Straight out of COVID-19 come this Lab Procedure. Would you believe – it’s to make pathogens worse – just to see how bad they can get. Well, that seems the bottom line as I read about this GOF so far. Supposedly, this will “facilitate vaccine development.” GOF is involved with PPP – Potential Pandemic Pathogens ……. and their transmissibility. Here’s the justification:
“Gain of Functjon experiments allow us to understand how pandemic viruses evolve, so that we can make predictions, develop countermeasures, and do disease surveillance.”
Sometime back in 2011, it seems, (anyone can Goggle this GOF) there was concern that this procedure could get out of hand. Well, there is this history of bioweaponization having been so developed and around for some time. So, the GOF funding to the NIH (National Institute of Health) was stopped in that year. But then, in 11/19/17 it was reconsidered for “constant review” and by 1/2/18 the ban on GOF procedures ended — ideally, to learn about dangerous strains without “making them transmissible.”
There were those who said that “enhancing potential pandemic pathogens in this manner is simply not worth the risk.” – “If an outbreak spreads to the community the consequences could be horrendous.” Indeed, there must be “appropriate containment of the highest level for GOF research.” Allow Gain of Function research to get pathogens activated to their potential………but don’t let them get loose. Well, welcome to 2020 and COVID-19. No one knows or is saying directly how it got loose. Was an animal infected? Was a human infected? Did an infected animal infect a human who then infected humans? From the wild or from the lab? Well, it’s hard to blame bats – China or USA – for Gain of Function procedures.
This is Gain of Function 101. There is so much more to learn about the procedures that activate these pathogens so and the containment of them —- which seems to have failed somewhere. Much learning is to come about the scientific rationale behind decisions for lab procedures and the possible breaches of containment.
Somehow there’s got to be — the sooner the better — a tremendous Gain of Function in human intelligence to handle this pathogen pandemic: making our smarts as loose and good as they can get under the circumstances of GOF —- with PPP’s making pathogens as bad as they can get and we having to don our PPE’s for protection while all the labs in the world are searching for the vaccine that works. As I read Science Direct and Lancet for these data and quotes, I’m rather convinced that some Lab (which Lab?/) failure caused this GOF to breach containment and has loosed this fully potentialed pathogen into some manner of transmission into the human world. — Alas, this is only Gain of Function 101.