Israel is currently the world leader in the COVID-19 vaccination campaign. More than 1 million of their people, or nearly 12% of the population, received vaccines purchased from Pfizer / BioNTech.
However, negative and misleading news started to explode after there were reports of 240 cases of COVID-19 infection just days after vaccination in Israel. Several anti-vaccines have cited it, claiming that Pfizer / BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine introduced the real virus into these individuals and infected them.
Unfortunately for them, we have enough grounds to disprove this information completely. The COVID-19 vaccine is based on a 21st-century technology, and it cannot infect the person with the same disease as the traditional vaccine of centuries.
The question is simply: Why are so few vaccinated people still infected with COVID-19? And how can we prevent that?
COVID-19’s vaccine How does Pfizer / BioNTech work?
To be able to understand why a small number of people after vaccination with Pfizer / BioNTech COVID-19 are still infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, we need to analyze how the new vaccine works. this. Like the biotech company Moderna, Pfizer / BioNTech also develops its COVID-19 vaccine based on an entirely new technology called mRNA.
mRNAs are messenger RNAs. True to their name, mRNA is like a communicator from the nucleus of the cell, (the place containing the DNA or the helix codes that control protein synthesis) to the cytoplasm. The mRNA carries the genetic encoding of the DNA outside the nucleus, telling the cells what protein they are missing.
After the cell receives that information, it activates a protein-producing plant called the ribosome in the cytoplasm to produce the exact proteins the mRNA ordered.
Scientists know they can take advantage of the mRNA’s protein ordering process to turn each ribosome found in each cell into a COVID-19 vaccine factory in the body.
The goal is to take a genetic code of the SARS-CoV-2 virus itself (the part that instructs the virus to make the spiny proteins out of their envelope), using this code to design the mRNAs that help your body. also produces spiny proteins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus without injecting any real virus, even if the virus is weakened.
This new vaccine technology will ensure two things:
First, you cannot become infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus because of the mRNA vaccine, because it does not contain the virus that causes disease like traditional vaccines.
Second, your body is still trained to recognize the spiny proteins of the SARS-CoV-2 virusthereby creating antibodies against them. These antibodies will help you fight against the SARS-CoV-2 virus and protect you from COVID-19 if you accidentally spread it from the outside.
So why are people still infected with COVID-19 after getting vaccinated?
As you can see, the Pfizer / BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine works by deceiving the body with mRNAs that instruct cells to produce the spiny protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The process is basically in 5 steps:
Step 1: After injecting these mRNAs into humans, they need to go to as many cells as they can, then instruct the cells to produce the viral spiny proteins, turning their ribosomes into vaccine factories.
Step 2: Day after day, the amount of the prickly protein of SARS-CoV-2 in your body gradually increases until the dose is sufficient.
Step 3: These proteins activate the immune system, causing immune cells to detect them as foreign molecules.
Step 4: Immune cells produce antibodies that neutralize any spiny proteins they detect (including the spiny protein produced by the cell mRNA and the spiny protein of the real SARS-CoV-2 virus that you can infect. from the outside).
Step 5: It will take a while for your antibody levels to be large enough to counteract the full load of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that you might be infected with. When the prickly protein is inactivated, the SARS-CoV-2 virus cannot use them to infect your cells and cause illness. You are protected from COVID-19.
So the key issue here is that the mRNA vaccine takes time to take effect, it takes all 5 steps to protect you from the SARS-CoV-2 virus. But how long is this? How long does it take for the body to receive the mRNA until it produces enough antibodies to protect the injection person from getting sick?
The Pfizer / BioNTech clinical trial study shows this window period is about 12 days after the first injection. That means 12 days after the injection, the new vaccine can start to protect you.
A graph comparing the incidence of COVID-19 in people who received placebo only (saline) with those receiving the real vaccine by Pfizer / BioNTech below shows that 12-day figure.
Before 12 days, the infection rates of those who received the vaccine and the placebo were the same, and after 12 days, those who received the vaccine were spectacularly protected:
The new vaccine can start to protect you 12 days after the injection.
But this protection is not perfect either. Trials on more than 21,000 people who received the Pfizer / BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in Argentina, Brazil, Germany, South Africa, Turkey and the United States showed that between the first and second injections, the potency of the vaccine please only reach 52%. Out of the 21,720 vaccinated people, there were still 39 cases of SARS-CoV-2 virus infection.
It takes up to 7 days after the second injection, ie 28 days after the first injection, for the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer / BioNTech to have an expected effect of more than 95%. So it takes 4 weeks for the infection window to actually close tightly, helping protect you from the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
It must also be added that the 240 people infected with COVID-19 following vaccination in Israel are not a large proportion of the more than 1 million people who have been vaccinated. Since Israel only started its vaccination program on December 19 last year, COVID-19 infections following vaccination remain within the 28-day vaccination window period.
Earlier, an American nurse was also confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 on Friday after getting COVID-19 vaccine. However, health experts have acknowledged that these infections are normal, not caused by vaccines. These people just unfortunately get the virus during the window period when their bodies haven’t made enough antibodies to fight the disease.
People who have received COVID-19 vaccine are therefore recommended to continue to strictly take precautions such as: wearing a mask, washing hands, and taking social breaks to protect themselves and those around them.