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Gain of Function Mutation – An Engineered Doomsday?


This is part 2 of my previous article. 

In Part 1 I covered the failure of the World Health Organisation’s COVID-19 investigatory team to obtain anything significant from the Chinese authorities on their widely anticipated mission to Wuhan and the fact that 3 of the team were subsequently “vetted and approved” by the Chinese Government.


But the thing that really piqued my interest was one of China’s “chosen delegates” Peter Daszak, Director of EcoHealth Alliance and the fact he had collaborated with the NIAID and Zhengli Shi/Linfa Wang in Wuhan and who allegedly played an instrumental role in directing NIH funds to Shi’s Wuhan lab for Gain of Function research. 

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The Lab-Leak Hypothesis – Gain of Function

“Gain of Function” experiments — are aimed to create new, more virulent, infectious strains of diseases in an effort to predict and defend against threats that might arise.  For years people have contended this type of virus experimentation might lead to a disastrous pandemic.  

Many people dismiss this notion, they believe that the coronavirus arose naturally, “zoonotically,” from animals, without having been previously studied, or hybridised, or sluiced through cell cultures, or otherwise worked on by trained professionals.  

For decades, scientists have been hot-wiring viruses and have developed ingenious methods of evolutionary acceleration and recombination, they’ve learned how to trick viruses, (coronaviruses in particular) into moving quickly from one species of animal to another or from one type of cell culture to another. 

Virologists who carried out these experiments have accomplished feats of genetic transmutation, there have been very few publicised accidents over the years. But there have been some and we were warned repeatedly that the intentional creation of new microbes that combine virulence with heightened transmissibility “pose extraordinary risks to the public”.

They’ve made machines that mix and mingle the viral code for bat diseases with the code for human diseases — diseases like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), which arose in China in 2003 and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which broke out a decade later. 

High-containment laboratories have a whispered history of near misses. Scientists are people, people have clumsy moments and poke themselves and get bitten by the enraged animals they are trying to nasally inoculate. Machines can create invisible aerosols, and cell solutions can become contaminated. Waste systems don’t always work properly. Things can go wrong in a hundred different ways

High Security Virology labs


In Wuhan, where COVID-19 was first diagnosed there are 3 high-security virology labs, 1 of which held in its freezers the most comprehensive inventory of sampled bat viruses in the world.  

Of the Beijing Virology Institute, the WHO’s safety investigators wrote, in May 2004, that they had serious concerns about biosafety procedures. By one account a SARS storage room in the Beijing lab was so crowded that the refrigerator holding live virus was moved out to the hallway. 

United Kingdom

Porton Down is the UK’s top secret laboratory, scientists carry out research into chemical weapons and deadly diseases.  Based 5 miles outside Salisbury, in Wiltshire, it is highly secretive, under armed guard and is very hard to get into and for good reason.

The laboratories are where some of the country’s top scientists carry out research into the world’s most dangerous pathogens – diseases that can kill us.  Ebola, plague and anthrax are among the life-threatening diseases under study at this secluded base.

United States

Fort Detrick is a United States Army Futures Command installation located in Frederick, Maryland.  Historically the centre of the U.S. biological weapons program from 1943 to 1969. 

In the anthrax pilot plant at Camp Detrick in 1951, a microbiologist, attempting to perfect the “foaming process” of high-volume production, developed a fever and died.  

In 1964, veterinary worker Albert Nickel fell ill after being bitten by a lab animal.  His wife wasn’t told that he had Machupo virus, or Bolivian hemorrhagic fever. “I watched him die through a little window to his quarantine room at the Detrick infirmary,” she said.

Since the discontinuation of that program, it has hosted most elements of the United States biological defense program

As of early 2010, Fort Detrick supports a multi-governmental community that conducts biomedical research and development.  The lab is known to research pathogens such as Ebola and Smallpox. 

In August 2019, its deadly germ research operations were abruptly shut down following serious safety violations, in particular relating to the disposal of dangerous materials. However, that was not the end of the story for chimeric research. 

The National Institutes of Health had a moral, social and potentially legal reason to object to research but the letters that were sent to the researchers essentially said “you are receiving notice that we are telling you to stop” – but when you look at the bottom of the notice it basically says keep on going….

When the heat gets hot what do you do – you offshore the research – you fund the Wuhan Institute of Virology to do the stuff that sounds like it is getting a little edgy with respect to its legality and morality.  Do you do it straight away – no you run the money through a series of cover organisations to make it look as though you are funding a US operation which then sub-contracts the Wuhan Institute of Virology.  

The US could say China did it, China could say the US did it and the thing is that both of them are almost telling the truth

Antony Fauci NIAID/Ralph Baric CDC

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Anthony Fauci and Ralph Baric at the Centre of Disease Control and a laundry list of people wanted to take credit for inventing coronavirus.  In 2002 the coronavirus was seen as an exploitable mechanism.

Moving up the NIH Funding Ladder – “Emerging Viruses” 

AIDS, fatal and terrifying and politically charged, brought on a new era in government-guided vaccine research, under the guidance of Anthony Fauci, a virologist at Rockefeller University.  Stephen S. Morse, began giving talks on “emerging viruses” — other plagues that might be in the process of coming out of “nature’s woodwork”. 

