Why flu vaccines don’t protect people for long

Why flu vaccines don’t protect people for long


Jon Cohen and commentaries by Robert Gorter, MD, PhD.


Aug. 22, 2020

flu vaccine

If flu vaccines made more bone marrow plasma cells (pictured here) that lived long lives, immunity would last longer: but so far, after decades of effort, these flu vaccines do not. (Gopal Murti/Science Source)

The annual influenza vaccine saves lives and spares many people from severe disease, which is why governments and employers promote and subsidize its use. But it’s hardly an ideal vaccine, offering so-so protection that wears off rapidly. A new, one-of-its-kind study, published today in Science, helps explain those shortcomings: A key cell type hidden in bone marrow that quickly kicks into activity after vaccination fades within a few months, researchers found. The discovery could lead to new strategies to increase the vaccine’s durability.

The best vaccines—such as the ones for measles, rubella, and diphtheria—provide almost 100% protection for life. Flu vaccines, however, often don’t exactly match the rapidly evolving and mutating influenza virus, so their effectiveness changes each year: In the United States between 2009 and 2019, it ranged from a low of 19% to a high of 60%. And protection wanes quickly: If you live in a temperate region of the world and receive the shot in the early fall, immunity can disappear before the end of that winter.

To better understand the durability problem, Rafi Ahmed, an immunologist at Emory University School of Medicine, homed in on a type of B cell that resides in the bone marrow and whose role Ahmed helped uncover in 1996. B cells make antibodies that can attach to and disable viruses. Ahmed focused on a type of B cell called bone marrow plasma cells (BMPCs), which continuously produce antibodies after an infection or vaccination. So-called memory B cells also produce antibodies and are created the same way, but in contrast to BMPCs, they do not steadily pump out the protective proteins. Instead, as their name implies, memory B cells that are trained to recognize a specific virus kick into gear only when they’re re-exposed to it. It takes them several days after an infection to produce high levels of antibodies—a disadvantage in influenza, which can cause disease rapidly.

To the surprise and disbelief of many, Ahmed’s group showed in 1996 that some BMPCs can live for many years, meaning they could, in theory, confer long-lasting immunity. Whether influenza vaccines trigger high levels of BMPCs and if so, whether the cells are the long-lived variety was a mystery, however.

Ahmed and colleagues repeatedly examined the bone marrow and blood of 53 volunteers aged between 20 and 45 years old in the weeks and months before and after they received influenza vaccines. (Some people participated over more than one flu season.) The study was no fun for the participants: Removing fluid from within a bone is a challenging and painful procedure that involves piercing the pelvic bone with a special needle. “The logistics … were very difficult, and I think nobody will ever try to do the same thing again,” Ahmed says.

Rino Rappuoli, chief scientist at GlaxoSmithKline Vaccines, says he knows of no other study that sampled bone marrow for vaccine research. “Rafi’s work is great and pioneering,” Rappuoli says.

The researchers found spikes of BMPCs specific for influenza 4 weeks after immunization. But after 1 year, the new cells were virtually gone. Rappuoli and others aren’t particularly surprised by this but welcome the evidence. “This finding tracks nicely with the observed rapidly waning (blood) antibody titers and decreasing protection in humans after getting the flu vaccine,” says Adam Wheatley, an immunologist at the University of Melbourne. “It’s a really nice piece of work.”

The study “helps define the landscape” of the flu vaccine’s poor durability, says Mark Slifka, an immunologist at Oregon National Primate Research Center who earned his Ph.D. with Ahmed more than 20 years ago but was not involved with this work. “They chipped away at the stone in terms of understanding why the immune response is short-lived,” Slifka says.

But Slifka thinks the BMPC population stimulated by vaccines likely has a small proportion of long-lived cells, undetected in this study that could offer more enduring protection. The way to boost their presence is to goose the system so that it makes more BMPCs overall, he says. One possible way to do this is with adjuvants, additives to vaccines that act as irritants, ramping up the immune response. It also may help to increase the amount of viral proteins in the vaccines, he says.

The first influenza vaccines, developed in the 1940s, used adjuvants. They contained killed flu viruses mixed it with a water-in-oil emulsion called “incomplete Freund’s.” But the adjuvant caused ulcers at the injection site, so it was dropped from later vaccines. To further reduce unwanted reactions, researchers also stopped injecting the entire killed virus, replacing it with only the surface proteins from the virus. The resultant vaccines had fewer viral proteins and no immune-boosting agents. These vaccines, used widely today, cause far fewer side effects—but they came at a steep cost, says Slifka, who last year published a review article that hammered in these points.

“We’ve damaged the immunogenicity and the durability of the response.”

But for the past 2 decades, improved adjuvants have found their way into licensed vaccines. A revamped influenza vaccine that has an oil-in-water adjuvant—the water shields the oil and makes it safer—has been used in Italy since 1997 and was approved by European and U.S. regulators in 2000 and 2015, respectively. But whether it’s able to trigger long-lasting BMPCs is unclear. No one in Ahmed’s study received this product—when the project began, it wasn’t even licensed in the United States—which is “a pity,” Rappuoli says.

“It’s totally crazy” that most commonly used influenza vaccines don’t include an adjuvant, Ahmed says. “I’m hoping that things will change in the influenza vaccine world, and 10 years from now, you will not be getting any non-adjuvanted vaccines. This has been going on for years. It’s hard to change the industry.”

Robert Gorter says:

“Currently, there are used approx. 28 adjuvants / additives in vaccines routinely used for establishing a better immune response. Especially since 1975, a variety of additives & adjuvants have been developed and applied but also these additives have major risks and side effects; including life-long damage and illness (various neurologic and auto-immune diseases).”

