Communist China is reportedly planning to build dozens of new biolabs in the next few years as the world continues to reel from the coronavirus pandemic that originated in Wuhan in late 2019, in what many believe was a deliberately altered virus that escaped the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The Financial Times reported that the Guangdong province in China recently announced that it was planning on building more than two dozen BSL-3 labs and one BSL-4 lab over the course of the next five years.
The Times reports:
But some Chinese officials have warned about poor security at existing facilities. In 2019 Yuan Zhiming, the director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s BSL-4 lab, wrote a review of the safety deficiencies in China’s laboratories. “Several high-level BSLs have insufficient operational funds for routine yet vital processes,” Yuan wrote, adding that maintenance costs were “generally neglected”.
“Due to the limited resources, some BSL-3 laboratories run on extremely minimal operational costs or in some cases none at all,” he said. In 2020, the central government passed a new law to improve national biosafety standards.
The report highlighted a well-known lab leak in China from 2004 where nine people were infected and one died after a SARS virus escaped.
However, the report noted a similar outbreak that happened in China just months before the current pandemic erupted that involved more than 6,000 people becoming infected with a bacterial disease after a leak at a vaccine plant.
Brucellosis, a bacterial disease with flu-like symptoms, has infected more than 6,000 people in a single outbreak in northwestern China.
Usually caused by contact with animals, the outbreak in Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province, was due to a leak at a vaccine plant, according to Lanzhou’s health commission. People are still being treated at hospitals even though the outbreak happened a year ago.
The report comes as the narrative surrounding the origins of the coronavirus pandemic has shifted from calling the theory that it originated in lab a “conspiracy theory” to various top officials and news publications all of a sudden treating it as credible and highly plausible.
Dr. Steven Quay and UC Berkeley emeritus professor of physics Richard Muller explained in The Wall Street Journal over the weekend 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?
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