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Chinese Scientists Throw Cold Water on COVID Origin Theory

They say there's still a chance the virus was carried to Wuhan market by humans or products

(Newser) - An analysis of samples from the market in Wuhan by an international group of scientists, offering evidence that COVID-19 jumped from animals to humans there, has sped up the release of another analysis from Chinese government scientists, based on the same data. The early, unedited version of the study, published...

Biden Signs Bill to Release Intelligence on COVID Origins

Bipartisan legislation gives agency 90 days

(Newser) - President Biden on Monday signed a bill directing the government to declassify intelligence about how COVID-19 originated. The law allows redactions to protect sensitive sources and methods, Axios reports. It requires the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to act within 90 days. "My administration will declassify and...

Data Points Finger at New COVID Culprit

Virus samples from Wuhan market contained genetic material of raccoon dogs: experts

(Newser) - A team of virus experts has linked the coronavirus to raccoon dogs illegally sold at a market in Wuhan, China, for "the strongest evidence yet that an animal started the pandemic," according to the Atlantic . The virus was found in samples taken from the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market...

China: Now US Is Playing Politics With COVID

Beijing rejects Energy Department assessment that virus likely originated in a lab

(Newser) - China is pushing back against the US Energy Department's conclusion that the COVID pandemic likely started in a Chinese lab . "The origin of the novel coronavirus is a scientific issue and should not be politicized," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning on Monday. Over the weekend,...

Agency Sides With Theory That Lab Leak Sparked Pandemic

Energy Department agrees with FBI's conclusion, for a different reason

(Newser) - The COVID-19 pandemic probably began with a laboratory leak, the Energy Department has decided. The agency, which had not expressed a view on the origin of the coronavirus, added its finding to a previous classified intelligence report sent to the White House and certain members of Congress, the Wall Street ...

China Locks Down 1M in Wuhan
China Locks Down 1M in Wuhan

China Locks Down 1M in Wuhan

'Temporary control measures' brought in after 4 COVID cases detected

(Newser) - A million people in the first city ever to experience a COVID lockdown have been locked down again. As part of China's zero COVID strategy, restrictions were imposed on Wuhan's Jiangxia district after routine testing detected two asymptomatic cases and contact tracing detected two more, the BBC reports....

Pair of COVID Studies Point a Finger at Wuhan Market
Pair of COVID Studies
Land on Same Culprit
new research

Pair of COVID Studies Land on Same Culprit

One mapped locations of infections, the second analyzed genomic diversity of viruses

(Newser) - Two peer-reviewed studies published Tuesday in Science arrive at the same conclusion: Wuhan's Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market was where the COVID pandemic originated. The Los Angeles Times explains that after the lab-leak theory was dismissed last year, scientists pointed out there wasn't a plethora of published data on...

New Studies Refute Idea of Lab Leak for COVID
New COVID Studies:
It Wasn't a Lab Leak
new studies

New COVID Studies: It Wasn't a Lab Leak

Instead, they point to Huanan market as the likely source, but matter is far from settled

(Newser) - Three new studies cast doubt on the notion that COVID originated in a lab leak in China, reports Nature . Instead, two of the studies suggest it's all but certain that the coronavirus began at the Huanan Seafood Market in Wuhan, China, per CNN . The third is less definitive on...

Harvard Prof Who Concealed China Ties Could Get 26 Years

Charles Lieber convicted of 6 counts, including failure to disclose a Chinese bank account

(Newser) - A Harvard professor was convicted Tuesday of lying about his involvement in a Chinese recruitment program as part of the Justice Department's controversial effort to crackdown on Chinese influence in US research. Jurors convicted nanoscientist Charles Lieber, a former chair of Harvard's chemistry department, of two counts of...

Virologist Says WHO Team Got First COVID Case Wrong

After looking at records, interviews Michael Worobey thinks market vendor was first

(Newser) - An expert in tracing the origins of viral epidemics claims to have identified the very first-known case of COVID-19: in a vendor at the Huanan Seafood Market in Wuhan, China. In a March report , a WHO team that had visited China in January concluded the first-known case appeared in a...