This new, useful term, emerging, began to glow in the research papers of some coronavirologists, who were out of the spotlight, working on common colds and livestock diseases. The term was useful because it was fluid a quality that was helpful when applying for research grants. 

After SARS appeared in 2003, Ralph Baric’s laboratory moved up the NIH funding ladderSARS was a “dual use” organism — a security threat and a zoonotic threat at the same time. 

In 2006, Baric wrote a long, fairly creepy paper on the threat of “weaponisable” viruses. 

Synthetic biology had made possible new kinds of viral “weapons of mass disruption,” he wrote, involving, for example, “rapid production of numerous candidate bioweapons that can be simultaneously released,” a scattershot terror tactic Baric called the  ”survival of the fittest approach.”

Baric hoped to find a SARS vaccine, but he couldn’t; he kept looking for it, year after year, supported by the NIH, long after the disease itself had been contained. It wasn’t really gone, Baric believed.  Like other epidemics that pop up and then disappear, as he told a university audience some years later, “they don’t go extinct. They are waiting to return.” 

 Interspecies Transfer – “no-see’m method”

In 2006, Baric, Yount, and 2 other scientists were granted a patent for their invisible method of fabricating a full-length infectious clone using the seamless, no-see’m method. 

This research originally started in 1995 when Baric and Yount at the University of North Carolina described in an early paper how their lab was able to train a coronavirus, MHV, which causes hepatitis in mice, to jump species. 

“It is clear that MHV can rapidly alter its species specificity and infect rats and primates,” Baric said.  A lowly mouse ailment was morphed into an emergent threat that might potentially cause nerve damage in primates. That is, nerve damage in us.

A few years later, in a further round of “interspecies transfer” experimentation, Baric’s scientists introduced their mouse coronavirus into flasks that held a suspension of African-green-monkey cells, human cells, and pig-testicle cells. Then, in 2002, they announced something even more impressive: They’d found a way to create a full-length infectious clone of the entire mouse-hepatitis genome. 

Their “infectious construct” replicated itself just like the real thing, they wrote.  Not only that, but they’d figured out how to perform their assembly seamlessly, without any signs of human handiwork. 

Nobody would know if the virus had been fabricated in a laboratory or grown in nature. 

By 2006, it wasn’t a clone of the mouse-hepatitis virus — it was a clone of the entire deadly human SARS virus, the one that had emerged from Chinese bats, via civets, in 2002. The Baric Lab came to be known by some scientists as “the Wild Wild West.” 

In 2007, Baric said that we had entered “the golden age of coronavirus genetics.”

A New, Non-Natural Risk

In 2011, Dutch scientist, Ron Fouchier, using grant money from Fauci’s group at NIH, created a mutant form of highly pathogenic avian influenza, H5N1, and passaged it 10 times through ferrets in order to prove that he could “force” (his word) this potentially fatal disease to infect mammals, including humans, “via aerosols or respiratory droplets.” Fouchier said his findings indicated that these avian influenza viruses, thus forced, “pose a risk of becoming pandemic in humans.”

This experiment was too much for some scientists:  Why, out of a desire to prove that something extremely infectious could happen, would you make it happen? And why would the U.S. government feel compelled to pay for it to happen? 

Late in 2011, Marc Lipsitch of the Harvard School of Public Health got together with several other dismayed onlookers to bang the gong for caution. 

On January 8, 2012, the New York Times published a scorcher of an editorial, “An Engineered Doomsday.” “We cannot say there would be no benefits at all from studying the virus,” they said. “But the consequences, should the virus escape, are too devastating to risk.”

These gain-of-function experiments were an important part of the NIH’s approach to vaccine development, and Anthony Fauci was reluctant to stop funding them. 

Baric, in North Carolina, was not happy. He had a number of gain-of-function experiments with pathogenic viruses in progress.  Baric and a former colleague from Vanderbilt University wrote a long letter to an NIH review board expressing their “profound concerns.” “This decision will significantly inhibit our capacity to respond quickly and effectively to future outbreaks of SARS-like or MERS-like coronaviruses. They wrote. The funding ban was itself dangerous, they argued. “Emerging coronaviruses in nature do not observe a mandated pause.”

Hoping to smooth over controversy by showing due diligence, the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity, founded in the BioShield era under President Bush, paid a consulting firm, Gryphon Scientific, to write a report on gain-of-function research, which by now was simply referred to as GoF. 

In chapter 6 of this dissertation, published in April 2016, the consultants take up the question of coronaviruses. “Increasing the transmissibility of the coronaviruses could significantly increase the chance of a global pandemic due to a laboratory accident,” they wrote.

The Cambridge Working Group continued to write letters of protest and plead for restraint and sanity

Steven Salzberg, a professor of biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins, said, “We have enough problems simply keeping up with the current flu outbreaks — and now with Ebola — without scientists creating incredibly deadly new viruses that might accidentally escape their labs.” 

David Relman of Stanford Medical School said, “It is unethical to place so many members of the public at risk and then consult only scientists — or, even worse, just a small subset of scientists — and exclude others from the decision-making and oversight process.” 

