Miss a day, miss a lot. Subscribe to The Defender's Top News of the Day. It's free.
More evidence that Pfizer deliberately concealed from regulators the presence of the simian virus 40 (SV40) gene promoter and other genetic sequences and contaminants in its COVID-19 vaccine surfaced last week in a new video.
The video followed recent confirmation by Health Canada that Pfizer failed to disclose the SV40 sequence, violating transparency rules.
Steve Kirsch, founder of the Vaccine Safety Research Foundation, hosted the video panel. Panelists included Kevin McKernan, the genomics scientist who first identified the contamination in the vaccines, Dr. Byram Bridle, a vaccinologist from the University of Guelph in Canada and Chris Martenson, Ph.D., an economic researcher and founder and CEO of Peak Prosperity.
“If Health Canada wants to restore faith, they have to immediately recall this product,” Bridle said.
“Nobody’s calling for the stoppage of these vaccines because the experts say, ‘There’s nothing to see here,’” Kirsch said.
McKernan’s testing — confirmed by “lots of other labs,” according to Bridle — revealed that COVID-19 mRNA vaccines from both Pfizer and Moderna contain bacterial plasmid DNA contamination.
McKernan said the plasmid DNA likely originates from the manufacturing process, where DNA plasmids from E. coli bacteria are used to generate the spike protein mRNA. Though it was supposed to be fully removed, DNA sequencing of vaccine vial contents shows remnants persist.
Both the plasmid DNA “backbone” and specific gene sequences have been detected, according to McKernan. The bacterial backbone itself could cause unintended immune reactions. For example, lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a component of the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria like E. coli, is a known endotoxin, according to immunologist, biologist and biochemist Jessica Rose, Ph.D. LPS can, in sufficient quantities, cause septic shock.
Other contaminants include dsRNA or double-stranded RNA, McKernan said. This is formed during bacterial transcription of the plasmid during manufacturing. The human immune system identifies dsRNA as a sign of viral infection, which can trigger inflammatory cytokine production.
McKernan also found other foreign proteins, for example, those coding for antibiotic resistance or replication.
In a CHD.TV conversation last week with Children’s Health Defense (CHD) President Mary Holland and Brian Hooker, Ph.D., CHD’s senior director of science and research, McKernan said Pfizer tried to get rid of the extra DNA by “chewing it up with an enzyme [Deoxyribonuclease or DNase],” but that it didn’t work, McKernan speculated, because of the N1-methylpseudouridine (often referred to as “pseudouridine”) used in mRNA vaccines.
Pseudouridine is the artificial nucleotide base used to stabilize mRNA. Katalin Karikó, Ph.D., and Drew Weissman, M.D., Ph.D., made this discovery for which, along with their development of the lipid nanoparticle (LNP) encapsulation technology, the Nobel committee awarded them the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine earlier this month.
However, plasmid DNA also contains functional gene sequences like promoters that can drive genetic expression, according to Bridle. The SV40 promoter is known to induce primary brain and bone cancers, malignant mesothelioma and lymphomas in laboratory animals. This sequence was never disclosed to regulators like Health Canada, Bridle said.
The SV40 promoter also facilitates the nuclear entry of foreign DNA, heightening the chance of integration into the human genome, McKernan said.
“SV40 is a well-published tool for gene therapy. If you want to get DNA into the nucleus, this is the shuttle that you use to get it done,” said McKernan in the World Council for Health panel earlier this month.
During the same panel, toxicologist Dr. Janci Chunn Lindsay, executive editor of the Journal of Toxicology Current Research, called SV40 a “super promoter,” saying that SV40 is “great at driving gene expression and if that should sit above an oncogene, of course you could have an explosion of an amplification in a cancer gene.”
“Health Canada … has confirmed … that it [SV40] is a bioactive genetic sequence.” Bridle said, “which means that it can do things in the body. And they can’t definitively … rule out the potential for harm.”
“The next thing they should be doing is investigating and finding out what the heck is going on,” Kirsch said.
“Yeah, I’m not holding my breath that the government’s going to run and do this,” McKernan said.
Vaccine DNA could reach the fetus
McKernan suggested that the vaccine’s DNA contamination could be transferred from a pregnant mother to her fetus.
