En av verdens fremste genforskere, Alina Chan fra MIT, holdt onsdag foredrag for vitenskapskomiteen i Parlamentet, og hun sa lab-lekkasje-teorien er den som står sterkest. Til tross for to års graving er ikke noe naturlig vertsdyr funnet. Mye tyder også på at virusets evne til å trenge inn i cellene skyldes genetisk manipulasjon.

Chan mente at med dagens informasjonssamfunn vil sannheten komme for en dag, og så langt peker indikatorene mot Wuhan-laboratoriet.

Dr Chan, said: “I think the lab origin is more likely than not. Right now it’s not safe for people who know about the origin of the pandemic to come forward. But we live in an era where there is so much information being stored that it will eventually come out.

“We have heard from many top virologists that a genetically engineered origin is reasonable and that includes virologists who made modifications to the first Sars virus.

“We know this virus has a unique feature, called the furin cleavage site, and without this feature there is no way this would be causing this pandemic.

“A proposal was leaked showing that EcoHealth and the Wuhan Institute of Virology were developing a pipeline for inserting novel furin cleavage sites. So, you find these scientists who said in early 2018 ‘I’m going to put horns on horses’ and at the end of 2019 a unicorn turns up in Wuhan city.”

The furin cleavage point on Covid-19 is part of the spike protein which helps it to enter cells.

Chan har skrevet en bok om viruset sammen med Ridley og han kommenterte at det var viktig å trenge til bunns i mysteriet før andre aktører ser at en pandemi kan være et nyttig våpen.

Viscount Ridley, who co-authored a book on the origin of the virus with Dr Chan, said he also believed a lab leak was now the likely origin.

Lord Ridley told MPs: “I also think it’s more likely than not because we have to face the fact after two months we knew the origins of Sars, and after a couple of months we knew Mers was though through camels, but after two years we still haven’t found a single infected animal that could be the progenitor, and that’s incredibly surprising.

“We need to find out so we can prevent the next pandemic. We need to know whether we should be tightening up work in laboratories or whether we should be tightening up regulations related to wildlife markets. At the moment we are really not doing either.

“We also need to know to deter bad actors who are watching this episode and thinking that unleashing a pandemic is something they could get away with.

Det er noe merkelig og truende i at man fant opprinnelsen til Sars og Mers etter et par måneder. Nå er det gått to år og vi vet ikke hvor covid-19 kommer fra.

Ridley sier det er gjort eksperimenter i laboratorier med sikkerhetsnivå på linje med et tannlegekontor hvor det er fremstilt virus som er ti tusen ganger mer smittsomt og fire-fem ganger mer dødelig. Dette er livsfarlig.

“We know now that experiments were being done at biosecurity level 2 (similar to a dentist’s office) that resulted in 10,000 times increases in infectivity of viruses and three or four times their lethality. The important thing is to stop doing these experiments that are risky.”

Men vi har ikke hørt særlig mye i mediene om hvor slike eksperiment foregår.

The Lancet ble trukket frem som eksempel på et fagtidsskrift som lot seg bruke til å mørklegge virusets opphav, med det famøse brevet Peter Daszak fikk publisert med 26 andre forskere som gikk god for at viruset hadde et naturlig opphav.

Hvorfor tok det over ett år før the Lancet innrømmet at Peter Daszak og hans firma var involvert i gain-of-function-forskning, ble redaktør Richard Horton spurt.

Han svarte at det tok ett år å overtale Daszak til å innrømme at han hadde en interessekonflikt.

Mr Horton argued it had taken more than a year to ‘persuade’ Mr Daszak to declare that EcoHealth was working with the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

“We ask everybody to declare their competing interest and we take those statements on trust and in this care regrettably the authors claimed they had no competing interest and of course the implication there were indeed competing interests that were significant, particularly in relation to Peter Daszak,” said Mr Horton.

“We take declarations of conflicts of interests on trust. We quickly became aware of Peter Daszak’s conflict of interest and we ended up having a debate with him because his view was ‘Look, I’m an expert working in China on bat coronaviruses and that isn’t a competing interest, it makes me an expert.’

“But in the court of public opinion, that is a competing interest you should declare and it took us over a year to persuade him to declare his full competing interest.”

 

 

Wuhan lab leak ‘now the most likely origin of Covid’, MPs told
Dr Alina Chan says there is also a risk that Covid-19 is an engineered virus

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