Scientist Finds Early Virus Sequenc That Had Been Mysteriously Deleted

Scientist Finds Early Virus Sequenc That Had Been Mysteriously Deleted
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Islam News – About a year ago, genetic sequences from more than 200 viruses that caused early cases of Covid-19 in Wuhan, China, disappeared from an online scientific database.

Now, by rooting through files stored on Google Cloud, a researcher in Seattle reports that he has recovered 13 of those original sequences — intriguing new information for discerning when and how the virus may have spilled over from a bat or another animal into humans.

The new analysis, released on Tuesday, bolsters suggestions that a variety of coronaviruses may have been circulating in Wuhan before the initial outbreaks linked to animal and seafood markets in December 2019. It has not yet been peer-reviewed or published in a scientific journal.

The study neither strengthens nor discounts the hypothesis that the pathogen leaked out of a Wuhan lab, but it does raise questions about why the original sequences were deleted.

Context: The virologist who wrote the report, Jesse Bloom, belongs to an outspoken group of scientists who have called for more research into how the pandemic began.

Source: The New York Times

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