“I would bet it’s going into the child either through the lipid nanoparticle, or if it’s even naked in the blood, there’s probably some exchange there,” he said.
He pointed out that doctors no longer do amnios (amniocentesis, pulling blood samples directly from the amniotic sac surrounding the fetus) — a potentially dangerous procedure — “because they can sequence kids through the mother’s bloodstream.”
“So there’s known communication between mother and child here,” McKernan said, “and I would bet on this these LNPs getting there.”
All the panelists agreed this was a major concern.
“So if we had a CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] scientist on this call who would defend that, ‘Yes, it was the right thing to do to give this vaccine to pregnant women’ — what argument could they possibly use in light of what you just said?” Kirsch asked.
McKernan pointed out the $400 million royalty payment Moderna made to the National Institutes of Health and other researchers from the sale of their mRNA vaccine means they are conflicted organizations.
“They’re getting directly funded by the companies they regulate,” he said. “So none of those are going to come to the table and give us an honest answer. They’re going to come and say, ‘Safe and effective’ and ‘The virus is really dangerous.’”
Bridle said, “They were looking at pregnant women and the CDC is very upset because their cutting-edge data right now show that uptake of other vaccines by pregnant women is plummeting.”
Unknown long strand of RNA also present in vaccine
McKernan raised another mysterious inclusion in the vaccines: a stretch of RNA over 1,200 amino acids long — approximately the same length as the spike protein sequence — automatically detected by the SnapGene program.
“[There] is a very long, unexpected open reading frame [ORF] … an entire start codon to stop codon of a gene that runs the opposite direction of the spike protein on Pfizer’s vaccine. This would have been a major alarm bell if they [regulators] just loaded the vector into SnapGene and looked at this.”
McKernan noted other researchers have identified the same sequence — for example, Beaudoin et al. in their February 2022 Frontiers In Immunology paper, “Are There Hidden Genes in DNA/RNA Vaccines?”
“That’s another bioactive molecule that should have stuck out to any regulator who would put this into SnapGene and opened this,” McKernan said. “They would say, ‘All right, there’s SV40, they didn’t tell us about that, there’s an F1 origin that makes single-stranded DNA, they didn’t tell us about that.’”
Martenson asked, “Would the bacteria have read that and created RNA?”
McKernan responded that the 72-base-pair SV40 sequence is a bidirectional promoter and that it “will make an RNA that goes this long,” but, he said, “Will the ribosomes read it? Because we don’t know if there’s a Kozak consensus sequence anywhere in here.”
The Kozak consensus sequence is a specific sequence of nucleotides that helps the ribosomes — the cellular machinery responsible for protein synthesis — identify the start codon of an RNA sequence and initiate the translation process to produce proteins.
The ribosomal entry sites “are hard to bioinformatically predict,” McKernan said, “But either way, even if you chop all this stuff up … you’re going to end up getting these little open reading frames that are likely to … get integrated and have a short peptide that’s non-human that could get displayed in cells.”
McKernan added, “This is a [red] flag. You don’t want to have the opposite strand be fully coding because it’s just it’s more noise in the system. So it creates risk.”
He pointed out that the Moderna vaccines don’t have this sequence and that regulators should have asked Pfizer, “Are these necessary? What’s the point?”
“No one knows what the hell this is!” McKernan wrote in his Substack. “NCBI BLASTP [protein identification database] finds nothing. It’s not human and if expressed, [it] will be attacked by the immune system.”
However, a different protein database, UniProt, returned some possible candidates. “Many of the hits [from the ORF sequence] are to proteins found in Silk, Fibroin and collagen,” McKernan wrote.
Some of the article commenters speculated that the fibrous blood clots surgeons are pulling out of people’s arteries may be a result of the mysterious ORF sequence.
One commenter posted a link to a paper in Nature Communications about spidroin, a spider silk protein that can form amyloid-like fibril-based hydrogels, and to another paper in the journal PLOS ONE discussing how spidroin creates fiber meshes that can be used to engineer cardiac tissue.
Evidence of deliberate cover-up
Perhaps most alarming are revelations suggesting Pfizer intentionally hid the presence of the SV40 promoter from regulators. This deception implicates Pfizer in actively covering up a significant contamination issue with foreseeable risks.
