'Rare' genome sequencing almost certainly proves Covid WAS deliberately made in a Chinese lab before it leaked to the world: Another expert study makes bombshell claim
Two U.S. experts have penned a damning essay saying the genome sequencing of COVID-19 strongly suggests that the virus was manufactured inside a Chinese laboratory. Dr. Stephen Quay (top right) and Richard Muller (bottom right), a physics professor at the University of California Berkeley, made the claim in The Wall Street Journal on Sunday, amid growing speculation that the coronavirus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV). 'The most compelling reason to favor the lab leak hypothesis is firmly based in science,' the experts wrote, stating that 'COVID-19 has a genetic footprint that has never been observed in a natural coronavirus.' A graphic (left) shows how the coronavirus' genetic code varies to its closest known relative
In the op-ed, the men say their proof lies in genome sequencing, or analyzing the DNA, of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
There are 36 DNA segments - made up of three-letter 'words' - that viruses use to make an amino acid known as L-arginine.
L-arginine helps make proteins but is also often used in so-called 'gain of function' research, which alters viruses to make them more transmissible and more deadly.
The new virus contains a segment called CGG-CGG, which is considered rare even in experiments in which researchers are trying to manipulate virus.
But even more telling is that this combination has never been found naturally in any other type of coronavirus, including in SARS and MERS, both of which are cousins of the new virus.
'A virus simply cannot pick up a sequence from another virus if that sequence isn't present in any other virus,' Quay and Muller wrote.
'The CGG-CGG combination has never been found naturally. That means the common method of viruses picking up new skills, called recombination, cannot operate here.'
The essay comes after an explosive study last week claimed that Chinese scientists created COVID-19 in the Wuhan lab, then tried to cover their tracks by reverse-engineering versions of the virus to make it look like it evolved naturally from bats.
SARS-CoV-2, which causes Covid, carries all the information needed for it to spread in around 30,000 letters of genetic code, known as RNA. But it is the only coronavirus of its type to carry 12 unique letters that allow its spike protein — which it uses to bind to human cells and infect people — to be activated by a common enzyme called furin, which in turn makes it better at invading neighbouring cells. The top bar shows the section of the 30,000 letters that accounts for the spike protein (purple). The middle purple bar is the spike protein section, with the white line highlighted being the location of the 12 letters: CCUCGGCGGGCA. The bottom bars show how that specific section of the virus differs ever so slightly to RaTG13, the closest known relative of SARS-CoV-2
Dr. Stephen Quay and Richard Muller have penned a damning essay claiming the genome sequencing of COVID-19 strongly suggests that the virus was manufactured inside a Chinese laboratory
reports predict that American life will not return to normal for more than a year, until a vaccine is available.