A scientist and a doctor explained in a Sunday op-ed the “damning” evidence suggesting that COVID-19 was altered in a laboratory.
Dr. Steven Quay and UC Berkeley emeritus professor of physics Richard Muller explained in The Wall Street Journal that the genomic structure of COVID-19 was unlike anything discovered in nature, which is the strongest evidence the coronavirus was altered in a lab.
The two explained that in gain-of-function research, a spike protein is altered for the purpose of making a virus more transmissible or lethal. A specific genomic sequence, CGG-CGG (known as “double CGG”), they said, has “never been found naturally” in “the entire class of coronaviruses that includes CoV-2.” They explained that natural processes could not create a sequence combination if it “isn’t present in any other virus.”
The two wrote:
Although the double CGG is suppressed naturally, the opposite is true in laboratory work. The insertion sequence of choice is the double CGG. That’s because it is readily available and convenient, and scientists have a great deal of experience inserting it. An additional advantage of the double CGG sequence compared with the other 35 possible choices: It creates a useful beacon that permits the scientists to track the insertion in the laboratory.
Now the damning fact. It was this exact sequence that appears in CoV-2. Proponents of zoonotic origin must explain why the novel coronavirus, when it mutated or recombined, happened to pick its least favorite combination, the double CGG. Why did it replicate the choice the lab’s gain-of-function researchers would have made?
They noted that when Chinese scientists published a paper in February 2020, it omitted any mention of the sequence that scientists can identify when they examine the coronavirus.
There is additional scientific evidence that points to CoV-2’s gain-of-function origin. The most compelling is the dramatic differences in the genetic diversity of CoV-2, compared with the coronaviruses responsible for SARS and MERS.
Both of those were confirmed to have a natural origin; the viruses evolved rapidly as they spread through the human population, until the most contagious forms dominated. Covid-19 didn’t work that way. It appeared in humans already adapted into an extremely contagious version. No serious viral “improvement” took place until a minor variation occurred many months later in England.
Such early optimization is unprecedented, and it suggests a long period of adaptation that predated its public spread. Science knows of only one way that could be achieved: simulated natural evolution, growing the virus on human cells until the optimum is achieved. That is precisely what is done in gain-of-function research. Mice that are genetically modified to have the same coronavirus receptor as humans, called “humanized mice,” are repeatedly exposed to the virus to encourage adaptation.
Vanity Fair reported last week that research supervised by the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s lead coronavirus researcher, Shi Zhengli, “tested two novel but undisclosed bat coronaviruses on humanized mice, to gauge their infectiousness.”