Alzheimer and Covid vaccine

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How to stop the epidemic of false information that is undermining the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic? Rumors that messenger RNA vaccines can cause neurodegenerative diseases discourage some people from getting their injections.

More and more people are refusing to receive the Covid-19 vaccine after the spread of an unfounded theory about neurodegenerative diseases.

These rumors spread in particular on social networks such as Twitter, where we can read that "the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine would cause neurodegenerative diseases that would damage the brain in the long term such as Alzheimers and Lou Gehrigs disease according to a medical report." This tweet has been shared 759 times. This same theory can be found in Childrens Health Defense, Robert Kennedys organization. These statements, widely disseminated on social media, are slowing the wave of vaccination. But what is it really?

A theory supported by an anti-vaccine activist

In an attempt to verify this information, the Liberation journalists in charge of the Fake news section analyzed this scientific literature. The report in question, published on January 18 in the journal Microbiology & Infectious Diseases, is signed by the same author: Bart Classen. "In browsing Mr. Classens site and press releases, we see that for years he has been broadcasting a number of false claims about vaccines (links to autism, for example, repeatedly rejected by the scientific community), in particular a scientifically unfounded theory according to which they would cause diabetes ", you can read on the Liberation site.

No risk of prion vaccine contamination

In his report, the author of the study and American immunologist claims to have shown that the RNA in the vaccine can transform proteins into pathogenic prions, themselves causing neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimers or frontotemporal lobar degeneration. According to David Gorski, an American surgeon who specializes in debunking false scientific information, this is a retraining of the theories that vaccines cause prion disease.

"Prions are also implicated in bovine spongiform encephalitis, the famous mad cow disease, first identified in 1986. David Gorski explains that it is probably because some vaccines use cell lines containing fetal bovine serum that this theory was born. ". According to Dr. Gorski, "There is absolutely no risk of prion contamination from vaccines." A finding confirmed by Dr. Angela Rasmussen, a virologist affiliated with Georgetown University. "Bart Classens study has absolutely no scientific value," she explains in the USA Today columns.

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