Italian researchers have reportedly detected antibodies specific to the virus responsible for Covid-19 in blood samples collected from September 2019. This work reshuffles the cards of what we thought we knew about the beginnings of the epidemic and raises new questions .
“We knew it didn’t all start in China last December, commence the Corriere della Sera, but now, a study published in November with as first author the director of the National Cancer Institute of Milan, Giovanni Apolone, teaches us something absolutely unexpected: in September 2019, 14% of the blood samples of volunteers taking part of a lung cancer study had antibodies to the new coronavirus. ”
In other words, Sars-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the current pandemic, would have circulated in Italy last year, probably as early as the summer of 2019, months before it was detected in Wuhan, in central China. These amazing results “Could reshape the history of the pandemic”, warns in the South China Morning Post Gabriella Sozzi, researcher at the National Cancer Institute in Milan, who led the study published in the peer-reviewed journal Tumors Journal.
The researcher and her colleagues thus re-examined the samples of