According to a research conducted in the United States, the first known infection of Covid-19 happened to a market vendor in the Chinese city of Wuhan, and not an accountant who appeared to have no connection to the market but whose case contributed to concerns that the virus may have leaked from a lab.
The origin of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 is still unknown, and it’s a major source of friction between China and the US.
This year, a collaborative investigation by China and the World Health Organization (WHO) effectively ruled out the premise that Covid-19 was created in a lab, stating that the most plausible scenario was that it infected people spontaneously, most likely through the wildlife trade.
In a joint study released in March, a WHO-led team of specialists spent four weeks in and around Wuhan, China’s capital city, with Chinese scientists, concluding that the SARS-CoV-2 virus was most likely transferred from bats to people through another animal, but that more research was needed.
According to Michael Worobey, head of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of Arizona, the accountant, who was widely thought to be the first person to be infected with COVID-19, his first symptoms appeared on Dec. 16, several days later than previously thought, according to a study published in the journal Science on Thursday.
His uncertainty stemmed from a tooth issue he experienced on December 8.
“His symptom onset came after multiple cases in workers at Huanan Market, making a female seafood vendor there the earliest known case, with illness onset 11 December,” the study said.
It claimed that the majority of early symptomatic cases were related to the market, notably to the western portion where raccoon dogs were confined, and that it gave solid proof of the pandemic’s beginning in a live-animal market.
Last month, the WHO suggested forming a new expert panel to look into the coronavirus’s origins.
(Adapted from Reuters.com)