The director of the National Institutes of Health told Politico the novel coronavirus is not manmade, but there was "no way of knowing" if the virus escaped from a lab in Wuhan, China.
"Whether [the coronavirus] could have been in some way isolated and studied in this laboratory in Wuhan, we have no way of knowing," Dr. Francis Collins told the news outlet Wednesday.
He added, but "nature created this virus, and has proven once again to be the most effective bioterrorist."
His comments come as China ruled out a live animal market and lab in the city of Wuhan as the coronavirus origin.
"It now turns out that the market is one of the victims," Gao Fu, director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said Thursday in comments carried on Chinese state media.
The Huanan seafood market had drawn scrutiny over suspicions it was the origin of the coronavirus.
"At first, we assumed the seafood market might have the virus, but now the market is more like a victim," Gao said. "The novel coronavirus had existed long before."
His team went to Wuhan to collect samples for COVID-19 researchers in early January. Some U.S. politicians have continued to call the virus the "Wuhan virus" and "China virus," including President Donald Trump.
Solange Reyner ✉
Solange Reyner is a writer and editor for Newsmax. She has more than 15 years in the journalism industry reporting and covering news, sports and politics.
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