On November 12, 2015, Declan Butler made an overview of a published scientific article from November 9, 2015, in Nature Medicine.
It describes in detail how the hybrid version of the Corononvirus was born. It is obtained by a cross of a virus contained in the lung of a bat and the virus that causes SARS (Severe acute respiratory syndrome).
Even then, world scientists were shocked by the hybrid of their American and Chinese counterparts who signed the “invention” and were debating whether the engineering variants of viruses with possible pandemic potential were worth the risks.
Are these scientific discoveries, or biological weapons of mass destruction?
Five years later, the epidemic is present in 70 countries around the world, over 90 thousand are infected, over 3000-deceased, and all traces from 2015 are covered up.
On November 9, 2015, scientists talked about a virus called SHC014, which is found in the lungs of the Rhinolophidae family of bats, commonly known as horseshoe bats inhabiting China.
Researchers created a chemical virus composed of the superficial protein of SHC014 and the “backbone ” of the SARS virus, adapted to grow in mice and imitate human disease.
The cells infected with this “Frankenstein” of bioscience could affect the human Airways, says the report.
The team of scientists experimenting in Wuhan and North Carolina prove that the surface protein of SHC014 has the necessary structure to bind to a critical receptor of human cells and infect them.
The experiments made it clear that the mice became infected, but the virus did not kill them.
In an article published in Nature Medicine on November 9, 2015, scientists tell about a virus called SHC014, which is found in the lungs of the Rhinolophidae family of bats, commonly known as horseshoe bats inhabiting China.
The scientific publication in Nature Medicine was signed by scientists from the Department of Epidemiology at the University of North Carolina, the National Center for Toxicological Studies in Arkansas, and the secret Laboratory for individual pathogens and biological Safety at Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Although the then coronaviruses isolated from bats have failed to contact the critical human receptor, SHC014 is not the first to be able to do so.
In 2013, researchers also reported another coronavirus isolated from the same population of horseshoe bat.
The discoveries of 2015 reinforce the suspicion that the coronaviruses of bats are capable of directly infecting humans (instead of first having to develop into an intermediate animal host), and this may happen more often than previously thought, say scientists.
But other virologists doubt whether the information obtained from the experiment justifies the potential risk and whether it is at all a cause for scientific pride.
However, the degree of any risk can hardly be judged unambiguously.
Simon Wain-Hobson, a virologist from the Pasteur Institute in Paris, points out that
the virus has been created is spreading very well in human cells.
If it is somehow exported outside the walls of the laboratory, it will be tough to predict the trajectory of distribution.
The US Government imposed a moratorium in such dangerous research with an unknown end to the viruses that caused SARS, influenza, and MERS (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome, a deadly disease caused by a virus that is sporadically transmitted from camels to humans).
The latest study (published in Nature Medicine) is already underway before the beginning of the moratorium in the USA and The National Institutes of Health (NIH), allowing it to continue because they estimate that the work is not so risky.
Some of the experiments in the study show that the virus in wild bats can only pose a threat if it develops – and this cannot happen, although it cannot be ruled out at 100%.
The scientists of the team were calm because they discovered that it developed poorly in human cell cultures and did not cause significant disease in mice. In their work, they talk about “unnatural risk.”
The authors of the scientific publication also acknowledge that the funders can think more seriously about resolving such experiments in the future.
The sources that finance such research and the creation of chimeric viruses based on circulating strains could decide that it is a target too risky to be pursued.
They write and add that a discussion is needed on “whether these types of Chemical research on viruses require further investigation into the associated risks ‘.
Of course, the participants in the experiments on the creation of the new mutant, protect their hard work by saying that their research is beneficial.
The findings of the study “transfer this virus from the position of” emerging harmless pathogen “to” candidate who will create a bright and existing danger, “says Peter Daszak, who has co-authored a document from 2013, preceding the extensive publication from 2015.
Daszak is the president of an international network of scientists based in New York (EcoHealth Alliance) that takes samples of viruses from animals and people of entirely new, unknown diseases all over the globe.
According to Daszak, efforts to test hybrid viruses in human cell culture and animal models are limited in what they can say about the threat caused by the unbridled virus.
But he argues that they can help to indicate which pathogens should be prioritized for further study.
Without subsequent experiments, claim the creators of SHC014, the hybrid will still be regarded as a non-threatening.
Five years ago, according to Russian information sources, SHC014 represented a mortal danger for humanity.
Human coronavirus leads to severe acute respiratory syndromes, to typical cases of pneumonia from which thousands of people are dying.
American scientists were not planning to create a deadly virus, but mutation accidentally received in the process of laboratory engineering.
Experts say that such a process can also happen outside the laboratory.