Pfizer Responds To Project Veritas’ Bombshell Exposé, Claims It Never ‘Conducted Gain of Function Research’

COVID-19 vaccine manufacturer goes on to admit it may "engineer" viruses "in a limited number of cases."

Image Credits: Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Pfizer/BioNTech.

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer pushed back against bombshell claims by one of its executives caught on undercover video taken by Project Veritas that the company is exploring “mutating” viruses, stating it has “not conducted gain of function or directed evolution research.”

In a statement released on its website Friday evening, Pfizer said it “would like to set the record straight” after the Project Veritas video went mega-viral on Wednesday.

“Allegations have recently been made related to gain of function and directed evolution research at Pfizer and the company would like to set the record straight,” the company stated.

In the ongoing development of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, Pfizer has not conducted gain of function or directed evolution research. Working with collaborators, we have conducted research where the original SARS-CoV-2 virus has been used to express the spike protein from new variants of concern. This work is undertaken once a new variant of concern has been identified by public health authorities. This research provides a way for us to rapidly assess the ability of an existing vaccine to induce antibodies that neutralize a newly identified variant of concern. We then make this data available through peer reviewed scientific journals and use it as one of the steps to determine whether a vaccine update is required.

After insisting it never conducted gain of function research, Pfizer went on to admit that it conducted gain of function research “in a limited number of cases.”

In addition, to meet U.S. and global regulatory requirements for our oral treatment, PAXLOVID™, Pfizer undertakes in vitro work (e.g., in a laboratory culture dish) to identify potential resistance mutations to nirmatrelvir, one of PAXLOVID’s two components. With a naturally evolving virus, it is important to routinely assess the activity of an antiviral. Most of this work is conducted using computer simulations or mutations of the main protease–a non-infectious part of the virus. In a limited number of cases when a full virus does not contain any known gain of function mutations, such virus may be engineered to enable the assessment of antiviral activity in cells. In addition, in vitro resistance selection experiments are undertaken in cells incubated with SARS-CoV-2 and nirmatrelvir in our secure Biosafety level 3 (BSL3) laboratory to assess whether the main protease can mutate to yield resistant strains of the virus. It is important to note that these studies are required by U.S. and global regulators for all antiviral products and are carried out by many companies and academic institutions in the U.S. and around the world.

The COVID-19 vaccine manufacturer added, “Fact-based information rooted in sound science is vitally important to overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic and Pfizer remains committed to transparency and helping alleviate the devastating burden of this disease.”

The statement was followed by a lengthy disclaimer listing the various COVID vaccines that have been authorized, safety information, and a list of side effects which notably include myocarditis and pericarditis.

Many on Twitter promptly mocked the pharma giant for its conflicting response.

Dr. Robert Malone, the inventor of the mRNA technology used in the COVID shots, said the Pfizer’s denial was actually an admission of guilt.

Pfizer’s statement comes a day after Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) wrote a letter to the vaccine maker demanding answers for the allegations made by its executive Jordan Walker about mutating viruses.

Despite the video generating concerns for lawmakers, YouTube removed the Project Veritas video on Friday, claiming it violated its policy on “medical misinformation.”


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