I'd encourage everyone to read this recent paper and article on COVID-19 for themselves, but I want to highlight one of the biggest conclusions: the Spike Protein alone is enough to cause disease. This has many interesting wider implications.
To research the mechanism behind the disease response, these scientists created "pseudoviruses", essentially a crown of S proteins without the actual virus inside. They also exposed artery lining cells to S proteins alone, and in both cases the tissues were damaged.
This confirms that the S protein itself causes damage and inflammation. So what could this mean for the mechanism that current vaccines use, which involves getting our own cells to produce the S protein and mounting an immune response against those proteins?
A layman-friendly explanation on the details of how this works can be found here. So if S proteins can cause damage by themselves, can they cause damage when administered by vaccine?
First it is important to look at if the S protein coded for by the vaccines is sufficiently similar to the S protein in SARS-CoV-2. Pfizer, J&J, and Moderna all use a modified version of the S protein, which could influence how it behaves when interacting with tissues.
Before answering this question it is important to clarify what meaningful similarities in proteins look like. Protein function and how they interact with the body is determined by shape. A protein which folds in a sufficiently similar way to another will be treated similarly.
As a quick aside, this is part of how one can dispel the notion that the S protein is sufficiently similar to Syncytin-1 to cause an immune response - there is minimal amino acid homology and insufficient similarity in shape.
The modifications that have been added to the vaccine S protein are small, but important. I'll focus on the Pfizer modification here. The code for the amino acid sequence is the same save for the replacement of two amino acids.
It turns out, when not attached to a virus, the unsupported S protein folds into a different structure. This different structure would not teach our immune system what to do when faced with the properly folded version - rendering a vaccine coding for these proteins useless.
You can take a look at this in more detail in the article I posted about reverse engineering the Pfizer vaccine. The end conclusion though, is that the modifications serve to make sure the S protein in the vaccine is as close in structure to the Covid S protein as possible.
Moderna's vaccine, the sequence for which has also been recently published, appears to make the same change with two amino acids to preserve structure. It is worth noting that in Moderna's patent, they refer to variants with as little as 85% similarity to the Covid S protein.
I will now step into speculation, so keep this in mind. However, I believe that there is enough structural similarity between the S protein produced by these vaccines and the S protein of Covid that you could see similar disease effects as a result of vaccination.
Knowing that S proteins themselves cause disease effects provides a compelling explanation for why vaccine side effects are so brutal. Recipients may be getting a small aspect of the Covid disease experience, as a treat. No I'm not still bitter about how sick J&J made me.
Replication of the original study with the vaccine S protein is absolutely vital. Perhaps the variance Moderna's patent describes may change the interaction with the ACE2 receptor in the same way the Covid protein does, mitigating harm. Protein interactions are complex after all.
(To clarify since I didn't do so earlier - the mechanism by which the S protein causes damage is through binding with the ACE2 receptor, preventing proper signaling with mitochondria leading to mitochondrial damage)
However, I do not think that this outcome is all that likely, because if a protein is sufficiently structurally similar that it can trick the body's immune system, it is also structurally similar enough to trick the cell's receptors as well.
The reality is, these vaccines are already out, and their distribution vastly outpaces the ability for science to keep up with them.
The ideal vaccine protein product to train the immune system first wouldn't be a part of the disease effect's cause. Second, it would be a part of the virus not subject to heavy evolutionary pressure like the S protein is. Third, it would not be too similar to any host proteins.
Naturally there's more components, and I have some ideas as to why vaccine engineers chose to focus on the S protein despite knowing my second point. However, regardless if another vaccine is developed in the future or not, this is the vaccine we have right now.
What does this mean for vaccination efforts? First, even if the vaccines are causing partial disease effects, a SARS-CoV-2 infection proper will cause full disease effects, through higher numbers of S proteins and additional viral effects.
Vaccinations have proven, at the very least, to prevent the most severe effects which keeps more people out of the hospital. Functionally, it is better for people to have a weakened disease response and then become immune, than risk experiencing something stronger.
In terms of policy, you can compare this to cowpox vaccinations. Cowpox has some nasty effects on the body and using it as a vaccine did present risk to immunocompromised people. However, its use was still vital for eradicating smallpox.
If I am right that the vaccine causes disease effects, this does not invalidate the vaccine's use and importance. However, it is something that those taking it should be aware of, and it would be exceedingly reckless for scientists, doctors, and policymakers alike to ignore this.
Care for patients after they are vaccinated should be taken much more seriously. They are potentially in danger of harm from the epithelial effects stemming from the S protein's damage. Right now side effect reporting and aftercare is pitiful, without accountability.
Furthermore, if my theory is correct, those who are getting vaccinations should be made aware that the side effects they will experience may well be a lessened version of Covid's effects, and potentially subject to Covid's current mysteries. Finally, more research please!
That's the end of the thread, first thread like this ever, so feel free to ask questions or offer criticism. I'd be happy to provide more proof or details for anything brought up here.
Tacking this on as a bookend because I think it really sums up how... Hilariously bad this could be.

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