Trump’s CDC Chief Warns: Gain of Function Research May Spark Bird Flu Pandemic, Killing 25-50%

Former CDC Director, Dr. Robert Redfield, expressed serious concerns⁢ about the potential for a deadly bird flu pandemic during an interview with NewsNation. He highlighted ⁣that this ⁤is not a question of “if” but “when” the outbreak will occur. Dr. Redfield warned that bird flu could have ⁣a mortality rate between 25%-50% when it affects⁢ humans. He noted a progressive ‍increase in bird flu cases among poultry ‌like ‍chickens,​ ducks, and turkeys⁤ in the United States since ⁤2019, and explained that the virus has spread to 27 mammal species in the country. Dr. Redfield ⁤emphasized the critical situation,⁤ pointing out that scientists understand the process needed for⁣ bird flu to transmit ​between humans,⁢ referencing‍ laboratory experiments conducted in 2012. This underscores ⁤the urgency and potential risk⁣ of a human pandemic ⁤if the virus adapts sufficiently to spread‌ from ⁣person to person.

Former President Donald Trump’s CDC Director warned during an interview over the weekend that he is becoming increasingly concerned about a deadly bird flu pandemic erupting that will likely have a high mortality rate.

Dr. Robert Redfield said during an interview with NewsNation that he believes it’s a matter of “when” and not “if” there will be a bird flu pandemic in humans.

“Unfortunately, bird flu, when it does enter humans, has a significant mortality, probably somewhere between 25%-50% mortality,” he said. “So it’s going to be quite complicated. Since 2019, we’ve had a progressive increase in bird flu in chickens and ducks and turkeys in our country. And since then, you’ve seen it now go into a number of mammals. It’s now in 27 mammals in the United States.”

Addressing why it’s important to note the the disease is spreading to other mammals, he said: “We know exactly what has to happen for bird flu to be infectious for humans and go human-to-human. Scientists in 2012 actually did experiments in the lab using gain of function research, which I’m not in favor of, but the scientists did it. And they figured the five amino acids that have to change in the key receptor in order for bird flu, to gain a propensity to bind to the human receptor, and then be able to go human-to-human, something that obviously happened with COVID, where COVID, obviously, learned how to use the H2 receptor in humans and of course, became a very infectious virus.”

He said that bird flu will be transmitted from person to person “through aerosols and droplets”. He said that he is worried that a pandemic will happen because the virus will become contagious because of lab experiments.

“Normally, the five amino acid changes is a huge, huge species barrier,” he said. “So who knows how long that will take but as it goes into more and more different mammals, it’s changing, its use of receptors, it’s changing, it’s learning to how to use different receptors for dolphins and seals. And it’s learning how to use receptors in bears and polar bears and foxes and raccoons and cats. So it’s going through a lot of changes and it’s, as it picks up some of these new receptors, it can get closer and closer to humans.”

He said that he was concerned about the virus spreading to cattle because cattle are often in close proximity to pigs and viruses jump easily from pigs to humans.

“I’m less concerned, though, that this will happen through spillover and evolution in animals,” he said. “I’m much more concerned that this will happen in the laboratory, through gain of functional research. I can create this virus, literally in weeks to months by using gain of function research. I know exactly what amino acids I have to change because in 2012, against my recommendation, the scientists that did these experiments actually published them. So the recipe for how to make bird flu highly infectious for humans is already out there. All you have to do is look at it.”


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