Debunking the claim that vaccines cause new COVID-19 variants

 Newswise
25-May-2021 3:00 PM EDT, by Newswise

Fact Check By: Craig Jones, Newswise

Truthfulness: False

Claim:

It is clear that the new variants are created by antibody-mediated selection due to the vaccination

Claim Publisher and Date: Luc Montagnier, a French virologist and recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Medicine on 2021-05-19

In an interview in the French documentary "Hold-Up," Luc Montagnier, a French virologist and recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Medicine for his discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), claimed that Covid-19 vaccines are creating new variants in various parts of the world. He believes that the ongoing vaccinations across the world is an ”enormous mistake.” ”The history books will show that because it is the vaccination that is creating the variants.” Multiple French social media posts that have been shared by thousands have also claimed that COVID-19 vaccines are causing variants of the virus to emerge. We find these claims to be false. There is no evidence the vaccines are creating more variants. In fact, most human vaccines have not been undermined by microbial evolution.

Variants of the SARS-COV-2 virus are created at random, through the mass spread of the virus.4 Vaccination is part of the solution for suppressing transmissions. Nearly all of the approved COVID vaccines used in humans prevent asymptomatic infection and spread.1

WHO’s Vaccines Explained series

When a virus is widely circulating in a population and causing many infections, the likelihood of the virus mutating increases. The more opportunities a virus has to spread, the more it replicates – and the more opportunities it has to undergo changes.

The variants that are currently most concern to scientists Include the UK's B.1.1.7 variants, South Africa's B.1.351 variants, Brazil's P.1 variants and India's B.1.617 variants. Some of these variants appear to be more infectious than the original Wuhan strain. Recent studies have found that antibody responses generated through natural infection to the original strain or via vaccination are less effective in neutralizing these variant strains.2 

According to the CDC, a growing body of evidence suggests that fully vaccinated people are less likely to have asymptomatic infection and potentially less likely to transmit SARS-CoV-2 to others.3 Stopping the spread of COVID means slowing mutations of the virus too. 

1. JAMA. 2021;325(13):1241-1243. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.3370

2. Scientists reveal structural details of how SARS-CoV-2 variants escape immune response

3. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/science/science-briefs/fully-vaccinated-people.html

4. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus...

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Released: 25-May-2021 3:00 PM EDT
Debunking the claim that vaccines cause new COVID-19 variants
Newswise

In an interview in the French documentary "Hold-Up," Luc Montagnier, a French virologist and recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Medicine for his discovery of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), claimed that Covid-19 vaccines are creating new variants in various parts of the world. He believes that the ongoing vaccinations across the world is an ”enormous mistake.” ”The history books will show that because it is the vaccination that is creating the variants.” Multiple French social media posts that have been shared by thousands have also claimed that COVID-19 vaccines are causing variants of the virus to emerge. We find these claims to be false. There is no evidence the vaccines are creating more variants.

Released: 21-May-2021 12:00 PM EDT
Are businesses violating HIPAA if they ask their patrons if they've been vaccinated? No.
Newswise

As business rework their mask requirements such as lifting face mask requirements for customers who are vaccinated against COVID-19, questions about medical privacy are back in the spotlight. The question of whether it's okay to ask a maskless patron if they've been vaccinated has come into focus. Vaccine opponents, including members of the U.S. Congress, are once again claiming that the HIPAA federal privacy law protects individuals from being asked about their vaccination status. We find this claim to be false.

Released: 7-May-2021 1:40 PM EDT
There is no evidence that vaccines could cause harm to people who have recovered from COVID-19
Newswise

An article published by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s anti-vaccination organization and widely shared on social media questions the need of vaccinating those who’ve already recovered from COVID-19. The article says there’s a "potential risk of harm, including death" in getting the vaccines. We report this claim as false. There is no evidence that vaccinating people who had previously had COVID is resulting in an increased risk of adverse events.

Released: 29-Apr-2021 1:05 PM EDT
The claim made by leaders of Miami school that vaccinated teachers can negatively affect non-vaccinated staff and students is completely false
Newswise

There is no evidence any vaccinated people may be transmitting something from their bodies to non-vaccinated people.

Newswise: Claims That Masks Are Irrelevant Put People at Risk
Released: 22-Apr-2021 4:05 PM EDT
Claims That Masks Are Irrelevant Put People at Risk
American Thoracic Society (ATS)

The claim that you don’t have to wear a mask after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine has been circulating on social media and told by conservative media pundits such as Tucker Carlson and Rep. Jim Jordan.

Released: 30-Mar-2021 2:40 PM EDT
Texan doctor baselessly claims that the mRNA vaccines aren’t actually vaccines at all
Newswise

A Texas doctor, in a widely shared video, falsely claims the vaccines don’t provide protection and that they’re actually “experimental gene therapy.”

Newswise: Opinion Piece on Lockdowns Misinterprets Data
Released: 24-Mar-2021 1:35 PM EDT
Opinion Piece on Lockdowns Misinterprets Data
American Thoracic Society (ATS)

A recent opinion piece in the NY Post ignores evidence supporting the effectiveness of lockdowns.

Released: 24-Mar-2021 9:20 AM EDT
The claim that lockdowns end more lives than they save is misleading
University of Bristol

Dr Howard H.Z. Thom of the University of Bristol says it is grossly misleading to attribute the 1 million excess deaths solely to response.

Released: 19-Mar-2021 2:00 PM EDT
The Claim That U.S. Has Seen a Surge in Hate Crimes Against Asian People During the COVID-19 Pandemic Is True
Newswise

A study published in March 2021 by California State University, San Bernardino’s Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism found that hate crimes reported to police departments in the 16 largest U.S. cities in 2020 increased by 149%.

Released: 4-Mar-2021 8:05 AM EST
COVID vaccines aren't 'gene therapy'
University of California, Irvine

Fact-checking a false claim about COVID-19 vaccines


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