“The Omicron S-bearing virus robustly escapes vaccine-induced humoral immunity, mainly due to mutations in the receptor binding motif (RBM)”
These words will ring in minds of those in NIAID and CDC and everyone who pushed the spike-only vaccines.
Using the original SARS-CoV-2 variant modified to carry the Omicron variant spike protein, BU scientists have created a new virus, unknown to man, with new functions.
The virus proved to be 80% lethal in mice.
We already know that the spike protein has evolved substantially – so much so that a PCR primer site located in the spike-coding region failed, and so much that antibodies against Omicron do not prevent transmission against the extinct Wuhan-1 original variant.
DailyMail broke the story with a scathing report two days ago, and NIAID is scrambling to do what it can to protect its reputation, which is already in shambles due to the misinformation-prone messaging from its Director, Anthony Fauci.
The study, which is not peer-reviewed, allegedly is based on research – get this one – funded by NIAID – and NIAID disavows knowing the details of the research.
The authors’ conclusions of the study are that the evolutionary differences between Omicron BA.5 in the spike protein are not responsible for the attenuation of the virus’ pathogenicity. The authors make it clear that the differences in the spike protein are responsible for vaccine escape, implicating the vaccine as
Here’s the study’s abstract:
“The recently identified, globally predominant SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant (BA.1) is highly transmissible, even in fully vaccinated individuals, and causes attenuated disease compared with other major viral variants recognized to date1-7. The Omicron spike (S) protein, with an unusually large number of mutations, is considered the major driver of these phenotypes3,8. We generated chimeric recombinant SARS-CoV-2 encoding the S gene of Omicron in the backbone of an ancestral SARS-CoV-2 isolate and compared this virus with the naturally circulating Omicron variant. The Omicron S-bearing virus robustly escapes vaccine-induced humoral immunity, mainly due to mutations in the receptor binding motif (RBM), yet unlike naturally occurring Omicron, efficiently replicates in cell lines and primary-like distal lung cells. In K18-hACE2 mice, while Omicron causes mild, non-fatal infection, the Omicron S-carrying virus inflicts severe disease with a mortality rate of 80%. This indicates that while the vaccine escape of Omicron is defined by mutations in S, major determinants of viral pathogenicity reside outside of S.”
The spin on this to protect NIAID is astounding.
The Brink published a rebuttal outlining BU’s attempt to refute not only that the NIAID knew about their research, but then also that their research was not “gain of function”.
BU said that the research made the virus less dangerous, so it does not fall under the category of “gain of function”. In reality, it was unclear to the researchers whether they were venturing into “gain of function” research or not, as evidenced by the rebuttal:
Boston University’s statement on following National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) guidelines: “We fulfilled all required regulatory obligations and protocols. Following NIAID’s guidelines and protocols, we did not have an obligation to disclose this research for two reasons. The experiments reported in this manuscript were carried out with funds from Boston University. NIAID funding was acknowledged because it was used to help develop the tools and platforms that were used in this research; they did not fund this research directly. NIH funding was also acknowledged for a shared instrumentation grant that helped support the pathology studies. We believe that funding streams for tools do not require an obligation to report. Secondly, there was no gain of function with this research. If at any point there was evidence that the research was gaining function, under both NIAID and our own protocols we would immediately stop and report. All research at Boston University, whether funded by NIAID or not, follows this same protocol. We are in continued conversation with NIAID leadership and program officers.”
To determine if the study had gain-of-function aspects, let’s consider the study itself:
“(s)ubstituting the RBM of Omi-S with that of WA1 increased ND50 by 5.6-fold (p = 0.0003)”
The 50% neutralizing dilution (ND50) measure is a measure of antibody response by which the amount of virus measured was reduced by 50% (usually compared to virus controls).
But look at Extended Data Fig. 2:
“Importantly, 80% of animals infected with Omi-S also lost over 20% of their body weight by 9 dpi (Fig. 3a and Extended Data Fig. 2a). The evaluation of clinical scores (a cumulative measure of weight loss, abnormal respiration, aberrant appearance, reduced responsiveness, and altered behavior) also revealed a similar pattern; while Omicron-infected mice displayed little to no signs of clinical illness, the health of those infected with WT and Omi-S rapidly deteriorated, with the former inflicting a more severe disease (p = 0.0102) (Fig. 3b and Extended Data Fig. 2b).”
“The titer decreased at 4 dpi for WT- and Omi-S-infected mice, yet it showed an increasing trend for Omicron-infected animals, pointing to the possibility of mild but persistent infection by Omicron in K18-hACE2 mice.”
The scientists believe that if they reference the mortality of their hybrid relative to the mortality of Wuhan-1, it’s not gain-of-function research. Under this definition, as long as other, more dangerous viruses exist, as long as the lethality of your Frankenvirus is lower than “the most lethal”, it’s not gain-of-function research?
That is not going to wash, which is why NIAID is desperate to distance itself.
From an article on StatNews:
“Emily Erbelding, director of NIAID’s division of microbiology and infectious diseases, said the BU team’s original grant applications did not specify that the scientists wanted to do this precise work. Nor did the group make clear that it was doing experiments that might involve enhancing a pathogen of pandemic potential in the progress reports it provided to NIAID.”