U.S. vicious slanders on China over COVID-19 origins tracing and the truth (part 4)

Source: Xinhua| 2021-11-06 15:38:30|Editor: huaxia

Vicious slander 11: In 2015, Baric worked with the Wuhan Institute of Virology to publish an article claiming that the bat coronavirus was successfully used to construct a chimeric virus that is highly pathogenic to humans.

Facts and truth: Baric acquired the technique to synthesize coronaviruses more than ten years ago. He did obtain the genetic sequence of the biological samples collected from bat specimens from Shi Zhengli and her team, but the virus modification and mouse infection experiments were all carried out at the University of North Carolina in the United States. Baric did not provide the chimeric virus he constructed to Shi's team.

◆In 2008, Baric co-authored a paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, detailing the method of designing, synthesizing and modifying a SARS-like coronavirus. "In this study, we have combined phylogenetic and bioinformatics analyses, large-scale cDNA synthesis, chimeric gene design, and reverse genetics to generate a consensus Bat-SCoV. Successful recovery of the infectious chimeric virus ... demonstrates the plasticity of the CoV type I glycoprotein," read the abstract of the paper. "To test a possible route of emergence from the noncultivable Bat-SCoV to human SARS-CoV, we designed a consensus Bat-SCoV genome and replaced the Bat-SCoV Spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) with the SARS-CoV RBD (Bat-SRBD). Bat-SRBD was infectious in cell culture and in mice and was efficiently neutralized by antibodies specific for both bat and human CoV Spike proteins."


◆In 2013, when the team of Shi Zhengli detected the genome sequence of several coronaviruses from a bat cave in southwest China's Yunnan Province, Baric approached her, expressing his hope to obtain the samples of these coronaviruses for research. Shi shared her findings with Baric. With his virus modification technique, Baric and his team created in his laboratory in the United States a new coronavirus that can infect humans. In this research, the modification and the mice infection experiments were all conducted in the University of North Carolina. The constructed chimeric virus was not provided for Shi's team. The finding of the research was published on the "Nature Medicine" journal in 2015.


◆In 2016, Baric and researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Harvard Medical School and other institutions published a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. The conclusion of the paper stated that the chimeric virus they created using SARS-like coronavirus as a template showed replicability in mouse experiments.


Vicious slander 12: In 2018, the Wuhan Institute of Virology planned to "release genetically modified coronaviruses" into a bat cave and applied for funding from the United States, but the application was rejected.

Facts and truth: What the Wuhan Institute of Virology planned to "release" into the bat cave were never "coronaviruses," but a kind of atomized particle "vaccines" against the coronaviruses produced through genetic engineering techniques. The atomized particles can cause immune responses in bats, thereby preventing bats from being infected with the coronaviruses and then spreading the viruses to humans. This is the bidding requirement of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the U.S. Department of Defense.

◆The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the U.S. Department of Defense once held a tender for its PREEMPT program, namely the "Preventing Emerging Pathogenic Threats" program which seeks to "preserve military readiness by protecting against the infectious disease threat" for U.S. soldiers sent to overseas countries. Organized by the U.S. EcoHealth Alliance, the Wuhan Institute of Virology, along with laboratories of scientists from the United States and other countries including Baric, participated in the bidding.

The Wuhan Institute of Virology has not participated in any experiments involving "genetic modification" of viruses and recombination of viral proteins in this bidding project. These molecular virological operations were mainly carried out by Baric and his laboratory. The role of the Wuhan Institute of Virology in the bidding document was mainly to carry out "field work," namely collecting virus samples in the field, analyze which viruses are posing a threat of infecting humans after mutation, and then extract the genetic sequences of relevant viruses and give them to U.S. laboratories such as Baric's to conduct further research on molecular virology.

3. On the U.S. false claim of China covering up the truth at the beginning of the outbreak of COVID-19

Vicious slander 13: On the outset of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Chinese government delayed the disease reporting and concealed the truth.

Facts and truth: By upholding a scientific attitude and following the laws of epidemiology, the Chinese government promptly shared the virus genetic sequence and epidemic information with the World Health Organization and the international community. It has also informed the international community including the United States about the epidemic situation in a timely, open and transparent manner.