According to the U.S.A. CDC (Centers for Disease Control) vaccine additives page, all the following ingredients are routinely used as vaccine additives:

  • Aluminum – A light metal that causes dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. You should never inject yourself with aluminum.
  • Antibiotics – Chemicals that promote superbugs, which are deadly antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria that are killing tens of thousands of Americans every year.
  • Formaldehyde – A “pickling” chemical used to preserve cadavers. It’s highly toxic to the nervous system, causing blindness, brain damage and seizures. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services openly admits that formaldehyde causes cancer. You can see this yourself on the National Toxicology Program website, featuring its 12th Report on Carcinogens.

There, the formaldehyde Fact Sheet completely neglects to mention formaldehyde in vaccines. This is the “dirty little secret” of government and the vaccine industry. It does state, however, that “…formaldehyde causes myeloid leukemia, and rare cancers including sinonasal and nasopharyngeal cancer.”

  • Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) – A neurotoxic chemical called an “excitotoxin.” It causes brain neurons to be overexcited to the point of death. MSG is toxic even when consumed in foods, where it causes migraine headaches and endocrine system damage. You should NEVER inject MSG into your body. But that’s what health workers do when they inject you with vaccines.
  • Thimerosal – A methyl mercury compound that causes severe, permanent nervous system damage. Organic Mercury is highly toxic to the brain. One should never touch, swallow or inject mercury at any dose. There is no safe dose of mercury! Doctors and vaccine pushers LIE to you and say there is no mercury in vaccines. Even the CDC readily admits vaccine still contain mercury (thimerosal).

In addition, National Toxicology Programs admits in its own documents that:

  • Vaccinations “… produce small but measurable increases in blood and nerve tissue levels of organic mercury.”
  • “Thimerosal was found to cross easily the blood-brain and placenta barriers.”
  • The “…hazards of thimerosal include neurotoxicity and nephrotoxicity.” (This means brain and kidney toxicity.)
  • “…similar toxicological profiles between ethylmercury and methylmercury raise the possibility that neurotoxicity may also occur at low doses of thimerosal.”
  • “… there are no existing guidelines for safe exposure to ethylmercury, the metabolite of thimerosal.”
  • “…the assessment determined that the use of thimerosal as a preservative in vaccines might result in the intake of mercury during the first six months of life that exceeded recommended guidelines from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)…”
  • …”In the U.S., thimerosal is still present as preservative in some vaccines given to young children, as well as certain biological products recommended during pregnancy. Thimerosal remains a preservative in some vaccines administered to adolescents and adults. In addition, thimerosal continues to be used internationally as a vaccine preservative.”

The report then goes on to say that the FDA studies thimerosal and somehow found it to be perfectly safe. It also states that vaccine manufactures are “working” to remove thimerosal from vaccines, but in reality it’s still being manufactured right into the vaccines.

By the way, this report also reveals that the FDA requires preservatives like thimerosal only in so-called “multi-dose” vaccines — vials that contain more than one dose of the vaccine. Drug companies could, if they wanted to, produce “clean” single-dose vaccines without any mercury / thimerosal. But they choose not to because it’s more profitable to product mercury-containing multi-dose vaccines. As the report admits, “Preservatives are not required for products formulated in single-dose vials. Multidose vials are preferred by some physicians and health clinics because they are often less expensive per vaccine dose and require less storage space.”

So the reason why your child is being injected with vaccine boils down to health care offices making more money and saving shelf space!

Summary listed of all additives to make your child healthier……

* aluminum hydroxide

* aluminum phosphate

* ammonium sulfate

* amphotericin B

* animal tissues such as: pig’s blood, horse’s blood and / or rabbit /   monkey brain

* arginine hydrochloride

* dog kidney and / or monkey kidney

* dibasic potassium phosphate.

* chicken embryo, chicken egg and / or duck egg.

* calf (bovine) serum

* betapropiolactone

* fetal bovine serum

* formaldehyde

* formalin

* gelatin

* gentamicin sulfate

* glycerol

* human diploid cells (stem cells from aborted human fetal tissue)

* hydrocortisone

* hydrolyzed gelatin

* mercury, thimerosol / thimerosal, Merthiolate® as a preservative

* monosodium glutamate = sodium glutamate (MSG)

* monobasic potassium phosphate

* neomycin

* neomycin sulfate

* nonylphenol ethoxylate

* octylphenol ethoxylate

* octoxynol 10

* phenol red indicator

* phenoxyethanol (antifreeze)

* potassium chloride

* potassium diphosphate

* potassium monophosphate

* polymyxin B

* polysorbate 20

* polysorbate 80

* porcine (pig) pancreatic hydrolyzate of casein

* residues of MRC5 proteins (standard fibroblast stem cells)

* sodium deoxycholate

* sorbitol

* tri (n) butyl phosphate

* VERO cells, in a line of monkey kidney cells and

* washed red blood cells from sheep


Robert Gorter: “what is the bottom line?

  • The yearly advocated “flu shots” provide –at best- a protection between 16% en 60% and usually for a few months only;
  • Additives have been tried but none seem to be adding much to the efficacy of the vaccine but do increase short term and long term damages and risks to have an exalted immune response as it has been observed in patients who were infected with COVID-19 after a flu shot: practically all who ended up in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) with severe lung failure had been vaccinated against the flu before.
  • At times, a clinician gets the impression that certain vaccinations cause more damage than the disease could ever have done.


Source: Pediatrics Vol. 112 No. 6 December 2013, pp. 1394-1397

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