U.S. Congress says NIH ‘secretively’ funneled US tax dollars to the notorious Wuhan Lab for “reckless coronavirus experiments;” demands investigation
In the summer of last year, Chinese virologist and whistleblower Yan Li-Meng claimed coronavirus derived from the “Zhoushan bat virus.” Dr. Li-Men also blamed Dr. Fauci and WHO of coverup for China.
She alleged that White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci knows “more than me how they approved those gain-of-function research findings to (fund) these Chinese labs under the CCP’s control,” possibly in reference to a Newsweek report alleging Fauci’s organization funded gain-of-function research on bat coronavirus at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
According to public records, the Wuhan Institute of Virology has received $600,000 in U.S. taxpayer funds between 2014 and 2019 to study bat-based coronaviruses through EcoHealth Alliance and the Wuhan lab is still authorized to receive U.S. tax dollars for animal experiments until 2024.
Gain-of-function research is the euphemism for government-sponsored biological research conducted for biodefense purposes and aimed at increasing the virulence and lethality of pathogens and viruses. The deadly science-enhanced pathogens can and do escape into the community where they infect and kill people. NIH even said, “certain gain-of-function studies have raised biosafety and biosecurity concerns, including the potential dual-use risks associated with the misuse of the information or products resulting from such research.”
Fast forward six months later, U.S. lawmakers are now demanding an investigation of National Institutes of Health (NIH) ‘secretively’ funneling U.S. tax dollars to the notorious Wuhan Lab. The lawmakers said they “gravely concerned about the NIH’s relationship with both EcoHealth and Wuhan Institute of Virology”
In a letter sent Tuesday from the members of Congress to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General Christi Grimm, the 28 congressional signers are demanding a “prompt and thorough investigation” into the National Institutes of Health’s relationship with the Chinese Communist Party-run Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The 28 congressional signers, led by Reps. Scott Perry and Nancy Mace, write:
“Dear Principal Deputy Inspector General Grimm:
We write to request a prompt and thorough investigation into the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) response to biosafety concerns raised about taxpayer-funded coronavirus research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in Wuhan, China.”
“The NIH, unfortunately, has played a major role in supporting WIV and this treacherous research and the promotion of spurious claims dismissing the NIH-funded lab’s potential role in the COVID-19 pandemic,” the letter reads.
The lawmakers also added that NIH has been secretively funneled to WIV’s reckless coronavirus experiments through grants.
“In 2017, NIH Director Francis Collins personally supported and celebrated the resumption of dangerous taxpayer-funded “gain-of-function” research designed to make viruses more transmissible and fatal. Subsequently, Dr. Collins’ NIH allowed U.S. Taxpayer dollars to be secretively funneled to WIV’s reckless coronavirus experiments through grants awarded to the U.S.-based EcoHealth Alliance, Inc. The Pentagon also apparently funded WIV via a grant to EcoHealth.”
In their letter, the lawmakers also raised the safety of WIV’s NIH-funded coronavirus research by citing a March 2020 blog post writing NIH Director Francis Collins.
“In March 2020, as questions arose about the safety of WIV’s NIH-funded coronavirus research,Dr. Collins wrote a blog that is still published, which states, “Some folks are even making outrageous claims that the new coronavirus causing the pandemic was engineered in a lab.” He even tweeted a link to his article, writing, “New genomic study debunks claims that the novel #coronavirus causing #COVID19 was created in a lab.” Yet, experts now claim that WIV’s gain-of-function research could very well have engineered the novel coronavirus that caused the pandemic from a virus collected from bats in caves in China.”
The lawmakers also expressed their concerns about the relationship between NIH, EcoHealth and WIV saying:
In light of all this, we are gravely concerned about the NIH’s relationship with both
EcoHealth and WIV, and the Agency’s handling of allegations that the COVID-19 pandemic was potentially caused by an NIH-funded laboratory at WIV. We also are alarmed that WIV is eligible to receive additional funding from the NIH through 2024.
To conclude their letter, the members of Congress are requesting an investigation into the following questions concerning the NIH’s connections to the Wuhan Institute of Virology:
- When was the NIH first aware that coronavirus experiments were being conducted at WIV with taxpayer funds (via EcoHealth Alliance or otherwise)?
- Did NIH officials review WIV’s coronavirus experiments to assess compliance with Potential Pandemic Pathogen Care and Oversight (P3CO) guidelines?
- When was the NIH first aware of biosafety or other concerns at WIV?
- Was the NIH briefed on the concerns raised by the State Department in 2018 about the potential pandemic risk of WIV’s research?
- Did Dr. Collins or other NIH officials communicate with EcoHealth Alliance and/or WIV to coordinate responses to lab leak allegations?
- When does WIV’s current eligibility to receive NIH funding expire?
- Is WIV currently receiving any NIH support directly or indirectly?
- How much NIH funding — directly or indirectly — has WIV received from the NIH including grants, sub-grants, and other funding sources.