Featured Image
 C-SPAN / screenshot

(LifeSiteNews) – New documents have been released detailing United States funding provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) into coronavirus research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV).

The Intercept obtained more than 900 pages of documents as part of a Freedom of Information Act litigation the publication is conducting against the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which oversees NIAID.

Evidence contained in the pages prompted Rutgers molecular biologist Richard Ebright to describe White House COVID-19 advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci’s prior denial of U.S. funding of gain-of-function research as “untruthful.”

Millions channelled to EcoHealth to study bat coronavirus

The pages detail a grant from the NIH to Peter Daszak’s now-controversial EcoHealth Alliance, which has long partnered with the WIV in conducting gain-of-function research, particularly in coronaviruses.

Gain-of-function research “improves the ability of a pathogen to cause disease” in order to “help define the fundamental nature of human-pathogen interactions, thereby enabling assessment of the pandemic potential of emerging infectious agents,” according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The grant, titled “Understanding the Risk of Bat Coronavirus Emergence,” totaled over $3 million and was awarded May 2014 until 2019.

Daszak’s own description of the purpose of the study states that he was to “investigate the ecology, evolutionary biology and transmission dynamics of bat coronaviruses at the human-wildlife interface.”

In addition to conducting “field studies in China to obtain high quality samples from bats, and identify, characterize and isolate known and novel coronaviruses,” EcoHealth announced they would analyse, along with the WIV, “patterns of coronavirus transmission among bats and other wildlife, and the risk of spillover to humans.”

Details in the funding document repeatedly refer to the risk involved in the research, noting that “[f]ieldwork involves the highest risk of exposure to SARS or other Co Vs, while working in caves with high bat density overhead and the potential for fecal dust to be inhaled. There is also some risk of exposure to pathogens or physical injury while handling bats, civets, rodents or other animals, their blood samples or their excreta.”

The NIH funded research noted EcoHealth’s partnership with Dr. Shi Zhengli, the WIV’s lead coronavirus researcher and so-called “Bat Lady.” One aspect of the joint research to be undertaken, involved studying “future coronavirus” specifically linked to bats, and to develop “models” of “bat CoV emergence risk and host range” as well as testing “CoV inter-species transmission.”

It has already been documented how Shi was shown to work with EcoHealth in 2015 to use spike protein from a “novel coronavirus” to infect mice with humanized lungs, to determine their susceptibility to the pathogen.

A second grant is detailed in the new documents, titled “Understanding Risk of Zoonotic Virus Emergence in Emergent Infectious Disease Hotpots of Southeast Asia,” and was awarded by the NIAID to EcoHealth in August 2020, and runs through 2025. The research, funded to the tune of over $6 million, will identify “spillover risk of high zoonotic potential viruses from wildlife,” as well as any “novel viruses from Southeast Asian wildlife.” Once identified, the researchers would assess the viral capacity to infect humans, and the means of transmission.

Documents ‘make it clear’ that Fauci’s statements about gain-of-function research ‘are untruthful’

After the new documents were released, Ebright, a prominent molecular biologist at Rutgers University, wrote on Twitter: “The materials show that the 2014 and 2019 NIH grants to EcoHealth with subcontracts to WIV funded gain-of-function research as defined in federal policies in effect in 2014-2017 and potential pandemic pathogen enhancement as defined in federal policies in effect in 2017-present.”

Ebright concluded by noting that the documents were clear proof that Fauci, long-time director of NIAID, had been lying in his statements denying the NIH’s support gain-of-function research by the WIV: “The documents make it clear that assertions by the NIH Director, Francis Collins, and the NIAID Director, Anthony Fauci, that the NIH did not support gain-of-function research or potential pandemic pathogen enhancement at WIV are untruthful.”

Commenting on the documents to The Intercept, Alina Chan, a molecular biologist at the Broad Institute, stated they showed that EcoHealth should have taken the lab-leak seriously: “In this proposal, they actually point out that they know how risky this work is. They keep talking about people potentially getting bitten — and they kept records of everyone who got bitten,” Chan said. “Does EcoHealth have those records? And if not, how can they possibly rule out a research-related accident?”

Further evidence linking Fauci to COVID origins

EcoHealth and Fauci have come under sharp scrutiny in the wake of COVID-19, due to the growing evidence of Fauci’s links to the potential origins of the virus.

Speculations were raised about the possibility of the virus hailing from a Wuhan laboratory in the early days of coronavirus reporting at LifeSiteNews, as can be seen here, here, and here. Indeed, the Wuhan lab, located at the initial epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, was named the “most likely” source of the virus by a U.S. intelligence report from April. At least one Chinese whistleblower backed up that assessment, as have British intelligence agents, according to Fox News’ Steve Hilton.

Fauci repeatedly downplayed such a possibility, as well as any U.S. link to the laboratory.

Eventually having to face political scrutiny in May, Fauci denied to Sen. Rand Paul that the NIH and NIAID were connected to “gain-of-function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”

However, the new documents released by The Intercept greatly add to the already significant amount of evidence disproving Fauci’s denial. Leaked personal emails have notably already revealed that Fauci was informed early about the possibility of COVID-19 having originated in a laboratory, yet consistently downplayed the so-called lab leak theory.

Professor Madhav Das Nalapat, the Director of Geopolitics and International Relations and UNESCO Peace Chair at Manipal University in India, claimed recently that anyone who attempted to disagree with his denial of the lab leak theory was silenced. “Any scientist who spoke up was strictly warned that ‘Look here, you are going to have your career destroyed’,” claimed Nalapat.

With the growing evidence seeming to disprove Fauci’s rejection of the COVID lab-leak theory as well as his denial of U.S. funding of gain-of-function research, attention has been drawn to his own role. Appointed as Director of NIAID in 1984, Fauci’s wife, Dr. Christine Grady, heads the Department of Bioethics at NIH, raising questions about potential conflicts of interest.

In its research and operation, Fauci’s NIAID is guided by the ethics of the NIH. This means essentially that Grady’s decisions on ethics are intimately linked to, and inform her husband’s decisions on vaccine research and development. The NIAID participated in the development of COVID-19 vaccines (namely the Moderna jab), and the trialing of the vaccines.


Fauci knew about possible COVID lab leak evidence, ‘gain of function’ concerns, emails reveal

Tucker Carlson: Fauci committed perjury, might be under criminal investigation already

Facebook CEO offered Dr. Fauci ‘very exciting’ proposal, vaccine ‘resources’

Gay activist to Fauci in 1988 amid AIDS crisis: ‘You are an incompetent idiot’