Chinese study that claimed Covid originated in India withdrawn

NEW DELHI: A study claiming that the Indian subcontinent may be where the first human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus occurred has been withdrawn from the medical journal’s preprint platform The Lancet, Global reported recently. Times.
Global Times said the study was first published on SSRN.com, the prepress platform of the medical journal The Lancet, on November 17, but the article was withdrawn.
A staff from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) Neuroscience Institute also confirmed to the Global Times that the study was withdrawn from the platform.
The study was led by researchers from CAS’s Institute of Neuroscience, Fudan University in Shanghai and the University of Texas in Houston.
The pre-press study, titled “Early Cryptic Transmission and Evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in Human Hosts”, suggested that the Indian subcontinent may be where the first human-to-human transmission of the novel coronavirus occurred. three to four months before the outbreak in Wuhan.
Global Times said withdrawing a study from SSRN.Com is no surprise. “If researchers or the research institute find that their studies may lack data, or are not robust or deliberate enough to draw a conclusion, they would consider withdrawing their study, an expert told the Global Times. of public health based in Beijing on condition of anonymity, “the report said in Global Times.
He said that “the withdrawal of this virus origin study shows that tracing the origin of the virus around the world is a complicated scientific matter, which is not an easy task, and is far from reaching a conclusion without international collaboration. “.
As the document was still a pre-printed version that has yet to go through the peer-review process, the recall could mean that the study’s findings may require further verification, experts said.
“Further evidence suggests the virus’s early existence in the world before humans were aware of it, and points to multiple sources,” he added.
Global Times said a study by the National Cancer Institute of Milan found the novel coronavirus in blood samples collected in October 2019 and research conducted by the University of Barcelona showed the presence of the virus in wastewater samples in Barcelona in the March 2019.
On Monday, the Wall Street Journal also cited a government study that Covid-19 was likely in the United States in mid-December, about a month before the country reported its first case and weeks before China reported its first. case.
Francois balloux, director of the UCL Genetics Institute and professor of computational systems biology at University College London, described the Chinese researchers’ article as “nonsense.” “A nonsense piece of nonsense claiming # SARSCoV2 originated in India, presented in Lancet. I can only hope that the peer review process will promptly eliminate it.”

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