Jailed for COVID Reporting, Zhang Zhan 'May Not Survive'

Family of Chinese citizen journalist say she's near death behind bars after hunger strike

(Newser) - Update: Hints that things had deteriorated for the Chinese citizen journalist put in prison for reporting on the coronavirus in Wuhan in early 2020 came over the summer . Now, more sobering news: Zhang Zhan's family says she is not far from dying after going on a hunger strike behind...

WHO Wants to Trace Pandemic to Its Beginning

Standing group also will make plans to deal with other outbreaks

(Newser) - The World Health Organization has tried before to discover the origins of the coronavirus but found no clear answer, at least partly because of a lack of cooperation from China. But the organization launched a second attempt Wednesday by naming a more formal, standing panel of scientists to what it'...

City Where COVID Began Sees Its First Delta Cases

Wuhan, China, plans to test all 11M residents

(Newser) - The delta variant has emerged in the city where the original virus got its start. As a result, the city of Wuhan, China, plans to test all 11 million residents, reports Reuters . Though the coronavirus was first identified in Wuhan in 2019, the city had reported no new local cases...

China's Response to WHO Suggestion: No

Senior health official rebuffs WHO's suggestion on probe into COVID-19 origins

(Newser) - China cannot accept the World Health Organization's plan for the second phase of a study into the origins of COVID-19, a senior Chinese health official said Thursday. Zeng Yixin, the vice minister of the National Health Commission, said he was “rather taken aback" by the call for a...

Fauci to Paul: 'You Do Not Know What You're Talking About'

Both accuse the other of lying in Senate hearing

(Newser) - A recurring clash between the government's top infectious disease doctor and a senator has erupted again on Capitol Hill, with each accusing the other of lying. Dr. Anthony Fauci angrily confronted Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky in testimony before a Senate committee on Tuesday. Fauci rejected Paul's...

New Data Revive Early Theory on Pandemic's Origin

Evolutionary biologist Michael Worobey says SARS-CoV-2 likely originated at seafood market

(Newser) - One of 18 scientists to sign a May letter upping the idea that the novel coronavirus may have leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology says new evidence points in another direction: the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market. "I do think transmission from another species, without a lab escape, is...

Wuhan's Only Foreign Virologist Speaks Out

Danielle Anderson says 'lab leak' theory unlikely given lab's strict rules

(Newser) - The only foreign scientist to conduct research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology's BSL-4 lab says people have the wrong impression of it as likely to enable the escape of a deadly virus. The "lab leak" theory on the coronavirus has not been proven, though a report claimed...

Scientist Recovers Deleted Early COVID Samples

Chinese scientists mysteriously removed them from database

(Newser) - An American researcher says files that could shed more light on the origins of COVID-19 were mysteriously deleted from a database last year. Seattle virologist Jesse Bloom says genetic sequences from more than 200 early COVID cases in Wuhan were submitted to an online database by Chinese researchers in March...

China's 'Bat Lady' Says COVID Didn't Leak From Her Lab

Shi Zhengli says world is 'pouring filth on an innocent scientist'

(Newser) - The theory that COVID-19 leaked from a lab in Wuhan has been getting a lot more attention in recent weeks—and so has the lab's most famous virologist. Dr. Shi Zhengli, nicknamed the "Bat Lady" for her work researching bat coronaviruses, has been the focus of much speculation,...

Biden Steps Up Effort to Trace COVID's Origin

Criticism of WHO's dismissal of lab theory increases

(Newser) - Saying Wednesday that the investigations so far have been inconclusive, President Biden gave intelligence agencies 90 days to find the origins of the coronavirus. Biden said he wants the agencies' "most up-to-date analysis of the origins of COVID-19, including whether it emerged from human contact with an infected animal...

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