Scientists have denied the emergence of COVID-19 in China and the leak of the virus from the laboratory

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Scientists have denied the emergence of COVID-19 in China and the leak of the virus from the laboratory

A group of French scientists have denied the theory of the origin of COVID-19 in the Chinese cave of Mojiang and the assumptions about the leak of the virus from the laboratory. This is stated in the preliminary results of the study, announced in the journal Science Direct.

Last year, a group of researchers published an article suggesting that the Mojiang Cave in China may be the site of a new coronavirus infection, since a virus similar to SARS-CoV-2 was discovered there in 2012. Then six people contracted a severe respiratory infection after clearing the caves of bat excrement for the subsequent extraction of copper. The infected men were between the ages of 30 and 60, three of them died due to illness. Subsequent examination revealed that they were infected with a coronavirus dubbed RaTG13. Virus samples were collected by the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Indian scientists have suggested that RaTG13 may be a close relative of SARS-CoV-2, but French colleagues say the opposite.

According to preliminary results of a new study, people infected with RaTG13 experienced symptoms very different from those seen in patients with COVID-19. A study of the miners' medical reports showed that, unlike COVID-19 patients, they coughed up blood and mucus. Computed tomography showed that the men did not have the scars on the lungs, which were observed in many hospitalized with the current coronavirus. Scientists also wondered why the doctors and people with whom the Chinese miners were in close contact did not get sick.

“One must also wonder why the virus, which killed more than five million people and infected more than 200 million in 18 months, did not cause any disease in the seven years from 2012 to 2019,” the scientists said.

The French researchers said the results of their scientific work also refute previous claims of the virus leaking from the laboratory. “The abandonment of the theory of the origin of the virus from the Mojiang mine leaves the hypothesis of a laboratory leak without any scientific support, which makes them unsubstantiated assumptions,” the study said.

However, the results of this study have been questioned by other scientists. A virologist at the University of Warwick in the UK, Professor Lawrence Young told Sputnik News that the laboratory leak theory “cannot be ruled out,” and Professor David Livermore, a microbiologist at the University of East Anglia, said that while he believes the laboratory leak theory is unlikely for the origin of the virus, there are “some remarkable coincidences.” “The pandemic started in Wuhan, which is far from the bat caves in southern China, where the Institute of Virology is located, which is doing molecular work on coronaviruses,” Livermore said.

Scientists have previously assessed the role of three blood test parameters affecting the survival of patients with severe COVID-19, and found that specific antibodies are a key factor in survival with coronavirus infection.

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