Research linking COVID-19 to lab ignored by mainstream media, medical journals, scientist says

A prominent physician says the mainstream media and medical community shunned early evidence COVID-19 may have originated in a lab, adding that gain-of-function research could pose a risk to humanity if continued without more guardrails.

Dr. Steven Quay, a physician and scientist with hundreds of published scientific articles, 87 patents across 22 different fields of medicine and the founder of Seattle-based biopharmaceutical company Atossa Therapeutics Inc., shared his fears in an op-ed published in Newsweek Tuesday.

Quay wrote that when he first investigated the genetic sequence of SARS-CoV-2 in January 2020, it was evident the virus had been artificially manufactured with a genetic feature not found in nature. That feature is known as a furin cleavage site (FCS).

Quay also noted how, in late 2020, he conducted an analysis that determined, with a 99% probability, that SARS-CoV-2 was not naturally derived, but rather derived from a laboratory.

Despite his findings, Quay says he was ignored by mainstream media outlets, and his research was rejected by peer-reviewed journals.

It felt like they were refusing to engage with this type of research, and then in public were saying: ‘Well there’s no peer-reviewed data that shows SARS-CoV-2 came from a lab,'” Quay wrote. “In my opinion, they were gatekeeping that information in a very immoral fashion.”

Even though the notion of a lab leak is more widely accepted today, Quay insisted it is still not widely accepted to claim there is evidence the virus was genetically manipulated using gain-of-function research, and definitely not to question whether it was part of a bioweapons program.

Quay said that, more recently, he conducted an analysis of genetic material “uploaded to the GenBank system of the National Institutes of Health from labs all over the world” to identify current gain-of-function research experiments that may be taking place.

Through that analysis, Quay said he found evidence of three types of gain-of-function experiments being conducted. One of those experiments included the Nipah virus, which is estimated to have around 60 – 80% lethality, according to Quay. COVID’s lethality was about 1%.

Quay is developing a “mathematical model” to help predict the dangers associated with these types of gain-of-function experiments to determine its possible impact on humanity.

I predict our model will show that people are operating in that space right now. My current estimate is that any virus with above about a 10 percent lethality and the same transmissibility as SARS-CoV-2 would end civilization for many centuries; that’s what my gut is saying from all of this experience,” Quay wrote in his Op-Ed. “I don’t feel the dangers of nuclear war are even close to the dangers of genetically modified viruses. Two atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and affected hundreds of thousands of people—but the COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone on the planet.”

Quay argued he sees “no benefit” from gain-of-function research and is pushing hard for guardrails to be implemented around it.

Among the guardrails recommended by Quay is the implementation of institutional review boards for gain-of-function research experiments.

I’ve invented seven drugs and anytime I want to work on humans — any test I want to do on a human — I have to get permission from people in the community where the clinical trial is being done. They form a board, I explain the risks and benefits, and they either let me do the human research, they modify what I’m doing, or they tell me I can’t do it,” Quay told The National Desk (TND). “You put gain-of-function into that rubric and we will never have a dangerous experience because there is no benefit in these kinds of experiments, so they would not be able to convince a group of their peers, you know their neighbors literally, that these experiments should go forward.”

Quay also suggested adding export controls to the tools used for gain-of-function research, for which there are currently no regulations.

“In my opinion, if this type of research continues we will see a virus worse than COVID-19 in our lifetime,” Quay concluded. “If we don’t change anything, I believe it’s only a matter of time.”

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