There may be some culpability involved, but the huge resistance being mounted by the international scientific elite, the media and vested financial interests against conducting an objective analysis of the origin of the COVID-19 virus is primarily about money.
If it would be determined that the COVID-19 pandemic resulted from a laboratory leak of a genetically engineered virus, it would not only disrupt the flow of huge sums of research funding, but adversely affect the investments of those vehemently opposed to President Donald Trump’s efforts to make the U.S. economy less dependent on China and, therefore, make the U.S. less vulnerable to Chinese geopolitical blackmail.
Live-attenuated vaccines are a type of vaccine used for smallpox and childhood diseases like measles, mumps, rubella and chickenpox, in which a weakened or “attenuated” form of the virus that causes the disease is manufactured.
Because such vaccines are so similar to the natural infection that they help prevent, they create a strong and long-lasting, even lifetime immune response.
Live-attenuated virus vaccines must possess certain characteristics to be safe and effective.
They must have lower virulence and replication capability than the natural pathogenic form of the virus, but be able to induce a pronounced immune response.
Of additional importance is that the live-attenuated virus vaccines should clear quickly from the body and not revert or mutate back to the natural pathogenic form.
To fulfill those characteristics, certain modifications providing protection strategies, or “circuit breakers,” must be engineered into the viral genome, which are also potential markers of artificial manipulation.
An ad hoc group of scientific investigators known as DRASTIC have compiled a 36-point list to buttress their claim that the COVID-19 virus could have originated in a vaccine development program.
For example, a central mechanism for controlling immune responses is mediated by interferons. The COVID-19 virus seems to have some signatures in its genome which indicate interferon hypersensitivity compared to the coronavirus responsible for the 2002-2003 pandemic.
Another indication that the COVID-19 virus may have been the product of an attempt to produce a live-attenuated virus vaccine is the accumulation of “synonymous mutations” in the spike protein compared to RaTG13, which the global scientific elite claim is the nearest bat coronavirus relative.
The artificial accumulation of synonymous mutations has been described as one method of producing live-attenuated virus vaccines by “deoptimizing” the genetic code and inhibiting replication.
The most striking indication of genetic manipulation of the COVID-19 virus is the presence of the furin polybasic cleavage site, which does not exist in any closely-related bat coronavirus yet identified.
Given its role in the virus-cell or cell-cell membrane fusion process, the DRASTIC team suggests that the insertion of the furin polybasic cleavage site may have been related to a high-risk attempt to produce an intranasal “self-spreading” vaccine spray.
“Self-spreading vaccines are essentially genetically engineered viruses designed to move through populations in the same way as infectious diseases, but rather than causing disease, they confer protection.”
Obviously, much could go wrong using such an approach.
To avoid the scientific equivalent of the Russia collusion hoax, the Trump Administration should not rely on the international scientific elite, the media and vested financial interests to shape the debate, but should appoint an independent and objective task force to determine the true origin of the COVID-19 virus.
Given the power of genetic engineering and the enormous danger when it is recklessly applied, the stakes are just too high not to address this issue honestly and directly.
Lawrence Sellin, Ph.D. is retired from an international career in business and medical research with 29 years of service in the US Army Reserve and a veteran of Afghanistan and Iraq. He is a member of the Citizens Commission on National Security. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The views expressed in CCNS member articles are not necessarily the views or positions of the entire CCNS. They are the views of the authors, who are members of the CCNS.