Good Question: What's in each COVID vaccine?

Brennan Somers
Created: April 05, 2021 07:03 AM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC)— This is a story for everyone, whether you already got your shots, still have appointments booked, or you become eligible in the next group come Tuesday.

John sent News10NBC's Brennan Somers this message: Why aren't we told the ingredients in the COVID shots? I can't even buy a box of cookies without knowing what's in them.

The list of COVID vaccine ingredients is out there. Somers found it posted on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's website.

Pfizer click here.
Moderna click here.
Johnston & Johnson ingredients are here.

We obviously all aren't doctors or studied this in college, so when you read all these fancy names that even include numbers it's easy to get lost.

Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Emil Lesho from Rochester Regional Health told Somers the active ingredient in the two main vaccines: Pfizer and Moderna- is a set of instructions in the form of what's called messenger RNA. It's snippets of COVID's genetic code, not the live virus causing COVID itself.

"That instructs our bodies cells to produce protective proteins or the antibodies against it," Lesho added. "But in addition to that, you could simplify it by saying there's a bunch of other lipids that are inactive, salts, sugars, and buffers."

All three vaccines including, J&J,  use a genetic map to help create protection. J&J delivers a spike protein activating your immune system. As for what's in the liquid in these vials, think of it as saltwater, it's pretty routine stuff.

Lesho says some of these ingredients are used in cancer medicine and even some implants.

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