ADE, asymptomatically infected individuals, cross-reactivity vs. cross-protection, Dr. Bhakdi, Dr. Geert Vanden Bossche, fulminant propagation of the delta variant, herd immunity
[Norm’s note: not to be overlooked in the context of Vandeen Bossche’s critique of Bhakdi (hat tip to @jjcouey for the following link) ===> Unbiased Screens Show CD8+ T Cells of COVID-19 Patients Recognize Shared Epitopes in SARS-CoV-2 that Largely Reside outside the Spike Protein]
Source: Geert Vanden Bossche (DVM, PHD)
Response to Dr. Bhakdi
I herewith wanted to react to a recent video posted by Dr. Bhakdi[:] (https://evidencenotfear.com/proof-that-puts-an-end-to-the-sars-cov-2-narrative-professor-sucharit-bhakdi-oracle-films/).
I was quite stunned about the statements he made and could not believe that this had allegedly been published. Hence, I consulted the publications Dr. Bhakdi has been referring to in his presentation (you’ll find them in the article that accompanies the video). My contribution attached explains why his viewpoint in regard of herd immunity and protection against variants is highly questionable. Given his background and credentials, I am very surprised at his conclusions. It’s certainly not that I cannot refrain from criticizing but if we’re not going to stick to the science, we’re going to lose our precious credibility.
I am sure many of you have seen Dr. Bhakdi’s presentation. As much as I’d like to confirm his position, I cannot agree with his interpretation. Dr. Bhakdi is basically claiming that because of previous exposure to common cold viruses we have immune memory cells that can be recalled upon exposure to Sars-CoV-2 and protect us! This is not true! While there is no doubt that there is some cross-reactivity between immune responses to some spike(S)-derived epitopes on beta coronaviruses (CoVs), these immune responses are not cross-PROTECTIVE.
Dr. Bhakdi is confusing all along cross-reactivity (which basically means that antibodies (Abs) or T cells induced by one CoV can BIND similar [conserved] epitopes on some other CoVs) and cross-protection. However, immune RECOGNITION does not equal immune PROTECTION. None of the publications Dr. Bhakdi is referring to has analyzed or claims cross-PROTECTION elicited by other CoVs. Again, Abs that bind to Sars-CoV-2 do not necessarily neutralize the virus and prevent it from entering the cell. Of course, many people will have a history of common cold infection and hence may rapidly recall some spike-directed Abs (i.e., towards epitopes that are shared with Sars-CoV-2) upon exposure to Sars-CoV-2 or after immunization with Sars-CoV-2-derived antigens. However, this doesn’t mean at all that these rapidly rising IgG and IgA Dr. Bhakdi is referring to will neutralize Sars-CoV-2 and protect you from Covid-19 disease! In addition, Sars-CoV-2-induced Abs were only found to cross-react with 2 out of the 4 common cold CoVs (i.e., only for beta coronavirus HKU1 and OC43) and the cross-reactivity was ‘much lower than that observed for the remaining CoV epitopes’.
Furthermore, his statement that people who have built immunity against CoV are automatically protected against all Sars-CoV-2 variants is not true either for exactly the same reasons (i.e., Abs that bind to variants do not necessarily neutralize them and could even be at risk of causing Ab-dependent enhancement of disease; ADE).
Last but not least, the publication of the Danish which Dr. Bhakdi is referring to does not truly provide information on asymptomatically infected individuals. The category labelled as ‘asymptomatic/ mild symptoms’ refers to individuals who recovered (inclusion criterion!) from disease, even if it was mild (outpatient, no limitation of daily activities). How could truly asymptomatically infected people have been eligible according to at least one of the inclusion criteria: ‘Full recovery from acute Covid-19 illness?’ Asymptomatically infected individuals do not develop long-lived or mature anti-S Abs and have not been reported to develop memory B cells or CYTOTOXIC memory T cells. Consequently, previously asymptomatically infected people (i.e, the majority of the population) cannot rely on ACQUIRED immunity for protection against infection or disease, respectively! In the Danish study at least nine individuals were unable to fully neutralize viral infection. If truly asymptomatic individuals were included, it would be reasonable to assume that those nine individuals figured among the group (n= 17) classified as asymptomatic/ mild. In addition, it is stated in the discussion that ‘some rare individuals have no detectable immunological memory to Sars-CoV-2’.
The same criticism also applies to the CD8+ T cell responses reported in this study: To my knowledge, there is no evidence that Sars-CoV-2-induced CD8+ T cells provide cross-protection from common cold viruses or vice versa and this wasn’t even part of this investigation. Cross-reactivity of Sars-CoV-2-CD8+ T cells with spike protein from MERS or Sars-CoV-1 was reported in this study but pre-existing immunity of study participants to these viruses is unlikely and can, therefore, not provide for a potential protective recall upon exposure to Sars-CoV-2.
So, with all my respect for Dr. Bhakdi, the conclusion that herd immunity would already be established and would simply need to be recalled upon exposure to Sars-CoV-2 is not correct. By the way, if this were true, we would not currently be witnessing a fulminant propagation of the delta variant in several countries. I agree , of course, that mass vaccination should immediately stop but not because we already reached herd immunity!!
