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WHO just released its report on the coronavirus’ origins, and there’s one mystery left to solve

WHO says the virus likely went from bats to humans — but it’s unclear how that happened

The World Health Organization said the virus likely went from bats to humans — but it’s unclear how it got there.
Residents visit the Yangtze River in Wuhan in central China’s Hubei province on Monday, March 29, 2021.
Chinatopix via Associated Press

A new report from the World Health Organization and Chinese researchers has detailed the most likely origin story for the novel coronavirus, The Associated Press reports.

The most likely theory is that the virus jumped from bats to humans through another animal, though it remains unclear what that animal might be.

According to The Associated Press, bats are known to carry coronaviruses, which makes the link all the more likely.

  • However, according to The Daily Beast, the report said that “the evolutionary distance between these bat viruses and SARS-CoV-2 is estimated to be several decades, suggesting a missing link.”
  • Per the AP, pangolins, minks and cats can all carry the coronavirus, too, which means they could have been the link.

The researchers said it is “extremely unlikely” the coronavirus started in a lab, according to The Associated Press.

Reports of the WHO on COVID-19 origins leaked already

Last week, I wrote for the Deseret News about the forthcoming report from the World Health Organizations by a team of international and Chinese researchers, which was reportedly going to reveal the four working theories of the coronavirus’ origins.

Per The Associated Press, the report was allegedly going to detail that the virus came from an infected bat or another animal that later infected humans.

Team member Vladimir Dedkov told The Associated Press that there were “no facts suggesting that there was a leak” from any lab.

  • “If suddenly scientific facts appear from somewhere, then accordingly, the priority of the version will change. But, at this particular moment, no.”