Researchers think they have identified the exact type of bat responsible for the spread of the coronavirus – raising hopes that future outbreaks can be controlled.
Experts from the University of Hong Kong claim that the Chinese horseshoe bat is the original host of the virus.
The study pours cold water on Chinese propaganda that US troops were the real source of the outbreak.
Researchers replicated the intestines of the bats in a laboratory before attempting to infect them with the virus.
Researcher Dr. Yuen Kwok-yung said, “The Chinese horseshoe bat may be the original host of this SARS-CoV-2.”
The coronavirus pandemic is said to come from animals in a Chinese wet market in Wuhan, which also sold bats and exotic species for human consumption.
Despite calls by the World Health Organization (WHO) to countries to ban wildlife sales and trafficking to prevent the emergence of zoonotic viruses such as SARS-CoV-2, one of Indonesia’s most notorious markets continues to trade firmly in wild bats , rats, snakes, monkeys and lizards.
The Tomohon Extreme Market sells animals reportedly taken from the wild on Sulawesi Island, the Australian report.
Indonesia’s coronavirus task force, Wiku Adisasmito, told a live streamed press conference on Wednesday that he wants to see an end to the trade.
It comes amid reports that the coronavirus has escaped from a research center in Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak.
Scientists from the Wuhan Institute of Virology worked on bat diseases.
British officials are now investigating the “possibility of a link,” Sky News said.
The US is also investigating the laboratory, foreign media report.
The country’s defense secretary, Mark Esper, told NBC last month, “This is something we’ve been watching closely for a while.”