A report from The Wall Street Journal says the origins of Covid-19 may remain a mystery forever.
In interviews with bat experts, including Linfa Wang, a professor in the emerging infectious diseases program at Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore, the paper describes the continuous hunt for where the coronavirus started.
According to Wang, scientists all over the world may never succeed.
According to emails obtained by The Washington Post June, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci was corresponding with a scientist as early as January 2020 about the possibility that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid, was engineered in a lab.
Scientists suggested last year that the most probable explanation is the SARS-CoV-2 virus's "natural emergence:" it leaped from bats, or an intermediary species, to humans in a random occurrence sometime in 2019. Many people still believe this, and some have grown even more convinced in this route.
However, in recent weeks, more experts, including those who had previously been silent, have spoken out about the prospect that the virus may have escaped from a laboratory in China, arguing that this scenario has not been thoroughly examined.
The pandemic has demonstrated that research is critical for dealing with the disease, but even specialists may make mistakes. For example, the World Health Organization stated in January 2020 that there was "no clear evidence" of SARS-CoV-2 transmission between humans.
In February 2020, the U.S. Surgeon General informed Americans that face masks were ineffective in stopping the spread of the disease. It is likely, therefore, that some scientists' denial of a laboratory origin of the virus was premature in the midst of the rush of discoveries in the early stages of a worldwide outbreak.
However, Wang feels that the search for the origins has been hampered by political barriers. China denied admission to a team led by the World Health Organization that arrived in January to investigate the pandemic.
"No one wants you to find a virus in their country," Wang told WSJ.