Furin cleavage site may not have been deliberately engineered.
I have a friend who is a researcher at the Australian National Animal Health Laboratory in Geelong. I shared Chris’ video “Coronavirus: Are Our Scientists Lying To Us?” with him.
This was his response:
I think Chris is making a huge unsubstantiated allegation that a furin cleavage site has been deliberately engineered into the virus.
His argument is that given none of the closely related viruses has this polybasic cleavage site then this must have been deliberately engineered. However this argument fails to consider that this virus may have been circulating for years in it’s monobasic cleavage site form and then only recently acquired the polybasic cleavage site.
I did my PhD on avian influenza and avian flu does a similar thing. There is a cleavage site on one of the flu proteins. low pathogenic forms of the virus circulate in wild birds and encode a monobasic cleavage site, sometimes when the virus spills over into chickens or turkeys the cleavage site rapidly mutates and becomes polybasic and (i.e inserts several extra basic animo acids like arginine and lysine) and effectively turns into a highly pathogenic virus.
There are several outbreaks detected on chicken farms where a high path bird flu is found in the chickens (containing the polybasic furin-cleavable cleavage site) and nearby in another farm without disease or some close by wild birds/ducks etc the low pathogenic virus is also found (containing the monobasic ie.e non furin cleavable site).
I’ve also seen a study by a Japanese group where they passaged a flu virus in chickens and monitored the virus sequence as it became highly pathogenic (it did so by serially acquiring additional basic amino acids at the cleavage site and it did it within a couple of rounds of infection in chickens (and yes that is basically gain of function research but it allows us to understand how important it is that we keep bird flu out of chicken farms so as to not allow the virus to evolve into highly pathogenic forms).
Anyway I realise i may be using too much technical jargon and happy to try to chat to you more about this if you want, but point is I dont feel that there is any evidence that scientists deliberately mutated this virus. The only way to tell would be to investigate scientists work directly. I definitely dont think this is true. gain of function work has its place in ensuring drugs will work and that viruses wont readily mutate to become drug resistant etc so there are legitimate times to do it (particularly in the case of assessing antivirals). Happy to chat more.
What respose can I give him?
You might send him this.
There is another post where he says he can prove it came from a lab but I can’t find it.
He was posting under wodz and is now identifying himself as Dr. Jurgen Mayer a German scientist. If you go to the above post you can pass it on to your friend.
That is true that furin sites have been found in nature. Also in 2 species of pangolins.
It is also true that labs in the US, Japan, and most recently China have published placing furin cleavage sites in viruses. Using CRISPR there is no residue or sign of insertion.
see: he also gives references- I while back I did a PubMed search and found more papers that he did not site. They were American.
It’s not just that the furin cleavage site has a 4 amino acid sequence necessary for furin to cleave, it’s also the serine protease TMPRSS2 that has to prime the S protein; without either it seems it wouldn’t be able to fuse with the cell membrane and deliver the RNA payload. And there are about no less than FIVE other infection targets other than ACE2. AND it seems to somehow be able to cause cells to sprout tentacles that allow it to more effectively infect neighboring cells, a rare phenomena seen only I think in ebola and smallpox.
Luc Montagier thinks it was engineered- Nobel Laureate for HIV