New evidence in the scientific community indicates that there is a strong correlation between COVID-19, its related vaccines, and the reactivation of other viruses which have previously infected the host. This article will dive deeper into the nuances.
How Can Viruses Be Reactivated?
In the number of years I spent in the military as a microbiologist, I’ve always been quite impressed with how shrewd viruses can get.
During viral infections, viruses have to deal with the defense of the immune systems. If the immune system has the upper hand and defeats the viruses, viruses might develop mechanisms to stay dormant and become inactivated.
One such mechanism is to insert their viral DNA into cells’ chromosomes, staying in latency without active replication. Other mechanisms might involve promoting epigenetic silencing of the viral genome, meaning they stay “muted” in activity, but present and lying in wait.
Host cells will then reproduce cells still carrying the viral genetic information. Then, viruses might come back years, or even decades later, reactivating the viral replication when the immune system degrades. This prudent strategy where viruses turn into a latent enemy within the host is quite an effective strategy against the enemy, whether in the military or the human body.
The scientific community is very familiar with five types of viruses that are able to “hibernate” and reactivate given suitable conditions:
- Herpes simplex virus, which causes blisters in the mouth and genital herpes. It is extremely common;
- Varicella zoster virus (VZV), more commonly known as chickenpox;
- Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), which causes mononucleosis or “mono,” the “kissing disease,” as it can be transmitted when people kiss each other;
- Cytomegalovirus (CMV), which usually causes a great deal of trouble for immunocompromised people but not really otherwise;
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which causes AIDS; this virus can stay in your body for more than a decade before becoming activated.
Let’s take VZV, or chickenpox, as an example. In the usual sense, everybody gets chickenpox in their life. This usually happens early on and is quite itchy for the patient but doesn’t have a lot of other severe complications.
After the patient initially overcomes VZV, it never truly goes away. It has the possibility of coming back, especially with the weakening of the immune system. It can attack again in a more severe form called shingles or Herpes Zoster. Shingles is a very painful rash that develops on one side of the body. In some cases, it may also cause chronic nerve pain or other serious complications, including blindness.
Shingles can also be caused by advanced age, stress, diseases (chronic or acute), cancer, or various other sources. In fact, the aforementioned factors usually also lead to the reactivation of other viruses. Chronic fatigue might lead to reactivating EBV, herpes might be reawoken with surgery, and HIV might be kickstarted by tumors.