The Alberta government has procured Novavax vaccines in hopes of encouraging the unvaccinated to line up for their shot.
Unlike the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, Novavax doesn’t use newer mRNA technology, which some have been hesitant to take.
In a COVID-19 briefing on Thursday, Alberta Health Minister Jason Copping said some Albertans have been waiting for more non-mRNA options.
“I’m pleased to announce that Alberta is set to receive 10,000 doses of Novavax starting April 12,” he said.
“The best protection against COVID-19 continues to be vaccination.”
Additional Novavax vaccines can be ordered from the federal government, if required, said Alberta Health spokesperson Lisa Glover. She said Albertans can book an appointment to be immunized with Novavax by calling 811, beginning Tuesday.
The Novavax vaccine uses older technology that’s been used in influenza shots for decades. The vaccine contains a version of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein made in the lab, as well as an adjuvant, which is a booster ingredient designed to strengthen immune responses to the vaccine.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines are created in a laboratory, unlike most vaccines which use a weakened or inactivated germ.
mRNA enters the muscle cells and instructs the cells’ machinery to produce the spike protein, which is found on the surface of the virus that causes COVID-19. Cells display the spike protein piece on their surface, and immune systems, recognizing the protein doesn’t belong, produce antibodies to fight off what it thinks is an infection.
Dr. Robert Malone, one of the scientists behind mRNA technology, has been outspoken against the COVID-19 mRNA vaccines, saying the virus’ spike protein can permeate the blood-brain barrier.
The spike creates an open sieve so “things can go into your brain that shouldn’t go into your brain. So that can trigger brain inflammation,” he said on the hotly-contested Joe Rogan podcast.
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