Did Japan just release evidence that all COVID variants were engineered in biolabs?!
Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!
Claim : Japan Proved All COVID Variants Were Engineered!
People are sharing an article by The People’s Voice (formerly NewsPunch), which claims that Japan just released evidence that all COVID variants were engineered in biolabs!
Here is an excerpt from the article, which is pretty long, so feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!
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Truth : Japan Did Not Prove COVID Variants Were Engineered!
This is yet another example of FAKE NEWS about COVID-19 and the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and here are the reasons why…
Fact #1 : Study Does Not Appear To Be Official / Peer-Reviewed
First, let me just direct you to the study – Unnatural evolutionary processes of SARS-CoV-2 variants and possibility of deliberate natural selection, which you can read for yourself here.
This is not an official study conducted by the Japanese government, or its agencies. Neither does this study appear to be published or peer-reviewed by any journal.
This study appears to be only “published” in Zenodo on August 15, 2023. Zenodo is not a journal though, but a general-purpose open repository for research papers, data sets, and other research-related digital files.
While this does not mean that the study is rubbish, it is important for the study to be at least pass the peer-review process, which is itself merely the first step in any scientific research review process.
Fact #2 : Study Only Looked At Omicron Variants
While The People’s Voice article claimed that the study “concluded that all Covid variants were engineered in biolabs“, that is simply not the case. For one thing – the study only looked at Omicron variants.
The study authors certainly never concluded that “all Covid variants were engineered in biolabs“.
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Fact #3 : Study Never Said COVID-19 Was Artificially Created
While The People’s Voice article claimed that the study “concluded that all Covid variants were engineered in biolabs“, that is also not the case.
The authors pointed out in their study (PDF download) that they “do not conclude” that the SARS-CoV-2 virus was “artificially synthesized”.
In addition, the authors went to some length to point out that it is impossible to know if the original SARS-CoV-2 virus was natural or artificial.
Fact #4 : Study Never Said COVID-19 Was Intentionally Released
The People’s Voice article also claimed that the study “concluded that all Covid variants” were “intentionally released into the public“. Again, that is not the case.
The authors pointed out in their study (PDF download) that they “do not conclude” that the SARS-CoV-2 virus was “distributed based on malicious intent”.
Fact #5 : Study Hypothesises Gain-of-Function Creation Of Omicron
The study authors are hypothesising that the Omicron variants may have been artificially synthesised, based on their finding that “most of the mutations” in the S protein of the Omicron variants “are non-synonymous“, which they claim is “highly unnatural“.
The authors suggested that the mutations may have been “artificially generated to identify amino acids of the S protein involved in the infectivity and virulence” of the coronavirus.
While the authors did not explicitly say so, they are suggesting that the Omicron variant may have been introduced as an accidental lab leak of gain-of-function research into SARS-CoV-2.
Fact #6 : Study Called For Further Research
Rather that coming to the conclusion that “all Covid variants were engineered in biolabs and intentionally released into the public” as claimed by The People’s Voice article, the authors pointed out that their study had some weaknesses:
- their databases had “a limited number of viral sequences”, and
- their data may be unreliable due to “technical problems in sequencing or some malicious intent”
As such, their paper aims to “point out” that the SARS-CoV-2 virus has undergone “unthinkable mutations under conventional coronavirus mutation mechanisms“, and the authors “hope” that the “possibility of artificial theory” be “included in the discussion“.
In other words – the study authors suggest that more research should be conducted to look at the possibility that these COVID-19 variants were artificially created as part of reverse genetics / Gain-of-Function (GoF) research.
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