German researchers claim to have figured out why some coronavirus vaccines cause blood clots, and that the vaccines might be adjusted to avoid the problem.
Two vaccinations, one from Oxford-AstraZeneca and the other from Johnson & Johnson, have been related to rare clotting abnormalities, especially in women under 50.
Out of 33 million shots, AstraZeneca’s has been connected to 309 clots and 56 deaths in the UK. Out of more than 10.4 million doses, the J&J single-dose vaccine has been associated with 28 illnesses in the United States.
The clots, which can form in the brain, are occurring in conjunction with thrombocytopenia, or unusually low platelet levels.
The difficulty, according to experts at Frankfurt’s Goethe-University and Ulm’s Helmholtz University, resides in the adenovirus vector, a common cold virus used to get both vaccines into the body.
According to the Financial Times, the vaccines can be modified to prevent the unusual adverse effect from occurring.
It comes as Ellie Peacock, an 18-year-old Australian student who developed clots after getting AstraZeneca’s vaccine, encouraged recipients to be mindful of and monitor any potential side effects yesterday.
She endured severe headaches and chest pains after her first injection on March 31, a week before the government warned under-50s against getting the vaccine, and was diagnosed with pneumonia before doctors discovered three blood clots in her lungs two months later.
Lauren Briggs, a mother of two from Connah’s Quay, North Wales, was nearly murdered by a ‘one in a million’ blood clot caused by her AstraZeneca Covid vaccine, but she advised others to obtain the vaccine.
Ms. Briggs, 32, experienced a variety of symptoms within days of receiving her vaccination, beginning with a ‘terrible headache’ and then discomfort in her lower body that felt like her leg was ‘exploding.’
Scientists believe that the immune system perceives the vaccine as a threat in some people and overproduces antibodies to combat it. These cause blood clots to form, which can be fatal if the clots migrate towards essential organs and cut off blood flow.
Because of the issue, some countries have decided not to use AstraZeneca’s vaccine, including Denmark, which decided not to use it in April. Norway and Austria followed suit later.
In other nations, it is only used by the elderly. Under-40s should be provided alternate vaccinations, according to UK health officials, because the risk of blood clots does not clearly outweigh the benefits.
The decision was taken because Covid cases were on the decline, implying that the danger of contracting the disease was minimal. Furthermore, younger adults have a low risk of becoming extremely ill from Covid.
The benefits of virus protection obviously outweigh any undesirable side effects for elderly people who are at a true risk of dying if they contract Covid, according to officials. The chance of forming clots is approximately one in 100,000.
The decision of some countries to discontinue using the vaccine, as well as criticisms of it, prompted a political controversy in Europe, with EU leaders requesting additional vaccine supplies while also stating it didn’t work and was hazardous.
Though real-world data show it works, German officials stated the jab didn’t work at all in individuals, and France’s Emmanuel Macron dubbed it “quasi-effective.”
After patients in the United States had clots, similar concerns arose concerning the Johnson & Johnson vaccination. In Europe, the jab was also age-restricted.
Both are assumed to be associated with clotting because they act in the same way – by attaching a portion of the coronavirus to a damaged common cold virus known as an adenovirus.
The Sputnik V vaccination from Russia works in the same way, although there have been no instances of it causing blood clots.
Clots could be created by the way vaccines enter the body, according to Dr. Rolf Marschalek, a biochemistry professor at Goethe University in Germany, who told the Financial Times.
According to the study, the issue is ‘totally absent’ in mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer’s and Moderna’s.
Dr. Marschalek believes that vaccines are delivered to the cell’s nucleus – a blob of DNA in the middle – rather than the fluid that works as a protein factory around it.
Dr Marschalek explained that bits of coronavirus proteins that reach into the nucleus can break apart, and the odd fragments are then ejected into the bloodstream, where they can cause clotting in a small number of people.
The first clots that caused concern were those that appeared in veins near the brains of young adults, a disorder known as CSVT (cerebral sinus venous thrombosis).
People have developed clots in different parts of their bodies since then, and they’re frequently associated with low platelet counts, which is uncommon because platelets are normally employed by the immune system to form clots.
People usually recover completely, and blockages are usually simple to repair if discovered early on, but if left untreated, they might cause strokes, heart attacks, or lung difficulties.
Dr. Marschalek and colleagues believe that if the genetic material in vaccines is altered such that it does not break apart inside the cell nucleus, the problem could be solved.
