“People a year ago who said that it was probably from nature, it’s really unlikely that it came from a lab, maybe a year ago, that kind of statement made a lot of sense because it ‘was the most likely scenario,’ said Gottlieb, the Prime. head of the Food and Drug Administration. “But we haven’t found the true source of this virus. “
Scientists still have not found definitive proof that the virus originated from an animal, he said. Along with other coronaviruses, SARS and MERS, researchers were able to identify the animal from which these diseases emerged at this stage of these epidemics.
“It’s not for lack of trying, there has been an exhaustive research,” Gottlieb said.
A previously undisclosed U.S. intelligence report found researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology sought hospital care after falling ill “with symptoms consistent with both Covid-19 and common seasonal illness” , The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing the report.
Gottlieb said the growing number of reports provided an increasing amount of circumstantial evidence supporting the theory that the virus could have escaped from a lab.
“The question for a lot of people is going to be when there are too many coincidences, when does it seem like there is too much to suggest it could be from a lab,” Gottlieb said.
Gottlieb said we are unlikely to ever know for sure. Unless there is a whistleblower or regime change in China, he said any evidence to support the hypothesis of a lab leak is unlikely to surface.
The World Health Organization has said on several occasions that the virus likely originated from a host animal.
But last week CDC director Dr Rochelle Walensky admitted it could have come from a lab as “a possibility.”
Most coronaviruses, however, “usually come from an animal origin,” Walensky said in Senate testimony after saying she had not seen enough data to give her opinion on the origin of the pandemic. current.
Global health officials will meet soon to further investigate the origins of the virus.