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3 February 2021

Queries about Covid-19 vaccines causing infertility

I am concerned that Covid-19 vaccines may cause infertility.’

Question: Does the vaccine affect female fertility?

Scientific answer:

This question was originally set off by misinformation.

It was suggested that the spike protein that is on the surface of SARS-CoV-2 the virus that causes covid-19 disease was the same as the protein syncytin-1 a protein vital for the development of the placenta during reproduction. As a result when the vaccine generates antibodies against the spike protein of the virus it was hypothesised that this will also teach the immune system to react to syncytin-1 should a woman become pregnant.

This is extremely unlikely because the there is only a very short sequence on both the protein spike and the syncytin-1 that are alike and it will be therefore impossible for the body to mistaken the syncytin-1 protein for the spike protein.

This has been demonstrated by a study that looked at pregnancy attendances at a clinic early on in the pandemic and compared it to attendances pre pandemic. There was no change in the attendance for the two periods. If antibodies generated by the vaccine were to attack the syncytin-1 protein then it will be expected that patients who had covid in the past would also experience infertility as it is the same antibodies that are formed by both the naturally causing disease and the vaccine.