China continues experiments with 'lethal' COVID strain; experts raise alarm: ‘This madness must be...’ | Mint
Active Stocks
Thu Feb 22 2024 15:26:47
  1. Bharti Airtel share price
  2. 1,136.10 -0.32%
  1. Tata Steel share price
  2. 145.90 1.43%
  1. State Bank Of India share price
  2. 767.00 -0.59%
  1. HDFC Bank share price
  2. 1,420.80 -1.21%
  1. Power Grid Corporation Of India share price
  2. 283.00 1.02%
Business News/ Science / News/  China continues experiments with 'lethal' COVID strain; experts raise alarm: ‘This madness must be...’
BackBack

China continues experiments with 'lethal' COVID strain; experts raise alarm: ‘This madness must be...’

A new study in China raises questions about risky experiments with viruses as scientists conducted experiments on a novel coronavirus strain resulting in a 100% fatality rate in genetically-modified mice.

FILE PHOTO: A scientist works in the lab of Linqi Zhang on research into novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) antibodies for possible use in a drug at Tsinghua University's Research Center for Public Health in Beijing, China, March 30, 2020. Picture taken March 30, 2020. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo (REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo)Premium
FILE PHOTO: A scientist works in the lab of Linqi Zhang on research into novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) antibodies for possible use in a drug at Tsinghua University's Research Center for Public Health in Beijing, China, March 30, 2020. Picture taken March 30, 2020. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo (REUTERS/Thomas Peter/File Photo)

Scientists in China have recently conducted experiments on a novel coronavirus strain, GX_P2V. It resulted in a 100% fatality rate in genetically-modified mice. This strain is a mutation of GX/2017, a virus initially identified in Malaysian pangolins in 2017.

The study, originating from Beijing, notes the swift and lethal impact of GX_P2V on mice with human-like genetic structures. The virus, targetting multiple organs including the brain, led to rapid deterioration in the mice's condition, culminating in death within eight days.

Also Read: COVID-19 vaccination did not increase the risk of unexplained sudden death among young adults in India: ICMR study

The mice got very sick quickly. They lost a lot of weight, couldn't move well, and their eyes turned white before they died. This study is different because all the mice died, which is more than what happened in other studies about similar viruses.

“SARS-CoV-2-related pangolin coronavirus GX_P2V(short_3UTR) can cause 100% mortality in human ACE2-transgenic mice, potentially attributable to late-stage brain infection. This underscores a spillover risk of GX_P2V into humans and provides a unique model for understanding the pathogenic mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2-related viruses," wrote the authors.

Also Read: Covid-19 cases rise in India: Existing vaccines protect against new JN.1 sub-variant? What expert says

But, it's not clear what this means for people. The study does not directly correlate these results with potential effects on humans.

Experts slam the study

Some experts, like Francois Balloux from the University College London, think this study is not useful and could be dangerous.

Also Read: Karnataka BJP MLA vows to expose Covid corruption charges against Yediyurappa

“It's a terrible study, scientifically totally pointless. I can see nothing of vague interest that could be learned from force-infecting a weird breed of humanised mice with a random virus. Conversely, I could see how such stuff might go wrong," he posted on X (formerly Twitter).

“This madness must be stopped before too late," posted Dr. Gennadi Glinsky, a retired professor.

This study is separate from the research in Wuhan, which was linked to different ideas about where COVID-19 came from. The origin of COVID-19 is still not known. The new study in China raises questions about doing risky experiments with viruses.

Unlock a world of Benefits! From insightful newsletters to real-time stock tracking, breaking news and a personalized newsfeed – it's all here, just a click away! Login Now!

Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Check all the latest action on Budget 2024 here. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Published: 17 Jan 2024, 09:26 AM IST
Next Story footLogo
Recommended For You
Switch to the Mint app for fast and personalized news - Get App