Last week, ImmunityBio received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to begin human trials of its COVID-19 vaccine, which uses Ad5 as a vector. The first trial will take place in Newport Beach, California, but Patrick Soon-Shiong, the company’s CEO, says he also hopes to test it in South Africa, where he grew up and went to medical school.
He calls the STEP study results “very, very fuzzy” and stresses that ImmunityBio’s Ad5 has four deleted genes that reduce the immune responses it triggers. “It’s 90% muted,” he says.
ImmunityBio is discussing the risks with scientists and regulators in South Africa of a trial there to test its modified Ad5 COVID-19 vaccine. The informed consent process for that proposed study would tell participants about potential risks given the previous STEP and Phambili results.
Soon-Shiong emphasizes that his company’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine, unlike every other candidate that uses an adenovirus vector, presents two different SARS-CoV-2 genes and might therefore offer more protection from infection or disease. Why only test this in wealthy enclaves of Southern California, he asks? “Why not South Africa? Why not for the underserved people of the world?” (ER: Such generosity …)
Researchers Warn COVID-19 Vaccines May Cause HIV Infection
Covid-19 vaccines currently in development could increase the risk of acquiring HIV, warned a group of researchers in the The Lancet medical journal, potentially leading to an increase in infections.
The researchers warn of a “cautionary tale” from efforts to create an HIV vaccine over a decade ago, where a promising vaccine candidate actually increased the risk of some men catching the virus.
The vaccine made use of a modified virus — called adenovirus 5 (Ad5) — as a vector to transport some of HIV’s genetic material into the body.
Ad5 is used as a vector in some Covid-19 vaccines — Science identifies four such candidates that are currently undergoing clinical trials in various countries around the world, including the U.S., with two in large scale phase 3 trials ongoing in Russia and Pakistan.
The researchers stressed the need to understand the role Ad5 might play in increasing the risks of HIV in vulnerable populations before developing and deploying vaccines using the vector, adding that informed consent documents should reflect the “considerable literature” on the risk of HIV acquisition with Ad5 vectors.
As GreatGameIndia reported, recently Australia scrapped a billion dollar coronavirus vaccine agreement after several trial participants tested HIV positive.
Even Australian vaccine scientist Nikolai Petrovsky had warned the government about the risk of including HIV in a vaccine months before the $1billion deal was signed.
As GreatGameIndia reported earlier, in February a group of Indian scientists discovered that Coronavirus was engineered with AIDS like insertions. The study concluded that it was unlikely for a virus to have acquired such unique insertions naturally in a short duration of time.
Although the study was retracted after it attracted heavy criticism from experts on social media, Luc Montagnier, the Nobel Prize winning French virologist himself confirmed the conclusions of the study.
The study concluded that it is because of these 4 new AIDS like insertions in Coronavirus that the virus jumped to humans, originally known only to infect animals.
These proteins are critical for the viruses to identify and latch on to their host cells and for viral assembly. Since surface proteins are responsible for host tropism, changes in these proteins imply a change in host specificity of the virus. According to reports from China, there has been a gain of host specificity in case 2019-nCoV as the virus was originally known to infect animals and not humans but after the mutations, it has gained tropism to humans as well.
The study gives credence to GreatGameIndia‘s earlier reports on how Coronavirus was engineered in a lab and weaponized. It has now been revealed through emails obtained via public records requests that the “natural origin of Coronavirus” was an orchestrated myth.
Emails obtained by U.S. Right to Know show that a statement in The Lancet authored by 27 prominent public health scientists condemning “conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin” was organized by employees of EcoHealth Alliance, a non-profit group that has received millions of dollars of U.S. taxpayer funding to genetically manipulate coronaviruses with scientists at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The emails show that EcoHealth Alliance President Peter Daszak drafted The Lancet statement, and that he intended it to “not be identifiable as coming from any one organization or person” but rather to be seen as “simply a letter from leading scientists”. Daszak wrote that he wanted “to avoid the appearance of a political statement”.
Meanwhile, China has started using AIDS drugs for Coronavirus treatment. China is using AbbVie Inc’s HIV drugs as an ad-hoc treatment for pneumonia caused by the novel coronavirus while the global search for a cure continues.
For latest updates on the outbreak check out our Coronavirus Coverage.
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GreatGameIndia is a journal on Geopolitics and International Relations. Get to know the Geopolitical threats India is facing in our exclusive book India in Cognitive Dissonance.
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