"The laboratory creation of this coronavirus is convenient and can be accomplished in approximately six months," the paper's authors, four Chinese virologists who fled to the US earlier this year, wrote.
Li-Meng Yan, the lead author, went a step further in
She told Carlson that her government had "intentionally" released the "man-made virus" — comments that echoed a fringe conspiracy theory that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and President Donald Trump
But a closer look at Yan and her coauthors' work shows they're affiliated with a pair of nonprofits based in New York City, the Rule of Law Society and the Rule of Law Foundation, that were led by the former Trump strategist Steve Bannon before his arrest in August.
Neither organization has any history of publishing scientific or medical research, and the new paper has not been peer-reviewed by other scientists.
Most experts think the coronavirus originated in bats before jumping to people;
Yan's group, however, suggested that people made the virus using existing bat coronaviruses as "a backbone and/or template."
Bannon cofounded both groups with an exiled Chinese billionaire
Bannon was arrested in August on charges that he defrauded donors who gave money to the "We Build The Wall" campaign. In January 2019, helped found both Rule of Law groups with an exiled Chinese billionaire, Guo Wengui.
Steve Bannon, a former chief White House strategist.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Guo also founded the site G News, which has published
Bannon got $1 million in 2018 for a year's worth of "strategic consulting services" involving G News,
Guo fled China for New York in 2014 after the Chinese Communist Party accused him of bribery and fraud. He had
"I know how they treat whistleblowers," she told Fox News.
In her interview with Carlson on Tuesday, Yan said she had evidence that showed how China engineered the virus, adding, "I am the target that Chinese Communist Party wants disappeared."
The University of Hong Kong
'Poppycock dressed up' as science
An illustration of the new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.
Other experts were quick to speak out against the claims in Yan's paper.
Carl Bergstrom, a University of Washington biologist who
There's no evidence supporting the theory that the new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, was genetically engineered.
Those researchers wrote that their work indicated that it "is not a laboratory construct or a purposefully manipulated virus," adding that "the genetic data irrefutably show that SARS-CoV-2 is not derived from any previously used virus backbone."
On Tuesday, the lead author of that study, Kristian Andersen, said Yan's group had cherry-picked data in support of their conclusion, adding that it was "poppycock dressed up as 'science.'"
Twitter, which has a strict policy on tweets containing disputed claims about COVID-19,
The virus probably didn't leak from a lab either
We still don't know how the coronavirus pandemic started, or where — and that uncertainty creates fertile territory for unsubstantiated theories.
Early on, many people thought an
Another theory suggested that the coronavirus had animal origins but that a sample of it stored at the Wuhan Institute of Virology
The Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Researchers at that institute do study infectious diseases, including coronaviruses, which
There's no evidence, however, that the coronavirus came from a sample stored at that lab.
"It's highly unlikely this was a lab accident," Jonna Mazet, a US epidemiologist who has worked with and trained researchers at the Wuhan institute,
Mazet said she helped the staff there develop and implement a "very stringent safety protocol."
What's more, Shi Zhengli, a virologist at the institute, said none of the coronavirus samples that had been stored there matched the new coronavirus' genome.
"That really took a load off my mind," Shi
Pretty much every other scientists have reached the consensus that the virus is naturally occurring, the only uncertainty is whether she's a garden variety 'political asylum' seeker(Gimme dem Greencard) or this.
UK is planning a 2nd shutdown?
Is it a shutdown, or a "shutdown"? Any UK users here have any more info?
Hmmm, the UK is in very deep shit right now huh