Friday, November 19, 2021

First Known Covid Case Was Vendor at Wuhan Market, Scientist Says - The New York Times

A scientist who has pored over public accounts of early Covid-19 cases in China reported on Thursday that an influential World Health Organization inquiry had most likely gotten the early chronology of the pandemic wrong. The new analysis suggests that the first known patient sickened with the coronavirus was a vendor in a large Wuhan animal market, not an accountant who lived many miles from it.

The report, published on Thursday in the prestigious journal Science, will revive, though certainly not settle, the debate over whether the pandemic started with a spillover from wildlife sold at the market, a leak from a Wuhan virology lab or some other way. The search for the origins of the greatest public health catastrophe in a century has fueled geopolitical battles, with few new facts emerging in recent months to resolve the question.

The scientist, Michael Worobey, a leading expert in tracing the evolution of viruses at the University of Arizona, came upon timeline discrepancies by combing through what had already been made public in medical journals, as well as video interviews in a Chinese news outlet with people believed to have the first two documented infections.


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... And butter wouldn't melt in their mouths!

Posted by: Stu Buchalter | Nov 19, 2021 6:01:50 PM

From this morning's Telegraph:

In September, researchers discovered a viral strain called Banal-52 in Laos, which shares 96.8 per cent of its genome with Sars-CoV-2 - boosting claims that the pandemic was caused by a natural spillover event, rather than a laboratory leak.

However, it remained unclear how a bat-borne virus from Laos could have ended up sparking an outbreak in Wuhan, more than 1,000 miles away.

Now, leaked emails between EcoHealth Alliance and US government funders show viral samples were being collected from bats in Laos and sent back to the Wuhan Institute of Virology for study.

The emails, uncovered in a Freedom of Information Request by the US-based White Coat Waste Project, suggest that viral DNA from “bats and other high-risk species” were sent to Wuhan between June 2017 to May 2019.

Posted by: dearieme | Nov 20, 2021 4:20:46 PM

Who'd'a thunk it?

Posted by: Stu Buchalter | Nov 21, 2021 2:24:19 PM

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