The new information comes weeks after a US Department of Energy intelligence report concluded that the pandemic was most likely caused by an “accidental laboratory leak” from a virology facility in Wuhan. This post is included with fact on- Raccoon Dogs May Have Caused Covid-19 Pandemic. Have a look for details.
According to a group of foreign specialists, a fresh investigation of genetic samples taken from a seafood market in Wuhan, central China, demonstrates the presence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in the raccoon dogs sold there, supporting the idea that the Covid-19 epidemic had a natural start.
As Per the Report
In a report published on Thursday, The New York Times stated that genetic information was gathered from swabs taken inside and outside of the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market beginning in January 2020, “shortly after the Chinese authorities had shut down the market due to suspicions that it was linked to the outbreak of a new virus.”
The new information comes weeks after a US Department of Energy intelligence report concluded that the pandemic was most likely caused by an “accidental laboratory leak” from a virology facility in Wuhan.
The Swab Testing Process
Researchers collected swabs from the walls, floors, metal cages, and carts used to transport animal cages after the animals had been removed from the market, according to the report.
It quoted three scientists who were engaged in the examination as saying, “In samples that came back positive for the coronavirus, the worldwide research team uncovered genetic material belonging to animals, including considerable amounts that were a match for the raccoon dog.
What Report Says
According to the report, the international team contacted the Chinese academics who had uploaded the files after discovering the fresh data and extended an invitation to work together.
The sequences, however, reportedly vanished from GISAID (Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data) after that.
According to the article, the “jumbling together” of genetic information from the animal and the virus does not demonstrate that a raccoon dog was infected with the virus.
Yet even if a raccoon dog had the virus, it might not be obvious that the animal had exposed humans to it. According to the article, either another animal or a person who was already sick with the virus might have transmitted it to a raccoon dog.
Raccoon dogs, fluffy creatures related to foxes and known to be capable of spreading the coronavirus, however, “deposited genetic signatures in the same spot where genetic material from the virus was left,” the researchers said.
The Evidence Saying
The evidence was said to be “compatible” with a scenario in which the virus has spread from a wild animal into people.
However the genetic information from the market provides some of the clearest proof to date of how the virus could have spread from wild animals outside of a lab into people. Also, it appears that Chinese experts have provided a sketchy summary of the data that could add context to how the virus propagated at the Huanan market, according to the report.
Michael Worobey, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Arizona, Kristian Andersen, a virologist at the Scripps Research Institute in California, and Edward Holmes, a biologist at the University of Sydney, made up the international team. The new genetic data mining began last week.
They were particularly interested in one sample. According to the report, it had been seized from a cart connected to a particular stand at the Huanan market that Holmes had visited in 2014.
It was described as “just the kind of situation favourable to the introduction of novel viruses” because the stall had “caged raccoon dogs” on top of a different cage containing birds. The University of Utah’s Stephen Goldstein, a virologist who worked on the new investigation, said: “We were able to find out quite quickly that at least in one of these samples, there was a lot of raccoon dog nucleic acid, along with virus nucleic acid.
“We don’t have an infectious animal, and we can’t show that there was an infected animal at that stall,” Goldstein advised. This is the best we can do, the virologist remarked, “but given that the animals that were in the market at the time were not sampled at all.
In China’s Wuhan Province, the first coronavirus case was announced in December 2019. The World Health Organization reports that there have been 760,360,956 confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide, including 6,873,477 fatalities.