Thursday February 18, 2021
Hamburg researchers: Corona comes from the laboratory
By Friederike Zörner
It is not proof. But a Hamburg nanoscientist has collected evidence from various sources for months and comes to a clear judgment: The pathogen Sars-CoV-2 escaped in a laboratory accident. The pandemic is not a natural disaster.
The Sars-CoV-2 pathogen is not of natural origin, but has been artificially produced in a laboratory in Wuhan, China. This is the conclusion of the Hamburg nanoscientist Roland Wiesendanger. In a study According to his own statements, over a period from January to December 2020, he gathered evidence from various scientific publications, media articles, conversations with colleagues and contributions from social media. “In summary, it can be said that there is a great deal of evidence that suggests a laboratory accident at the ‘Wuhan Institute of Virology’ is by far the most likely cause of the corona pandemic,” says the paper.
In a Press release the University of Hamburg states that the study does not provide any highly scientific evidence, but does provide numerous and serious evidence. Wiesendanger lists several factors that, in his view, speak against the widely accepted theory that the Sars-Cov-2 pathogen originates from bats and was transmitted to humans via an intermediate host at the end of 2019.
On the one hand, in contrast to previous coronavirus-related epidemics such as Sars and Mers, no so-called intermediate host has been identified to date that could have enabled the described transmission path of the pathogen Sars-CoV-2 from bats to humans. The “zoonosis theory” as a possible explanation for the pandemic therefore has no sound scientific basis.
On the other hand, the current, “new” coronaviruses could couple surprisingly well to human cell receptors and penetrate human cells. “This is made possible by special cell receptor binding domains connected to a special (furin) cleavage site of the coronavirus spike protein,” says the press release. Both properties in combination are not yet known in coronaviruses and indicate a non-natural origin and a modification of the Sars-CoV-2 pathogen.
“Major safety flaws” in Wuhan laboratory
As a further point, the physicist points out that bats, which have been shown to carry a number of corona viruses, are not even offered at the animal market in central Wuhan, which is considered the starting point of the pandemic. In contrast, the virological institute in the metropolis has one of the “world’s largest collections of bat pathogens, which come from caves far away in southern Chinese provinces”. Wiesendanger draws the conclusion that it is extremely unlikely that bats would have made their way to Wuhan naturally from this distance of almost 2000 kilometers, “only to trigger a worldwide pandemic in the immediate vicinity of this virological institute”.
Rather, the Hamburg study sheds light on the fact that genetic manipulations have been carried out on coronaviruses at the institute in question for many years. These had the goal of making the viruses more contagious, dangerous and deadly for humans. Even before the outbreak of the pandemic, “significant safety deficiencies” were documented at the facility. The scientist therefore seems likely that there could have been an accident and a related outbreak of the virus.
As further evidence of a laboratory origin, the author lists a young scientist from the virological institute in Wuhan who is said to have been infected first. There are also numerous indications that the pathogen had already spread from the virological institute in October 2019. That would justify why Sars-CoV-2 could also be subsequently detected in Europe in November 2019. In addition, Wiesendanger writes of indications of a corresponding investigation of the virological institute by the Chinese authorities in the first half of October 2019.
The Hamburg professor concludes from these and other evidence that there is no scientifically sound basis for the claim that the current pandemic was caused by a zoonosis. As a result, it is not appropriate to speak of a “natural disaster” at the moment. Rather, there is a great deal of evidence that suggests a laboratory accident at the “Wuhan Institute of Virology” is by far the most likely cause of the corona pandemic. “In this case it would not be a ‘natural disaster’, but a tragedy caused by humans,” writes Wiesendanger.
Warning of even greater risk potential
Wiesendanger told the “Bild” newspaper about his motivation: “Scientific curiosity has brought me to this as well as a sense of duty. As a scientist, I have to ask about the origin of all the suffering that the Sars-CoV-2 virus has caused.” In his study, he cites a total of 60 evidence for his laboratory theory. “I only included the serious evidence in the study that can be evaluated according to scientific criteria. However, I have collected around 600 pieces of evidence in total,” the physicist is quoted as saying by the paper.
The University of Hamburg announced that the study was completed in January 2021 and was initially distributed and discussed in scientific circles. The publication of the findings is intended to stimulate a broad debate, “especially with regard to the ethical aspects of so-called ‘gain-of-function’ research, which makes pathogens more contagious, dangerous and deadly for humans.”
And for political decision-makers it also makes a difference “whether they should ban wildlife markets or high-risk research with genetically manipulated viruses worldwide”. Wiesendanger is certain that if this question is not brought to the fore, corona and other types of viruses could develop a much greater risk potential. This then applies not only to the present, but also to the future.
WHO considers accident unlikely
On behalf of the World Health Organization (WHO), a team of researchers in Wuhan looked for the origin of the pandemic. Among other things, the scientists visited the wild animal market and the virus laboratory mentioned. Although they have not yet succeeded in tracing the pathogen’s natural transmission route to humans, they and other experts are currently of the opinion that a laboratory accident is “extremely unlikely”.
The Chinese regime propagates a completely different theory. Namely that the pandemic place of origin is not in the People’s Republic, but that the pathogen was introduced into the country via frozen products. The WHO also considers this to be very unlikely. Peter Ben Embarek made this clear once again in Geneva. Embarek headed the Wuhan team of experts appointed by the WHO. The Chinese hypothesis is “not something we look at,” he said.