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In Wall Street Journal Op-ed, Doctor and Scientist Say Evidence Indicates COVID-19 'Escaped' from Wuhan Lab

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The theory that the COVID-19 worldwide pandemic was caused by a pathogen escaping from the Wuhan Institute of Virology is rapidly gaining new support from researchers.  

Now a medical doctor and a former scientist have gone on record saying "the COVID-19 pathogen has a genetic footprint that has never been observed in a natural coronavirus."

In a new op-ed for The Wall Street Journal, Dr. Steven Quay, founder of Atossa Therapeutics, and Richard Muller, a former senior scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, write "the most compelling reason to favor the lab leak hypothesis is firmly based in science. In particular, consider the genetic fingerprint of CoV-2, the novel coronavirus responsible for the disease COVID-19."

Quay and Muller note "the coronavirus, with all its random possibilities, took the rare and unnatural combination used by human researchers—implies that the leading theory for the origin of the coronavirus must be laboratory escape."

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The pair also explains there's more "scientific evidence that points to CoV-2's gain-of-function (research) 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."

As CBN News reported, British intelligence services also said last week the theory of a lab leak is "feasible," even though they once dismissed the idea altogether. 

One British intelligence officer told The London Times, "There might be pockets of evidence that take us one way, and evidence that takes us another way. The Chinese will lie either way. I don't think we will ever know." 

The lab leak theory has garnered so much support that Facebook said late last month it would no longer remove claims from its apps that COVID-19 could be man-made or manufactured in a lab. The social media platform says it's taking the step "in light of ongoing investigations into the origin of COVID-19 and in consultation with public health experts."

Since the pandemic began, Facebook has been cracking down on posts that its so-called "fact-checkers" disagreed with. It's been changing what it allows on the topic and revising what it bans after attempting to definitively label some information as false, even though an official cause of COVID-19 has never been verified.

In February, Facebook announced a host of new claims it would be prohibiting – including speculation that COVID-19 might have been created in a Chinese lab.  About the same time, the World Health Organization said it was "extremely unlikely" the virus spread from a lab leak, according to the BBC.  Leading health experts believed the transmission of the virus had been from animal to human, possibly from a wet market in Wuhan, but no actual evidence of an animal infection with CoV-2 was ever located.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases, and chief medical advisor to the President has found himself in hot water after released emails show his early knowledge and handling of the pandemic. Republican critics want him fired after the pre-pandemic emails from Fauci such as one saying masks don't work against COVID-19 because he later changed his tune and adamantly promoted masks. 

The emails are dated from January to June of 2020 and offer a glimpse into the outbreak's early days and Fauci's conflicting messages about the virus. 

Undeterred, Fauci hit back at Republicans who accused him of shifting opinions on the idea COVID-19 emerged in a Wuhan lab. The theory gained further traction last month after reports of researchers there being hospitalized in late 2019, well before any broader outbreak. 

Fauci, who admits the NIH earmarked $600,000 for the lab which conducted "gain of function" research, now wants a more rigorous investigation into the origin of the virus. 

Sen. Rand Paul told CBN News recently that doctors like Fauci might have had a motive for downplaying the lab theory.

"I think that he's not being honest with the American public," Paul said. "NIH and Dr. Fauci have been funding Wuhan Research. They do it through an intermediary called EcoHealth – interesting when they investigated whether this virus came out of a lab or occurred naturally, they hired the head of EcoHealth to be in charge of the investigation. So the guy who was funding Wuhan lab was put in charge of investigating whether Wuhan lab leaked the virus." 

"The people who supported funding for gain-of-function, the creation of super viruses, who supported funding for the Wuhan institute, should immediately be relieved of their responsibilities," said Sen. Paul. "Dr. Fauci should go."

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About The Author

Steve Warren is a senior multimedia producer for CBN News. Warren has worked in the news departments of television stations and cable networks across the country. In addition, he also worked as a producer-director in television production and on-air promotion. A Civil War historian, he authored the book The Second Battle of Cabin Creek: Brilliant Victory. It was the companion book to the television documentary titled Last Raid at Cabin Creek currently streaming on Amazon Prime. He holds an M.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and a B.A. in Communication from the University of