◆The novel coronavirus was an unknown virus, and getting to know it needs a process. Any government must be very cautious when dealing with a public health crisis, and should go through studies, comparisons and scientific demonstrations. As the first country to report the COVID-19 epidemic, China needs more careful scientific research. To jump to conclusions without research is irresponsible to science and the people.

◆As a signatory of the International Health Regulations of the World Health Organization, China has always performed its duties and obligations under the International Health Regulations in an open, transparent and responsible manner. In accordance with the "Frontier Health and Quarantine Law of the People's Republic of China" and the "Law of the People's Republic of China on the Prevention and Treatment of Infectious Diseases," China has scientifically adopted and adjusted health and quarantine measures at border exits in a timely manner to strictly prevent the spread of the epidemic across borders, without any concealment or delay.

◆As China owns experience in responding to SARS, it has been extremely vigilant about the epidemic. After discovering this unidentified pneumonia, it immediately began scientific investigation and comparison, promptly isolated the novel coronavirus strain, obtained the virus genetic sequence as early as possible, and reported the genetic sequence to the World Health Organization. After the experts made a scientific conclusion that the disease can spread from person to person, the Chinese government immediately declared lockdown of the city of Wuhan, which has a population of more than 10 million. International experts generally believe that China has acted in the quickest manner possible. (see the white paper "Fighting COVID-19: China in Action" for details.)



◆On Jan. 3, 2020, China notified the United States of epidemic information and prevention and control measures for the first time.

On Jan. 10, the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the Wuhan Institute of Virology and other professional institutions have initially developed test kits, and Wuhan immediately tested all relevant cases admitted to the hospital. Heads of the National Health Commission and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention held phone conversations respectively with the chief of the World Health Organization on the epidemic response, and exchanged relevant information.

Starting from Jan. 11, 2020, China reported the epidemic information to the World Health Organization and others on a daily basis.

On Jan. 12, 2020, Wuhan's municipal health commission changed the name of "viral pneumonia of unknown cause" to "novel coronavirus pneumonia" for the first time in its information report. The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, and the Wuhan Institute of Virology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, as designated agencies by the National Health Commission, submitted the information of the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus to the World Health Organization, which was published in the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID) and shared globally. The National Health Commission shared the genetic sequence information of the novel coronavirus with the World Health Organization.

On Jan. 13, 2020, the National Health Commission held a meeting to guide Hubei Province and the Wuhan city to further enhance epidemic control measures, strengthen temperature monitoring of personnel at ports and stations, and reduce crowd gatherings. The official website of the World Health Organization issued a statement on the discovery of the novel coronavirus cases in Thailand, pointing out that China has shared the results of genetic sequence, enabling more countries to quickly diagnose patients. Delegations from China's Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan went to Wuhan to study the epidemic prevention and control work.

On Jan. 18-19, 2020, the National Health Commission of China organized a high-level national group of medical and prevention experts to Wuhan to inspect the epidemic prevention and control work. On Jan. 19, the high-level expert group, through a careful study, confirmed in the midnight that the novel coronavirus can spread from person to person.

On Jan. 27, 2020, then U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted that the United States was in close communication with China on the virus (coronavirus).

On Feb. 11, 2020, at the invitation of experts from the influenza department of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, experts from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention held a teleconference with them to communicate and share information on epidemic prevention and control.

On Feb. 13, 2020, officials of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services wrote to heads of the National Health Commission of China to communicate on the arrangements for cooperation in health and epidemic prevention and control between the two sides.

Starting from Feb. 16, 2020, a China-WHO joint expert inspection team composed of 25 experts from China, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Nigeria, Russia, Singapore, the United States and the World Health Organization used nine days to visit Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Wuhan and other places to conduct field investigations.

◆When attending the 33rd African Union Summit in Ethiopia,Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, president of the 74th Session of the United Nations General Assembly said that Chinese agencies stationed at the United Nations have reported details of the epidemic to the United Nations, and the Chinese government has released information on the epidemic in a timely and transparent manner, allowing the outside world to know clear of the ongoing epidemic situation in China, which has been conducive to multilateral cooperation to prevent the epidemic from spreading. (more)

KEY WORDS: US,Origins Tracing,Slanders