What are the biggest misunderstandings about vaccines

Confusion over the effectiveness of Chinese vaccines

With his statement at a conference in Chengdu that Chinese vaccines "do not achieve very high protection rates", the head of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention Gao Fu attracted a lot of attention.

But shortly afterwards he put his statement into perspective. His aim was to further increase the effectiveness of the vaccines, for example by administering various preparations. So he presented a corresponding "scientific vision", he told the Global Times.

Fu's argument, however, is consistent with what is known so far about the effectiveness of the four vaccines that have been approved in China to date. They are by no means ineffective.

Three dead vaccines, one vector vaccine

Three vaccines (two vaccines from Sinopharm and one from Sinovac) are dead vaccines with inactivated virus proteins. So they are based on a long-established technology that is used, for example, in vaccines against hepatitis B or flu.

Although these COVID-19 vaccines do not achieve as high efficacy values ​​as the mRNA vaccines from BioNTech / Pfizer or Moderna (over 95 percent), they are still significantly more effective than some flu vaccines, some of which are only 30 achieve up to 60 percent.

Sinopharm's Vero vaccine, for example, was 79 percent effective in a phase III study that was carried out in ten countries around the world. The United Arab Emirates even came up with 86 percent in a separate study.

According to preliminary studies from Brazil and Indonesia, the effectiveness of the CoronaVac vaccine from Sinovac is between 50 and 78 percent.

The fourth Chinese vaccine from CanSino is a vector vaccine based on an adenovirus type 5. This means that the principle of action of the vaccine is comparable to that of the AstraZeneca vaccine. It should achieve an effectiveness of 65 percent.

Basically, the effectiveness values ​​improve to over 80 percent if you only take into account severe disease processes that also require hospitalization.

Combination of vaccines not uncommon

The idea of ​​combining vaccines to increase effectiveness is not fundamentally new. Scientists are currently discussing similar approaches for AstraZeneca's vector vaccine.

Strictly speaking, the Russian vaccine Sputnik V also consists of two vaccinations with different vector vaccines based on different adenoviruses. The developers expect this to be more effective.

China is practically unable to test the effectiveness of its vaccines in its own country because the strict lockdown measures have resulted in very few cases of infection. Therefore, research relies on studies that are carried out in severely affected countries such as Brazil.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Hustle and bustle!

    The immune system needs many different fuels. They deliver fruit and vegetables. Eat a colorful diet as possible: oranges, red peppers, green leafy vegetables, red cabbage provide a colorful potpourri of vitamins and lots of natural vitamin C.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Check vaccination status!

    In order to bring the immune system up to date, one should have all the necessary vaccinations. Adults often forget to refresh their childhood vaccinations. So take a look at the vaccination card: Is the immunization against tetanus, diphtheria, whooping cough, polio, hepatitis, pneumococci, meningitis, measles, mumps, rubella, flu and others still available? It's best to ask the doctor!

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Run away from the viruses!

    Scientific studies suggest that regular muscle training (jogging, Nordic walking, walking) for 20 minutes or more three times a week has been shown to increase the immune system. But be careful: If you work too hard, you also exhaust your immune system.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Sleep hard!

    Sufficient sleep not only ensures relaxation. During the deep sleep phases, messenger substances are released that also mobilize the immune system.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Have fun!

    Studies show that a good mood and fun in life promote a strong immune system. Laughing and playing not only improve the quality of life, but also increase the immune system!

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Avoid stress!

    Negative stress stimulates the release of adrenaline and cortisol. These hormones paralyze the immune system. Conscious stress and time management helps the body to calm down and recharge its batteries. Targeted relaxation exercises such as meditation, autogenic training and yoga can significantly support the immune system.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    To go for a walk!

    Walks in the fresh air bring changing temperature stimuli and movement - both stimulate the immune system. In addition, the mucous membranes benefit from better blood circulation and, thanks to the higher humidity, they can cope better with virus attacks.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Beware of sugar!

    Studies have shown that when short-chain sugar is burned, many vitamins are consumed that are then no longer available to the body.

  • Viruses and bacteria don't stand a chance - with a strong immune system

    Warm and cold!

    “Alternating showers” ​​train heat regulation and blood vessels. Warm-cold-warm-cold is the motto. You can support the shower with a vigorous massage with a massage sponge or brush. This also stimulates the immune system.