis instead of a ‘mass formation’ psychosis. Why do I call it herd psychosis?
Because it nicely contrasts with herd immunity. I'm saying these two parties are fighting for the same bone where the third party, the third dog is running away with it. And so what is happening is that what will end this mass formation psychosis, the ‘herd’ psychosis, is the lack of herd immunity. The lack of herd immunity will eventually stop the herd psychosis because the lack of herd immunity will give, we call this in French 'carte blanche' to the virus. The virus, if there is no herd immunity, can do whatever it wants and will overcome the kind of ridiculous immune pressure that we are trying to put on it.
It will escape. And the winning party is not going to be the technocrats, it's not, let's say, the megalomania of mankind, but it's simply the biology. And these experts, these scientists have forgotten about biology. They are blinded by technologies, whether it's for diagnostics, whether it's for surveillance, whether it's for therapeutic purposes, whether it's for preventive purposes. They have forgotten about the essentials of biology.
And that is also why I'm saying, with regard to the COVID-19 battle, the country or the continent that will win is Africa. Because they will build herd immunity. So, with that, as I was saying, my desperate last video message to call on people who are in charge to still intervene in a way that we can limit the losses and the kind of humanitarian crisis that I think we are now really, really facing very closely. And so with that, I wish you, all of you, strength and courage and I sincerely hope that we will survive this humanitarian crisis in dignity, with integrity and thanks to a community spirit, as Robert Malone was also saying. Thank you.