The smoking gun is from Pfizer documents provided to regulators detailing the plasmid DNA sequence used to manufacture its vaccine. Pfizer omitted any label or mention of the SV40 region in the diagrams it submitted. Yet the raw DNA sequence data it submitted contained the SV40 promoter.
The expert panel highlighted this selective annotation as clear evidence of intentional concealment, not an accidental oversight.
Standard molecular biology software like SnapGene would have automatically labeled the SV40 promoter when analyzing the sequence, according to McKernan. Pfizer would have had to take deliberate action to scrub mention of it from all written and visual descriptions provided to regulators, he said.
“They submitted the sequence as a data file, so they [regulators] have a computer file sitting there with the sequence they could see,” Bridle said.
McKernan said, “People don’t go into plasmids by hand anymore and annotate these things. They put them in tools like SnapGene … [and], like the [SV40] sequence, it paints all of this stuff on there. So I would have to actively go and delete this stuff from SnapGene and then give it to the FDA [U.S. Food and Drug Administration].”
In a Substack post, McKernan described how to download a free trial of SnapGene to run Pfizer’s sequence file, and where the SV40 genes should be indicated on the circular sequence map:
“You’d have to actually go and delete the information to get rid of this stuff,” McKernan said. “So there’s no way in my mind that they that they [would go] ‘Oops forgot about this!’ … Any annotation program painted this and someone had to actively go and delete it.”
Because regulators like Health Canada require disclosure of any functional genetic elements present in submissions, Pfizer was obligated to identify the SV40 promoter proactively yet chose to hide it instead.
“Health Canada has also confirmed that that was not disclosed to them by Pfizer,” Bridle said. “And finally they’ve confirmed that that is against their rules.”
“They were afraid of this,” McKernan said. “You don’t go about annotating a plasmid with all the detail of the antibiotic resistance gene, the T7 promoter, the spike protein, the cut site they used … all of these details except the most material piece, which is the SV40 promoter that’s active in a million cells.”
👀 Kevin McKernan & Bryam Bridle on Why Pfizer Didn’t Annotate the SV40 Promoter in Their Regulatory Submissions
“The material they have to the EMA…annotated everything in the plasmid except the SV40 region…To me, it’s clear someone hid something…People don’t go into… pic.twitter.com/J61Fr5G72H
— Chief Nerd (@TheChiefNerd) October 27, 2023
Kirsch said, “The very first thing that Health Canada should have done is hauled Pfizer in and said, ‘How did the SV40 promoter get deleted from those charts that you gave us? How do you explain that?’”
“Nobody’s asking the question, right? Congress isn’t asking it. Health Canada is not asking it,” he added.
“The regulators [are] letting Pfizer submit their sequence and then they’re letting them submit their map of the sequence and then you’re just trusting them?” Bridle asked. “Where’s the policing?”
According to the panelists, neither regulators nor mainstream media have confronted Pfizer about its willful deception. No competent, impartial investigation has yet been launched.
‘You deserve to be’ vaccine-hesitant
The panelists discussed the incompetence of the adverse event monitoring process, the fraud in the clinical trial reporting, where Pfizer failed to report a 3.7 times higher cardiac death rate for the vaccine group and how it reported fewer deaths than should have occurred naturally.
Bridle blamed the regulators for the growing “vaccine hesitancy”:
“This stuff keeps accumulating … all these risks, all these harms, all of these misdeeds or mistakes — whichever one they are because if it’s the latter, then it shows that our regulatory agencies are completely incompetent and incapable of properly regulating these types of products. …
“Pfizer, Moderna are crying foul now because nobody will take … their shots anymore … and they’re losing their billions of profit. But worse, we’re seeing uptake of all the other vaccines … plummeting. …
“Maybe they have to start waking up and recognizing that when you have a product … as crappy as this … that the ‘misinformation gurus’ are the ones who have destroyed the field of vaccinology and they’re the ones responsible for the skyrocketing vaccine hesitancy.
“I say to anybody who’s vaccine-hesitant right now: you deserve to be, and you should be. The onus now is on our regulatory agencies to earn our trust back.”