German man received 217 coronavirus vaccine shots over a 29-month period, study says

A doctor draws a dose from a vial of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.

A 62-year-old man in Germany still has a functioning immune system after receiving 217 COVID-19 vaccine shots over a 29-month period, researchers have revealed. 

The individual from Magdeburg underwent the repeated jabs "deliberately and for private reasons" and against the recommendations of national health authorities, according to a study published this week in the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal. 

"Throughout the entire hypervaccination schedule [he] did not report any vaccination-related side effects," wrote the researchers from Friedrich Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg and University Hospital Erlangen. "We do not endorse hypervaccination as a strategy to enhance adaptive immunity." 

The study indicates that the man received his first coronavirus vaccine shot — a single-dose Johnson & Johnson one — on June 3, 2021. He then started getting doses produced by companies such as AstraZeneca and Moderna before heavily ramping up his vaccination schedule in January 2022, at the peak of the omicron variant. 

Data shows during the last two weeks of that month, the man got a COVID-19 vaccine shot every day except one, often getting one dose in each arm. He then did the same for the first 12 days of February 2022.  

"Evidence for 130 vaccinations in a 9-month period was collected by the public prosecutor of Magdeburg, Germany, who opened an investigation of this case with the allegation of fraud, but criminal charges were not filed," the study said. "108 vaccinations are individually recorded and partly overlap with the total of 130 prosecutor-confirmed vaccinations." 

The vaccinations reportedly continued through November of last year. 

"In summary, our case report shows that SARS-CoV-2 hypervaccination did not lead to adverse events and increased the quantity of spike-specific antibodies and T cells without having a strong positive or negative effect on the intrinsic quality of adaptive immune responses," the study added. "While we found no signs of SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infections in [the man] to date, it cannot be clarified whether this is causally related to the hypervaccination regimen." 

Researchers say they conducted the study after submitting a proposal to the man through the public prosecutor. He then "actively and voluntarily consented to provide medical information and donate blood and saliva." 

"Some scientists were of the opinion that immune cells would become less effective after becoming used to the antigens," Friedrich Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg said in a statement.

"This proved not to be the case in the individual in question: his immune system is fully functional," the statement continued. "Further tests indicated that there was no change to the immune system’s effectiveness against other pathogens. It therefore appears to be the case that the hypervaccination has not damaged the immune system as such."