A Half-Million Sharks To Be Killed for Covid-19 Vaccine
According to conservationists and wildlife experts, the plan to vaccinate the global population against COVID-19 will have a devastating environmental impact, as one of the vaccine ingredients, squalene, is made from shark liver oil.
To satisfy a global supply of squalene-containing vaccines, an estimated half-million sharks would have to be slaughtered. At present, five COVID-19 vaccine candidates are using squalene as an adjuvant to boost the immune response to the vaccine and elicit higher antibody titers.1,2,3
Added to the more than 3 million sharks already killed for their livers each year, the added demand could push certain shark species, such as gulper and basking sharks that are particularly rich in squalene, to the brink of extinction.4 According to the New Zealand Herald:5
“British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline uses shark squalene in its adjuvant, which is used in flu vaccines. In May, GSK said it would manufacture a billion doses of the adjuvant for potential use in COVID-19 vaccines.
About 3,000 sharks are required to make 1 ton of squalene. Estimates from California-based group Shark Allies suggest that immunizing everyone in the world with one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine containing squalene would require about 250,000 sharks, depending on the quantities used. This doubles to half a million if two doses are required, as researchers say is likely.”
Conservationists Call for Ban on Shark-Derived Squalene
The conservationist group Shark Allies6 has launched a Change.org petition7 calling for a ban on shark-derived squalene in COVID-19 vaccines. As noted in the petition, which is addressed to several regulatory agencies around the world, including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the British Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, the European Medicines Agency and the National Medical Products Administration in China, as well as all vaccine makers:8
“The supply chain has never been tested at the scale that a coronavirus vaccine would demand. There is also very little quality control and transparency in the shark squalene industry. In a nutshell, exploiting sharks for a key vaccine ingredient that can be derived from more sustainable and reliable non-animal alternatives is a detrimental and destructive approach.”
Shark Allies points out that shark liver squalene has no “magical” properties that cannot be replaced by other, more sustainable botanical sources such as yeast, algae, olive oil, palm oil, amaranth oil and wheat germ oil.9,10
At least one company has developed a synthetic version of the adjuvant,11,12 made from fermented sugar cane rather than shark liver, but while that would safeguard sharks, it opens yet other questions surrounding safety.
No synthetic squalene is currently approved for use in vaccines, but the Silicon Valley company Amryis, which has been producing synthetic squalene for the cosmetics industry, is now trying to get the product approved by the FDA for use in vaccines, and it’s already in negotiations with three vaccine makers.13
What Is Squalene?
Squalene, a hydrocarbon oil, is used as an adjuvant in some vaccines. One commonly used squalene-based adjuvant, MF59, is an emulsion formulated with squalene, polysorbate 80, sorbitan trioleate, trisodium citrate dehydrate, citric acid monohydrate and water.14 As noted in a 2014 paper,15 “The individual components of the MF59 adjuvant are not immunostimulatory, but the emulsion is.”
The purpose of a vaccine adjuvant is to enhance (turbo charge) your immune response to the vaccine. Adjuvants cause your immune system to overreact to the introduction of the organism you’re being vaccinated against. As noted in the 2014 paper, “MF59 as a Vaccine Adjuvant: A Review of Safety and Immunogenicity”:16
“Its mechanism of action is not fully understood, but enhancement of the interaction between the antigen and the dendritic cell seems to be involved. When used with seasonal influenza vaccines, an increase occurs in the hemagglutination inhibition antibody titers against some, but not all, seasonal vaccine influenza strains …
Data suggest that MF59 exerts it immunostimulatory effect by engaging the muscle fibers and mononuclear cells to produce a local environment that is conducive to the attraction of effector cells and differentiation of monocytes to DCs [dendritic cells].”
Squalene-Based Flu Vaccines Linked to Narcolepsy
As reported in “Coronavirus Vaccine Will Bypass Safety Testing,” squalene-containing H1N1 vaccines distributed in Europe during the 2009 swine flu pandemic were found to cause narcolepsy, a very rare and disabling neurological disorder characterized by excessive daytime sleepiness.
About 70% of narcolepsy cases also involve cataplexy17 — the sudden loss of voluntary muscle control — along with vivid hallucinations and total paralysis at the beginning or end of the narcoleptic attack.
One of the H1N1 vaccines causatively linked to narcolepsy was GlaxoSmithKline’s Pandemrix vaccine, which was licensed by European government regulators and sold in a number of European countries (but not in the U.S.). The Pandemrix package insert18 actually stated that “somnolence,” although not narcolepsy per se, was a known potential side effect of the vaccine.
Thanks to the public pushback instigated by the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), which opposed the fast-tracked licensure of squalene adjuvants in swine flu vaccines under the Emergency Use Authorization Act, none of the H1N1 vaccines distributed in the U.S. contained squalene.
The danger with allowing questionable vaccine ingredients to be used in emergency vaccines is that once it’s been used in one vaccine, vaccine makers can then use it in other vaccines without having to go through the rigorous approval
Article from LewRockwell