[VACCINEWatch]: Do vaccinated individuals ‘shed’ spike proteins and new COVID-19 strains?

By February 3, 2022 COVID-19, Vaccine

We came across this message on Telegram:

For context, the author of the message was replying to another individual who came across the term ‘shedding’, and asked if it means that the COVID-19 virus is “passed through air from vaccinated people to others”. The author of the message then states that “spike proteins are being shed” by vaccinated individuals.

The conversation about ‘shedding’ is not novel, and we came across another message which goes even further to state that the “original (virus) was a lie”, and that “subsequent strains came from shedding from the vaxxed”:

‘Vaccine shedding’ vs. ‘viral shedding’

Before we can go into whether or not there is any truth in the claim, we need to understand what the concept of ‘vaccine shedding’ is.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), vaccine shedding is the release or discharge of any of the vaccine components in or outside of the body. This can only occur when a vaccine contains a live weakened version of the virus. Some examples of vaccines that contain a live weakened version of a virus are vaccines against measles, mumps, chickenpox and shingles.

This should not be confused with ‘viral shedding’, in which an individual with COVID-19 releases the virus into the environment through breathing, sneezing or coughing, or through their faeces and urine. In fact, even after recovering from COVID-19, some can still have “non-infectious fragments of the virus”, which may still return a positive test result.

Going back to what we now know about ‘vaccine shedding’ and how it can only occur when a vaccine contains a live weakened version of the virus, it is important to note that none of the currently approved COVID-19 vaccines use a live weakened version of the virus. In Singapore, vaccines under the National Vaccination Programme (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Sinovac-CoronaVac) are either mRNA or inactivated vaccines.

The claim that ‘vaccine shedding’ is happening with COVID-19 vaccines has also been debunked by multiple sources, given how the theory has been making its rounds in multiple countries for quite a while now.

Therefore, it is false that ‘vaccine shedding’ is happening with COVID-19 vaccines.

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