Unusual Features of the SARS-CoV-2 Genome Suggesting Sophisticated Laboratory Modification Rather Than Natural Evolution and Delineation of Its Probable Synthetic Route
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has led to over 910,000 deaths worldwide and unprecedented decimation of the global economy. Despite its tremendous impact, the origin of SARS-CoV-2 has remained mysterious and controversial. The natural origin theory, although widely accepted, lacks substantial support. The alternative theory that the virus may have come from a research laboratory is, however, strictly censored on peer-reviewed scientific journals. Nonetheless, SARS-CoV-2 shows biological characteristics that are inconsistent with a naturally occurring, zoonotic virus. In this report, we describe the genomic, structural, medical, and literature evidence, which, when considered together, strongly contradicts the natural origin theory.
The evidence shows that SARS-CoV-2 should be a laboratory product created by using bat coronaviruses ZC45 and/or ZXC21 as a template and/or backbone. Building upon the evidence, we further postulate a synthetic route for SARS-CoV-2, demonstrating that the laboratory-creation of this coronavirus is convenient and can be accomplished in approximately six months. Our work emphasizes the need for an independent investigation into the relevant research laboratories. It also argues for a critical look into certain recently published data, which, albeit problematic, was used to support and claim a natural origin of SARS-CoV-2. From a public health perspective, these actions are necessary as knowledge of the origin of SARS-CoV-2 and of how the virus entered the human population are of pivotal importance in the fundamental control of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as in preventing similar, future pandemics.
Publication Note (July 17th, 2021):
The three Yan reports used scientific evidence and analyses to prove that SARS-CoV-2 is an Unrestricted Bioweapon created by military scientists of the Chinese Community Party (CCP) regime. These reports have played a pivotal role in revealing the true identity of the ongoing Unrestricted Biowarfare. For this reason, the CCP and its allies have been constantly launching attacks at the Yan Reports. Very recently, the Rule of Law Foundation (ROLF) and Rule of Law Society (ROLS), which we have listed as our honorary affiliation in our reports, requested Zenodo to have the original uploads of our reports closed. This was done by the ROLF & ROLS without informing us authors or seeking our agreement. This is unacceptable because the work was done by us authors independently with no financial assistance provided by the ROLF & ROLS or any other organization.
Their action here has no scientific 2 basis and is against the rules of scientific publications. To restore the availability of our reports to the world, we have therefore re-uploaded the three Yan reports. Our affiliation has been changed to Yan Research – An Independent Research Team. The current report was originally published on September 14th, 2020. As of July 16th, 2021, the original Zenodo upload of it has been viewed 1,339,786 times and downloaded 797,325 times. Upon mutual agreement, Dr. Jie Guan opted out of this publication and his contributions have instead been specified in the acknowledgements.
COVID-19 has caused a world-wide pandemic, the scale and severity of which are unprecedented. Despite the tremendous efforts taken by the global community, management and control of this pandemic remains difficult and challenging.
As a coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 differs significantly from other respiratory and/or zoonotic viruses: it attacks multiple organs; it is capable of undergoing a long period of asymptomatic infection; it is highly transmissible and significantly lethal in high-risk populations; it is well-adapted to humans since the very start of its emergence1; it is highly efficient in binding the human ACE2 receptor (hACE2), the affinity of which is greater than that associated with the ACE2 of any other potential host.
The origin of SARS-CoV-2 is still the subject of much debate. A widely cited Nature Medicine publication has claimed that SARS-CoV-2 most likely came from nature. However, the article and its central conclusion are now being challenged by scientists from all over the world. In addition, authors of this Nature Medicine article show signs of conflict of interests, raising further concerns on the credibility of this publication.
The existing scientific publications supporting a natural origin theory rely heavily on a single piece of evidence – a previously discovered bat coronavirus named RaTG13, which shares a 96% nucleotide sequence identity with SARS-CoV-2. However, the existence of RaTG13 in nature and the truthfulness of its reported sequence are being widely questioned.
It is noteworthy that scientific journals have clearly censored any dissenting opinions that suggest a non-natural origin of SARS-CoV-2. Because of this censorship, articles questioning either the natural origin of SARS-CoV-2 or the actual existence of RaTG13, although of high quality scientifically, can only exist as preprints or other non-peer-reviewed articles published on various online platforms.
Nonetheless, analyses of these reports have repeatedly pointed to severe problems and a probable fraud associated with the reporting of RaTG13. Therefore, the theory that fabricated scientific data has been published to mislead the world’s efforts in tracing the origin of SARS-CoV-2 has become substantially convincing and is interlocked with the notion that SARS-CoV-2 is of a non-natural origin.
Consistent with this notion, genomic, structural, and literature evidence also suggest a non-natural origin of SARS-CoV-2. In addition, abundant literature indicates that gain-of-function research has long advanced to the stage where viral genomes can be precisely engineered and manipulated to enable the creation of novel coronaviruses possessing unique properties. In this report, we present such evidence and the associated analyses.
Part 1 of the report describes the genomic and structural features of SARS-CoV-2, the presence of which could be consistent with the theory that the virus is a product of laboratory modification beyond what could be afforded by simple serial viral passage.
Part 2 of the report describes a highly probable pathway for the laboratory creation of SARS-CoV-2, key steps of which are supported by evidence present in the viral genome. Importantly, part 2 should be viewed as a demonstration of how SARS-CoV-2 could be conveniently created in a laboratory in a short period of time using available materials and well-documented techniques.
This report is produced by a team of experienced scientists using our combined expertise in virology, molecular biology, structural biology, computational biology, vaccine development, and medicine.