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Why Gain of Function Research Must Be Stopped

As renowned Indian research scientist Dr. Monali Rahalkar points out: “There is no doubt that gain-of-function research is unethical and there is no point in doing it. Why would any government want to give grants to researchers to make potentially pandemic viruses deadlier and transmissible more easily between people? I truly believe that such research should be stopped, even if it is carried out on the justification that it will help us in predicting future pandemics. What is the need, particularly in the case of horseshoe bats that are intrinsically nocturnal? They don't come into contact with humans night or day. Unless we disturb them, they are not going to trouble us. So why invite trouble by stepping into their territory, scoop out their faeces and bring so many samples to the lab? … Some experts suggest that what was happening at WIV cannot be classified under gain-of-function research, but I'm sure it comes very close to that. And who knows, those very bats which have been taken up for research might possess Sars-3 or Sars-4 coronaviruses and will lead to further pandemics in the future. Best to avoid this research completely. Rather than predicting pandemics, this kind of research has the potential to lead to more outbreaks of pandemics.” 

Learn More: Why 'Gain of Function' Research Must Be Stopped: Monali Rahulkar