This could be done in the labs that make the vaccines, he said, and Johnson & Johnson has already asked the researchers for guidance on how to improve its own vaccine – but the research doesn’t say how.
Dr Marschalek told the Financial Times, “With the data we have in our hands, we can inform the corporations how to alter these sequences, coding for the spike protein in a way that prevents undesired splice reactions.”
After receiving the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, a 39-year-old British lady died in a Cypriot hospital after a blood clotting episode.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) will investigate the fatality, according to Charalambos Charilaou, a spokesperson for the state health services.
The woman, who was treated in the intensive care unit of Nicosia General Hospital, received the first dosage of the vaccination on May 6 in Paphos, a vacation town on the Mediterranean island’s western coast.
The woman, who has not been identified, began to have symptoms a few days later and died over the weekend.
The Cyprus Ministry of Health has launched an investigation to establish if the serious thrombotic incident’ was caused by the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Cyprus is also investigating four more cases of mild blood clotting problems, three of which occurred after an AstraZeneca shot and one after a Pfizer jab.
Due to very uncommon blood clots, some nations have restricted or removed AstraZeneca vaccines from national vaccination campaigns, despite the EMA’s assertion that the benefits outweigh the risks.
AstraZeneca is the driving force behind the vaccination campaign in Cyprus, where family doctors are permitted to deliver the vaccine to anybody over the age of 20.
A 39-year-old British woman died in a Cyprus hospital as a result of blood clotting after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine.
On May 6, she received the first dosage of the vaccination at Paphos, a vacation town on the Mediterranean island’s western coast.
The woman, who has not been identified, had symptoms days later, including headaches, fainting, and seizures, and died over the weekend.
The serious thrombotic incident’ was investigated by Cyprus health authorities to see if it was linked to the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Some European countries have discontinued using AstraZeneca’s vaccine entirely, while others, such as the United Kingdom, advise younger women to seek an alternative vaccine.
It comes after data revealed that an increasing number of people are developing blood clotting abnormalities after receiving their second dosage of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccination, despite scientists’ initial findings that the majority of cases were linked to the first.
People who received their booster dose by May 12 had 15 cases, up from six at the start of the month, according to the UK’s medical authority.
More than 9 million Britons have received two doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine, implying that the relatively rare clots affect one in 600,000 people.
Scientists told MailOnline that the highly unusual consequence was becoming more common in double-jabbed patients, which was ‘disappointing.’
The clots are occurring in conjunction with thrombocytopenia, a disorder characterized by unusually low platelet numbers.
Symptoms were milder and less frequent than after the first dose, according to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.
The MHRA has identified 294 cases of the clots in Britons who had received the first injection as of May 12, impacting around one in 80,000 people.
Because the conditions were discovered to be more common in young people, the British jab has been prohibited for use in people under the age of 40.
One of the government’s top scientific experts cautioned today that under-21s are more prone to contract the Indian Covid version.
Neil Ferguson, or ‘Professor Lockdown,’ claimed there was a ‘hint’ in the data suggesting younger people are more susceptible to infection with the mutant strain.
The SAGE epidemiologist stated it was “difficult” to identify whether it was a biological result of the virus developing but presented no evidence to back up his assertion.
He acknowledged that the results could have been affected by the seeding of infection’ at schools and universities.
However, another expert speaking on the Indian variant’s threat warned that tales of it spreading faster in children should be taken seriously because it’s the first symptom of a problem.
‘Often, if you wait too long for the appropriate evidence, it’s too late,’ said Professor Ravi Gupta, a microbiologist at Cambridge University. At a German media briefing today, he was joined by Professor Lockdown.
Professor Ferguson, speaking on the threat of the Indian variety to expectations of returning to normalcy next month, said there were indicators it was impacting children more than other strains.
‘There’s a clue in the data that under-21s are slightly more likely to get infected with this variant compared to other variants in recent weeks in the UK,’ he told a German briefing for science media.
‘Whether it reflects a change in biology or what’s known as founder effects and the context — people who brought the virus into the country and then seeded infection in specific institutions and universities — that’s impossible to say at the time.’
Professor Ferguson, on the other hand, gave no evidence to back up his assertion and underlined that there was no evidence that it caused more severe sickness in children.
Professor Gupta, speaking on the same subject, said: ‘I do believe we should take these stories [of it spreading more swiftly among the young] seriously because that’s the first clue that you’ve got a problem.’
‘It’s often too late if you wait too long for the correct data.’ Hopefully, the countries that are witnessing this will conduct a thorough investigation so that we can obtain that information.’