Richard Ebright wrote that creating and evaluating new threats very seldom increases security: “Doing so in biology — where the number of potential threats is nearly infinite, and where the asymmetry between the ease of creating threats and the difficulty of addressing threats is nearly absolute — is especially counterproductive.” “The only impact of this work,” he said, “is the creation, in a lab, of a new, non-natural risk.”

Lynn Klotz wrote, “Awful as a pandemic brought on by the escape of a variant H5N1 virus might be, it is SARS that now presents the greatest risk. The worry is less about recurrence of a natural SARS outbreak than of yet another escape from a laboratory researching it to help protect against a natural outbreak.” 

Nariyoshi Shinomiya, a professor of physiology and nano-medicine at the National Defense Medical College in Japan, offered this warning: “Similar to nuclear or chemical weapons there is no going back once we get a thing in our hands.”

Marc Lipsitch argued that gain-of-function experiments can mislead, “resulting in worse not better decisions,” and that the entire gain-of-function debate as overseen by the NIH was heavily weighted in favour of scientific insiders and “distinctly unwelcoming of public participation.”

A reporter asked Marc Lipsitch what he thought of the resumption of NIH funding. Gain-of-function experiments “have done almost nothing to improve our preparedness for pandemics,” he said, “yet they risked creating an accidental pandemic.”

But in the end, Baric was allowed to proceed with his experiments, and the research papers that resulted, showered with money, became a sort of Anarchist’s Cookbook for the rest of the scientific world. 

77 Nobel Laureates Denounce Trump Officials For Pulling Coronavirus Research Grant

In April 2020, 4 months into the coronavirus emergency, a deputy director at the NIH wrote an email to EcoHealth Alliance. “You are instructed to cease providing any funds to Wuhan Institute of Virology,” it said.  In response, Daszak and the chief scientific officer of New England Biolabs (a company that sells seamless gene-splicing products to laboratories, among other things) got 77 Nobel Prize winners to sign a statement saying that the cancellation deprived the “nation and the world of highly regarded science that could help control one of the greatest health crises in modern history and those that may arise in the future.” 

Later, as a condition of further funding, the NIH wrote to say it wanted Daszak to arrange an outside inspection of the Wuhan lab and to procure from Wuhan’s scientists a sample of whatever they’d used to sequence the SARS-2 virus.  Daszak was outraged (“I am not trained as a private detective”), and again he fought back.  He was reluctant to give up his own secrets, too. “Conspiracy-theory outlets and politically motivated organisations have made Freedom of Information Act requests on our grants and all of our letters and emails to the NIH,” he told Nature. “We don’t think it’s fair that we should have to reveal everything we do.”

But Daszak has survived — even prospered.  The Lancet made him the lead investigator in its inquiry into the origins of the pandemic, and the WHO named him to its 10-person origins investigation. 

The WHO’s information gathering has been hindered by Chinese secretiveness, when an initial investigative team sent to Beijing was told its members’ access to scientists would be restricted and that it couldn’t visit the seafood market, then considered a hub of the pandemic.

When a BBC video team tried to inspect the Yunnan mine shaft, they found the road to the mine blocked by a strategically parked truck that had “broken down” shortly before they arrived. Reporter John Sudworth asked Daszak, one of the 10 members of the second WHO investigative team, whether he would push for access to the Wuhan Institute of Virology. “That’s not my job to do that,” Daszak replied

David Relman, the Stanford microbiologist, one of the most thoughtful of the voices warning against gain-of-function research, published a paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on the urgent need to unravel the origins of COVID-19. “If SARS-CoV-2 escaped from a lab to cause the pandemic,” he wrote, “it will become critical to understand the chain of events and prevent this from happening again.” 

Conflicts of interest by researchers and administrators will need to be addressed, Relman wrote; to reach the truth, the investigation must be transparent, international, and, as much as possible, unpolitical. “A more complete understanding of the origins of COVID-19 clearly serves the interests of every person in every country on this planet.”

For more than 15 years, coronavirologists strove to prove that the threat of SARS was ever present and must be defended against, and they proved it by showing how they could doctor the viruses they stored in order to force them to jump species and go directly from bats to humans. 

More and more bat viruses came in from the field teams, and they were sequenced and synthesized and “rewired,” to use a term that Baric likes.  In this international potluck supper of genetic cookery, hundreds of new variant diseases were invented and stored. And then one day, perhaps, somebody messed up. It’s at least a reasonable, “parsimonious” explanation of what might have happened.

This may be the great scientific meta-experiment of the 21st century. Could a world full of scientists do all kinds of reckless recombinant things with viral diseases for many years and successfully avoid a serious outbreak? The hypothesis was that, yes, it was doable. The risk was worth taking. There would be no pandemic.


So you see the decades of Frankenscience was a risk worth taking “because there would be no pandemic”.

In 2002 the coronavirus was seen as an exploitable mechanism that can be used for both good or ill.  

All I can say is there is a thin line between genius and madness – god help us all.

Sky broadcast…

This content was sourced from Unity News Network.


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