FACT CHECK: COVID-19 Whistleblower Li-Meng Yan Releases Paper With Other Scientists 'Suggesting Sophisticated Laboratory Modification'

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Along with COVID-19 whistleblower and virologist Dr. Li-Meng Yan, other scientists are making the same strong claim that the coronavirus did not come from nature, but was instead created by scientists in a Wuhan laboratory in the long-awaited new paper.

Li-Meng Yan COVID-19 whistleblower

(Photo : Screengrab from Loose Women)

Li-Meng Yan's Paper

According to a Newsweek report, the paper was entitled "Unusual Features of the SARS-CoV-2 Genome Suggesting Sophisticated Laboratory Modification Rather Than Natural Evolution and Delineation of Its Probable Synthetic Route" and has been published on pre-print website Zenodo.

The paper was authored by Yan, who became famous overnight due to her strong claims after fleeing China to come to the US.

Yan was accompanied by three researchers affiliated with the Rule of Law of Society, which is not particularly known for working on infectious diseases.

Moreover, it appears as though the Society was founded by a former POTUS adviser that was recently charged by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for fraud, along with Guo Wengui, a Chinese businessman who fled China back in 2014 due to bribery charges and more.

With that, many are skeptical about the legitimacy of the paper.

Read Also: Whistleblower Li-Meng Yan Claims 'COVID as China-Made Virus,' While Other Scientists Oppose, Calling it 'Conspiracy'

'No Credibility in Its Current Form'

Since speaking up about the apparent origin of COVID-19, many experts around the world have decided to share their thoughts about the controversial virologist, including her colleagues, with many saying Yan's research has no scientific basis.

Now that the paper has been released, the news outlet consulted six leading experts in evolutionary biology and infectious disease, and all of them have the same reaction: the paper's scientific case is weak.

"This pre-print report cannot be given any credibility in its current form," said Andrew Preston, a microbial pathogenesis expert from the University of Bath in the UK.

For those who are unaware, papers that have been published in pre-print websites have not gone through rigorous peer review, which is required for papers to be published in scientific journals, meaning the paper isn't precisely identified as a fact.

Moreover, the paper's authors have not provided any references to support their claims, which is critical for any research paper.

What Experts Have to Say

Another scientist Newsweek talked to also pointed out an issue with the author's explanation of the coronavirus' genomic analysis, such as pointing to "restriction sites" in the genetic sequence of the COVID-19 virus as evidence that the virus was modified.

Arinjay Banarjee, a virologist at the McMaster University, said, "All DNA sequences in nature have restriction sites, and it is not surprising that the SARS-CoV-2 genome also has restriction sites. The evidence presented here is anecdotal."

Banarjee is also skeptical about Yan's claims that the furin-cleavage, a part of the coronavirus' protein spike, was deliberately added to the virus.

Meanwhile, a University of California evolutionary biologist, Jonathan Eisen, said that the paper is "filled with unsubstantiated claims," while another evolutionary biologist from the University of Washington, Carl Bergstrom, called the paper "bizarre and unfounded."

Unfortunately, despite previous evidence that does back up the prevailing theory that COVID-19 came from bats, many still believe Yan's thesis and other coronavirus theories have offered no scientific evidence.

Read Also: Chinese Whistleblower Li-Meng Yan Gets Twitter Ban After Publishing 'Man-Made COVID-19' Report--Finds Support From US Army Doctor

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Written by: Nhx Tingson

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