Experts answer two hypotheses about the origin of COVID-19

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Experts answer two hypotheses about the origin of COVID-19

Versions of man-made and natural origin of COVID-19 are supported only by circumstantial evidence, told RBC a virologist, professor at Moscow State University, Doctor of Biological Sciences Alexei Agranovsky.

“Most scientists are not just what stands for one of the versions, rather they are wary of any categorical judgments,” he said.

Earlier, Doctor of Biological Sciences, Head of the Virology Laboratory of Novosibirsk State University (NSU) Sergei Netesov said that in the scientific community there are two main hypotheses about the origin of CVOID-19 – the natural origin or the leak from the laboratory of the strain from some animals.

According to Agranovsky, scientists need data on intermediate variants of the virus, proving its natural origin, or specific information about the development of SARS CoV-2 in the laboratory. “Then it will be possible to judge the origin of the virus more definitely,” the virologist explained.

The head of the laboratory for especially dangerous infections of the Federal Research Center for Fundamental and Translational Medicine (FRC FTM), professor of virology, Alexander Chepurnov, told RBC that he does not believe in the artificial origin of the virus. However, he clarified that the virus can still be changed in the course of various cultivation conditions.

“I quite imagine that by studying the range of action of this virus, to which the American side actively encouraged the Chinese with various grants, scientists could in the process select the option that could“ sit ”on the human receptor. And while working with viruses, someone could accidentally become infected and bring the virus into the human population – all the same in the evening everyone goes home, goes shopping and so on, ”he said.

According to Larisa Popovich, director of the Institute for Health Economics at the Higher School of Economics, specific arguments are needed to confirm the data on the artificial origin of the virus. “Viruses appear naturally, and others can be expected, especially in the context of climate and ecosystem changes. All these conspiracy theories are nonsense, ”she clarified in a conversation with RBC.

In March, the World Health Organization (WHO) published a report on the occurrence of COVID-19. The WHO presented four versions of the appearance of the virus in it. The authors consider the most likely version of the transmission of coronavirus to humans from bats through an intermediary animal. At the same time, the version of the leakage of the virus from the laboratory in Wuhan in the WHO was called “extremely unlikely.”

In mid-April, US National Intelligence Director Avril Haynes named two “alternative versions” of the appearance of COVID-19 – patient zero contact with an infected animal and an accidental leak of the virus from a laboratory in Wuhan. CIA Director William Burns agrees with Haynes. However, the secret services do not have reliable information about the origin of COVID-19. US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken also said that the administration of US President Joe Biden intends to understand the origin of the coronavirus and China will be held accountable.

In May, British and Norwegian scientists Angus Dalglish and Birger Sørensen announced that COVID-19 was created in a laboratory, after which Chinese scientists put forward a version of the virus' origin from bats in order to “cover their tracks.” They claimed to have found “unique fingerprints” in the virus and evidence that it did not have a credible source. Former chief sanitary doctor of Russia Gennady Onishchenko, in turn, spoke about the lack of proof of this theory. “Today, both versions cannot be proven, because the convention on biological and toxin weapons does not work. It does not have a legitimate control mechanism recognized by all countries, ”he said.

Experts answer two hypotheses about the origin of COVID-19

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