Dr. Fauci denies the NIH funded gain of function studies in Wuhan. But last May, WUWT reported on a published gain of function paper which includes a top Wuhan virologist as an author, and acknowledges NIH funding.
Rand Paul: Dr. Fauci lied to Congress about Wuhan lab research funding
Fauci denies US funded ‘gain of function’ research in China
By Nikolas Lanum | Fox News
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., claimed on Wednesday that Dr. Anthony Fauci lied to Congress when he denied that the National Institute of Health was funding research at the controversial Wuhan lab.
“Dr. Fauci, do you still support funding of the NIH funding of the lab in Wuhan?” he asked the NIH chief.
“Senator Paul, with all due respect, you are entirely, entirely, and completely incorrect,” a clearly irritated Fauci shot back. “The NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain of function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.“
While speaking to co-host Bill Hemmer, Paul elaborated on his allegation and claimed that Dr. Shi Zhengli, the Wuhan-based ‘bat woman’ virologist who researched coronavirus variants in animals, wrote a paper that MIT scientists surmised was referencing gain-of-function research (making pathogens deadlier or more easily transmissible).
Paul claims that the paper acknowledged that their funding came from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), a subset of the NIH where Dr. Fauci is the director.
Read more: https://www.foxnews.com/media/rand-paul-dr-fauci-lied-congress-china-virus-research
WUWT reported the apparent collaboration between US and Chinese researchers on “gain of function” research in May 2020.
The following is a link to a paper which acknowledges NIH funding, and which discusses dangerous gain of function studies, in which animal viruses or human viruses are genetically engineered to add new traits which make the viruses more dangerous to humans. Senior Wuhan virologist Shi Zhengli is one of the authors. The paper contains the warning “the potential to prepare for and mitigate future outbreaks must be weighed against the risk of creating more dangerous pathogens.”.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4797993/ (backup copy here).
So I suggest Senator Rand Paul is on pretty firm ground when he suggests Dr. Fauci might have his facts wrong, on US funding for gain of function studies.
I think it is important to note that gain of function is not an attempt to create a biological weapon, the researchers are trying to simulate what might happen anyway, by turning the clock forward so they can view what Pandemics might emerge in the near future. Viruses continuously genetically engineer themselves, by grabbing pieces of other viruses and incorporating those pieces into the next strain. If researchers discover that say one or two minor changes to an animal virus results in a dangerous human pathogen, they can flag the original virus as a pandemic in waiting, an imminent risk to humans.
But in the process of turning the clock forward, researchers by their own admission risk accidentally releasing the very pandemic they fear will emerge naturally. There is a strong case that such experiments are simply too dangerous to perform.
This evidence of a connection between the NIH, Wuhan and gain of function studies is not proof that Covid-19 is the unfortunate outcome of an insanely high risk joint Chinese US virus study which leaked out of the laboratory. But I think it is reasonable to conclude that Dr. Fauci needs to answer a lot more questions, and clarify his answer on NIH funding for gain of function studies.
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