Head Of Laboratory In China Denies Coronavirus Originated There
Head Of Laboratory In China Denies
Amid ongoing U.S. investigations of the origins of the coronavirus, the head of a laboratory in Wuhan, China, is breaking his silence and dismissing the possibility that the virus escaped his facility.
What is the theory that the virus leaked from a laboratory in China and why did it gain traction?
Head of Laboratory in China Denies Coronavirus Originated There
Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the world has been trying to uncover the origin of the virus. Multiple theories have been put forward, including the possibility that the virus leaked from a laboratory in China. However, the head of that laboratory has firmly denied such allegations.
Shi Zhengli, the deputy director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), said in an interview with the New York Times that the virus did not originate from their laboratory or from any laboratory in China. She claimed that the virus was a natural occurrence and had likely originated from a bat species found in southwestern China.
Shi Zhengli is a leading virologist who has been studying bats and their role in transmitting viruses for years. She was responsible for discovering the closest known relative to Covid-19, the bat coronavirus RaTG13, in 2013. She also stressed that her laboratory has never been involved in any research that involved manipulating viruses, such as making them more contagious or deadly.
The theory that the virus leaked from a laboratory in China gained traction early on in the pandemic, as the WIV is located in Wuhan, the city where the virus was first detected. This theory was fueled by reports that several of the initial Covid-19 cases had links to a seafood market located near the laboratory.
However, Shi Zhengli dismissed these reports, stating that none of the virus samples collected from the market matched those found in the laboratory. She also pointed out that none of the staff at the WIV had contracted the virus before December 2019, which suggests that the virus did not leak from their laboratory.
Shi Zhengli’s denial of involvement in the origin of Covid-19 has been supported by top scientists and epidemiologists from around the world. In May 2021, a joint study by the World Health Organization and China found that it was “extremely unlikely” that the virus originated from a laboratory leak.
Despite this, the theory that the virus leaked from a laboratory in China continues to circulate in certain circles. This highlights the importance of properly investigating the origin of the virus and dispelling misinformation. As the world continues to grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic, it is crucial that we focus on finding solutions and working together, rather than pointing fingers and assigning blame.