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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

WHO experts in China to investigate origin of SARS-CoV-2

A 10-strong mission from the World Health Organization (WHO) arrived in Wuhan, central China, on Thursday to initiate new investigations about the origins of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus.

The National Health Commission of China stated that WHO technicians traveled from Singapore and will be quarantined for 14 days, according to the country’s procedures for international travelers.

Later, they will join to local scientists in these investigations, which are expected to last four weeks.

This is the third time that WHO experts visit China related to SARS-CoV-2. The mission is made up of scientists from various international organizations from the Netherlands, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Australia, Russia, Vietnam, Germany, the United States, Qatar and Japan.

One of its members, Dutch virologist Marion Koopmans, told CGTN channel that all hypotheses around coronavirus origins to reconstruct how it really arose, understand its evolution and thus avoid future pandemics will be deeply investigated.

As the virologist recalled, there are many ideas about this issue and most suggest bats, but checking if this was the case is of paramount importance. Starting investigations in Wuhan, the first city where the virus was reported, will help a lot.

Koopmans stressed that the mission now have in favor to learn more elements about SARS-CoV-2, how and whom it affects, including susceptible animals such as minks.

WHO team will deeply analyze China’s reports on the survival of the virus in frozen food packaging, as the UN agency so far recognizes aerosol and saliva droplets as the primary route of coronavirus infection, she said.

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