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US Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines aren't magnetic

07:20  22 june  2021
07:20  22 june  2021 Source:   usatoday.com

Woman fails to prove the COVID-19 vaccine made her magnetic during Ohio House hearing

  Woman fails to prove the COVID-19 vaccine made her magnetic during Ohio House hearing A nurse during an Ohio House hearing on Thursday tried to prove a debunked theory that taking the COVID-19 vaccine makes a person “magnetic."Joanna Overholt tried to place a key and bobby pin against her body in an effort to prove that both would stick to her skin, though the attempt ultimately failed. Overholt was trying to attest to a conspiracy theory that's been widely circulated by a Cleveland-area physician and anti-vaccine activist, Sherri Tenpenny, who also testified in front of Ohio lawmakers.

The claim: Magnetism was added to COVID-19 vaccines to push mRNA through the body

Side effects from the coronavirus vaccines can include fatigue, headache, fever, and — according to some anti-vaccine advocates — magnetism.

On June 9, Dr. Sherri Tenpenny, author of "Saying No to Vaccines," testified before Ohio lawmakers on a bill that would curtail COVID-19 vaccine requirements in the state. Tenpenny said the coronavirus spike protein that results from vaccination has "a metal attached to it."

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"I'm sure you've seen the pictures all over the internet of people who have had these shots and now they're magnetized," Tenpenny, a physician based in suburban Cleveland, said during the House Health Committee hearing. "You can put a key on their forehead, it sticks. You can put spoons and forks all over and they can stick because now we think there is a metal piece to that."

Another health care provider who testified during the hearing, Joanna Overholt, tried to prove that claim during the hearing.

Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines don't cause magnetic reactions or contain tracking devices

"Explain to me why the key sticks to me. It sticks to my neck too," Overholt said after failing to get a key to stick to her neck

The claim that the coronavirus vaccines are magnetic has circulated online for more than a month, according to First Draft, a nonprofit that tracks online misinformation. One recent version of the claim, a video published June 7 on Rumble, says magnetism was "intentionally added to 'vaccine' to force mRNA through entire body."

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"It's a process called magnetofection," Jane Ruby, a self-described "new right political pundit," said during the video. "They are using magnetic fields through different chemicals to actually concentrate the RNA, the mRNA, into people's cells."

The segment was published by the conservative Stew Peters Show, part of Red Voice Media. The video has more than 186,000 views on Rumble and more than 3,900 shares on Facebook, according to CrowdTangle, a social media insights tool.

Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines don't produce dangerous toxins

But the coronavirus vaccines are not magnetic, as USA TODAY and other independent fact-checking organizations have pointed out. And they don't rely in any way on "magnetofection."

All three coronavirus vaccines approved for emergency use in the United States are free from metals. And even if they did have metallic ingredients, public health officials say the vaccines wouldn't cause a magnetic reaction.

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USA TODAY reached out to Ruby and Tenpenny for comment.

Vaccine ingredients aren't magnetic

The lists of ingredients for all three coronavirus vaccines approved for emergency use are publicly available online. None of them include magnetic substances.

"Receiving a COVID-19 vaccine will not make you magnetic, including at the site of vaccination which is usually your arm," the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says on its website. "All COVID-19 vaccines are free from metals such as iron, nickel, cobalt, lithium, and rare earth alloys, as well as any manufactured products such as microelectronics, electrodes, carbon nanotubes, and nanowire semiconductors."

The primary ingredient in coronavirus vaccines from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna is messenger RNA (mRNA). Those molecules contain genetic information that teaches cells how to make the spike protein on the surface of the coronavirus, eliciting an immune response.

The remaining ingredients in the Pfizer vaccine include lipids (for protecting the mRNA and allowing it to slide into cells), salts (for balancing acidity in the body) and sugar (for helping the molecules maintain their shape). Moderna's vaccine also has those ingredients, as well as acids and acid stabilizers.