A reply to Geert Vanden Bossche:
Then why are vaccinated ppl getting the virus and dying in increasingly large numbers ?
Who signs your paychecks Dr Bossche ?
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Norman Pilon said:
I don’t know if, as Bobby Rajesh Malhotra suggests, Dr. Bossche is ‘compromised.’ In my opinion, it is to be expected that different specialists will have different and competing opinions about a set of shared empirical observations. Scientific research is inherently controversial and provisional. That Bossche and Bhakdi may not see eye to eye is no discredit to either.
Bossche’s explanation for what is being observed in terms of the emergence of variants is, it is true, fundamentally at odds with that of Bhakdi: the former sees the current fulmination of the Delta variant as an instance of viral escape that remains potentially virulent, whereas Bhakdi sees it as the outcome of a normal course of events, i.e., viruses naturally evolve toward becoming more infectious if also less harmful.
Both believe that the vaccines should be paused. Bossche would like to see a pause because he believes that a mass vaccination campaign in the midst of a pandemic can only spawn the emergence of variants that will escape the neutralizing effects of the vaccines being used, much in the same way that overprescribing antibiotics favors the emergence of drug resistant bacteria. Bhakdi wants to see the termination of mRNA vaccinations because they are dangerous and really have nothing very useful to confer in terms of immunity in the face of a disease that for the population taken as a whole is mostly benign.
For Bossche, the vaccines threaten to produce more virulent strains of SARS-CoV; for Bhakdi, the vaccines threaten injury without providing any real benefit because SARS-CoV-2 and its variants do not represent anything really capable of overwhelming natural immunity.
For Bossche, in other words, we continue to find ourselves in the midst of a concerning and potentially dangerous epidemic, the flames of which are being fanned by the mass vaccination campaign; whereas for Bhakdi, the pandemic is, as it has always been, more hysteria than reality, and to all intents and purposes already at an end.
Bossche’s position, then, is objectively less of a threat to the mainstream propaganda narrative about the reality of the pandemic than is Bhakdi’s position. This helps to explain Malhotra’s insinuation that Bossche is controlled opposition. He may be right.
On the other hand, Bossche may sincerely be advancing an alternative take on what this so-called pandemic is really all about. If what he advances can be interpreted as aligning with establishment interests, propagandistically speaking, that may in fact be purely and only coincidental.
Anyway, that’s my read of this post and the relationship of the elements that I have herein juxtaposed.
That is an excellent summary of Bossche’s position (versus Bhakdi), Norman. Thank you. As Bossche says at the beginning of his paper, he has put his neck (reputation) on the line, and has received only SILENCE in return (no support from any of his colleagues – opposition or otherwise). So, no, I do not think he is controlled opposition. Quite the opposite, in fact. “Silence” (complete suppression by mainstream media, academia, politica) is the cardinal mark that he is saying something the power elite do not want heard.
Click to access Public_health_emergency_of_international_concert_Geert_Vanden_Bossche.01.pdf
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Elizabeth Williams said:
I had Covid19 last year
I never gave it to my immediate family
I am currently now working with POST vaccinated POSITIVE Covid HOSPICE patients with active symptoms who have not gone to the hospital. My Vaccinated 25yr old daughter contracted covid with symptoms and subsequently my 19yr old daughter (with symptoms) and my husband (with symptoms) all became infected. However, I have been tested daily, sometimes twice, and I remain Negative and Asymptomatic.
I believe in T cell immunity.. I therefore conclude that an asymptomatic negative covid person cannot be a Carrier!! If this was so, My family and friends would have contracted Covid19 from Me Several Times this past year and a half!!
I have more to say about my personal Covid19 experiences regarding urgent cares, treatments!!! Our people are dying because they are being prevented from receiving treatments!! Why is This Happening???
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West Coast Patriot said:
I look at the math. I don’t care about how many people are positive, I only care about how many people in the population die. The math doesn’t show me that an actual pandemic exists. If we look at the chances of catching Covid-19, that leads to hospitalization, that in turn leads to death, at this time since the start, 0.25% of the population have succumbed. The flu has been mostly non-existent. Why? In 2019 records show that the flu was responsible for 1.7% of the deaths of the population. I believe flu deaths were reported as Covid deaths for monetary gain.
Another mathematical fact is the average age of Covid death is 78 and the life expectancy of humans today is 78. Why is that in such a terrible worldwide pandemic, which, the chance worldwide of contracting, then dying of Covid-19 is around 0.06%
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Norman Pilon said:
Another, Dr. Laurent Toubiana, points out that at the height of the Covid “Pandemic,” 140/100,000 individuals per week were being hospitalized “with” Covid in France. In a typical season of influenza — deadlier than Covid and more indiscriminate — 600/100,000 (or more) individuals per week are hospitalized. Of What “pandemic” is there, therefore, to speak?
You can find Toubiana’s assertion between the 26:40 and 27:30 time marks of the following panel discussion: