The allegations that the coronavirus pandemic originated from a laboratory in the Chinese provincial capital Wuhan are “malicious” and “unfounded” and contradict all available data, The Director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) and Director of the National Biological Security Laboratory Yuan Zhiming told Reuters.
US President Donald Trump said on April 15 that his administration is investigating whether the coronavirus came from Wuhan’s lab.
“The Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) has neither the intention nor the ability to design and create a new Coronavirus,” the Chinese professor replied in the relevant written questions addressed to him by Reuters. “In addition, there is no information in the Genome of Sars CoV-2 to indicate that it was created by humans.”
Some conspiracy theories were fueled by a survey by the India Institute of Technology of India, which was widely disseminated and withdrawn in the meantime. It claimed that the coronavirus proteins had an “unusual resemblance” to those of HIV. But most scientists say the new virus came from wild animals. Bats and dolphins are considered potential hosts.
“More than 70% of infectious diseases are caused by animals, especially wild animals,” Professor Yuan said in response to a Reuters question. “In recent years, we have noticed that there is a growing risk of close contact between humans and wildlife, global climate change and the continuing expansion of human activities,” he said.
All seven known coronavirus that infects humans come from bats, mice or pets, scientists say.
Professor Yuan also rejected theories that the lab accidentally released a corona ion that it extracted from bats for research because the procedures laboratory biosecurity are strictly applied. ‘High-level biosecurity laboratories shall have sophisticated protection facilities and implement strict measures to ensure the safety of the laboratory and the protection of the environment from the risk of contamination”, Yuan stressed.