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  How breakthrough infection rates for vaccines will make a difference But negligible risk is not zero risk. Breakthrough infections, those that occur with people fully vaccinated, quantify such risk. As of April 30 , the CDC reported over 10,000 breakthrough infections out of over 100 million people fully vaccinated. Given that many such infections are asymptomatic or with mild symptoms, hence never detected, this value is likely significantly lower than the actual number of such infections. As such, the CDC stopped updating this data and began to report hospitalization and deaths amongst breakthrough infections - data that are easier to track.

Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine is a little different.

Instead of mRNA, the shot uses a modified, harmless version of the common cold to carry the gene sequence for the spike protein. Once inside a cell, the virus body disintegrates and the genetic material travels to the nucleus, where it's transcribed into mRNA. Other ingredients in the Johnson & Johnson vaccine include acids, salts, sugars and ethanol.

None of those compounds are magnetic. And even if they were, public health officials say they wouldn't cause metal objects to stick to the body.

"The typical dose for a COVID-19 vaccine is less than a milliliter, which is not enough to allow magnets to be attracted to your vaccination site even if the vaccine was filled with a magnetic metal," the CDC says.

Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines provide safer, more consistent immunity than infection

In response to USA TODAY's request for comment, Peters published a video in which he cites several studies and articles that don't mention the coronavirus.

Peters has also asserted coronavirus vaccines are part of "the most calculated mass murder ever orchestrated against global citizens in the history of the world." (They're not.)

Our rating: False

The claim that magnetism was added to COVID-19 vaccines to push mRNA through the body is FALSE, based on our research. None of the three coronavirus vaccines approved in the U.S. contain metals, and if they did, public health officials say they wouldn't cause magnetic reactions.

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Our fact-check sources:

  • Stew Peters Show, June 7, Rumble
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 25,, Possible Side Effects After Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine
  • The Columbus Dispatch, June 9, GOP-invited Ohio doctor Sherri Tenpenny falsely tells Ohio lawmakers COVID-19 shots 'magnetize' people, create 5G 'interfaces'
  • Tyler Buchanan, June 9, tweet
  • CrowdTangle, accessed June 15
  • Food and Drug Administration, March 26, Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine EUA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers
  • Food and Drug Administration, May 19, Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine EUA Fact Sheet for Healthcare Providers Administering Vaccine (Vaccination Providers)
  • Food and Drug Administration, April 23, Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine EUA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers 04232021
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, June 17, Myths and Facts about COVID-19 Vaccines
  • USA TODAY, March 5, How mRNA vaccines work
  • Hackensack Meridian Health, Jan. 11, A Simple Breakdown of the Ingredients in the COVID Vaccines
  • USA TODAY, March 27, Comparing the COVID-19 vaccines
  • USA TODAY, May 12, Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines don't cause magnetic reactions or contain tracking devices
  • DrJaneRuby.com, accessed June 17
  • PolitiFact, June 9, Sherri Tenpenny makes false COVID-19 vaccine magnetism claim to Ohio lawmakers
  • Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, Oct. 6, 2015, Polyethyleneimine-associated polycaprolactone—Superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles as a gene delivery vector
  • USA TODAY, April 30, Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines don’t cause death, won’t decimate world’s population
  • Red Voice Media, June 15, Stew Peters Show: Stew Peters Destroys ‘USA Today Fact-Checker’ With Evidence Backing Injection Magnetism
  • Theanostics, April 15, 2020, A review of emerging physical transfection methods for CRISPR/Cas9-mediated gene editing
  • Therapuetic Delivery, Oct. 8, 2015,

    Targeted drug delivery to the brain using

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    magnetic nanoparticles

  • Lead Stories, June 11, Fact Check: Magnetism Is NOT Intentionally Added to Vaccine To Force mRNA Through Entire Body
  • Reuters, May 17, Fact Check-'Magnet test' does not prove COVID-19 jabs contain metal or a microchip
  • Health Feedback, May 20, COVID-19 vaccines don’t contain magnetic ingredients; dose volume is too small to contain any device able to hold a magnet through the skin
  • First Draft, June 10, False claims about ‘magnetic’ Covid-19 vaccines continue to spread

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Our fact check work is supported in part by a grant from Facebook.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines aren't magnetic

Vaccine technology transfer center to open in South Africa .
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usr: 25
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