Coronavirus: Thread

grarpamp grarpamp at
Sun May 30 01:05:58 PDT 2021

Is This The Man Behind The Global Coronavirus Pandemic?
Wednesday, Jan 29, 2020 - 09:01 AM

In light of growing speculation, most of it within less than official
circles, that the official theory for the spread of the Coronavirus
epidemic, namely because someone ate bat soup at a Wuhan seafood and
animal market...

... is a fabricated farce, and that the real reason behind the viral
spread is because a weaponized version of the coronavirus (one which
may have originally been obtained from Canada), was released by
Wuhan's Institute of Virology (accidentally or not), a top, level-4
biohazard lab which was studying "the world's most dangerous
pathogens", perhaps it would be a good idea for the same Wuhan
Institute of Virology to remove the following "help wanted" notice,
posted on November 18, 2019, according to which the institute is
seeking to hire one or two post-doc fellows, who will use "bats to
research the molecular mechanism that allows Ebola and SARS-associated
coronaviruses to lie dormant for a long time without causing

The right candidate will:

    Have obtained or is about to obtain a PhD in life
science/biomedical related fields;
    Have a reliable and rigorous work style, with strong independent
scientific research ability and teamwork spirit;
    Have strong English communication and writing skills, have
research papers published in the international mainstream academic
    Have a cell biology, immunology, genomics and other relevant
background experience is preferred;

The full job posting, which can still be found on the Wuhan Institute
of Virology website can be found here (and screengrabbed below as it
will be gone within a few hours).

And google translated:

Why is this notable? Because as it turns out, this is a job posting
for the lab of Dr. Peng Zhou (周鹏), Ph.D., a researcher at the Wuhan
Institute of Virology and Leader of the Bat Virus Infection and
Immunization Group. Some more on Zhou's background from the Institute
(google translated):

    He received his PhD in Wuhan Virus Research Institute in 2010 and
has worked on bat virus and immunology in Australia and Singapore. In
2009 , he took the lead in starting the research on the immune
mechanism of bat long-term carrying and transmitting virus in the
world. So far, he has published more than 30 SCI articles, including
the first and corresponding author's Nature , Cell Host Microbe and
PNAS . At present, research on bat virus and immunology is continuing,
and it has received support from the National "You Qing" Fund, the
pilot project of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the major
project of the Ministry of Science and Technology.

Below is a list of several recent papers published by Dr. Zhou

    Dampened STING-Dependent Interferon Activation in Bats
    Fatal swine acute diarrhoea syndrome caused by an HKU2-related
coronavirus of bat origin
    IFNAR2-dependent gene expression profile induced by IFN-α in
Pteropus alecto bat cells and impact of IFNAR2 knockout on virus
    Immunogenicity of the spike glycoprotein of Bat SARS-like coronavirus
    Bat severe acute respiratory syndrome-like coronavirus ORF3b
homologues display different interferon antagonist activities

Which brings us to the punchline: courtesy of the Wuhan institute of
virology, here is a press release from Dr. Zhou's lab titled "How bats
carry viruses without getting sick":

    Bats are known to harbor highly pathogenic viruses like Ebola,
Marburg, Hendra, Nipah, and SARS-CoV, and yet they do not show
clinical signs of disease. In a paper published in the journal Cell
Host & Microbe on February 22, scientists at the Wuhan Institute of
Virology in China find that in bats, an antiviral immune pathway
called the STING-interferon pathway is dampened, and bats can maintain
just enough defense against illness without triggering a heightened
immune reaction.

    "We believe there is a balance between bats and the pathogens they
carry," says senior author Peng Zhou. "This work demonstrated that in
order to maintain a balance with viruses, bats may have evolved to
dampen certain pathways."

    In humans and other mammals, an immune-based over-response to one
of these and other pathogenic viruses can trigger severe illness. For
example, in humans, an activated STING pathway is linked with severe
autoimmune diseases.

    "In human history, we have been chasing infectious diseases one
after another," says Zhou, "but bats appear to be a 'super-mammal' to
these deadly viruses." By identifying a weakened but not defunct STING
pathway, researchers have some new insight into how bats fine-tune
antiviral defenses to balance an effective, but not an overt, response
against viruses.

    The authors hypothesize that this defense strategy evolved as part
of three interconnected features of bat biology: they are flying
mammals, have a long lifespan, and host a large viral reservoir.

    "Adaptation to flight likely caused positive selection of multiple
bat innate immune and DNA damage repair genes," Zhou says. These
adaptations may have shaped certain antiviral pathways (STING,
interferon, and others) to make them good viral reservoir hosts and
achieve a tolerable balance."

And just in case, here is a google-translated press release from Jan
18, 2019 describing the achievements of Dr. Peng Zhou:

    Wuhan has the first person in the global bat immunity research: "I
rushed forward with a sword"

    Changjiang Daily Financial Media May 4 hearing last month as they
tied for first author made a "natural", in recent years, the Chinese
Academy of Sciences Wuhan virus after 80 young researchers Zhou Peng
has been in the "natural", "American Academy of Sciences ”And other
international authoritative magazines published 28 papers, becoming
academic stars. In an interview with reporters recently, he introduced
that young scientists do not rely on genius to hold, but rely on
"super confident".

    It is understood that Zhou Peng is the pioneer of global bat
immune system research. "Bats carry viruses but do not get sick. They
have not been researched by scientists before, and certainly have
specificity different from other species, but this is like you know
the beginning and Ending without knowing how the story happened. "
After more than 10 years of research, Zhou Peng discovered that an
antiviral immune channel called "interferon gene-stimulating
protein-interferon" in the bat's body was inhibited, so that the bat
could just resist the disease without triggering a strong immune
response. The results were published in Cells, Hosts and
Microorganisms, which aroused the attention of the academic community.

    Zhou Peng, a student of undergraduate bioengineering, experienced
SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) in his junior year, which
made him interested in the virus: "A small virus makes the world
mess." He was admitted to the Wuhan Institute of Virology of the
Chinese Academy of Sciences at the postgraduate level, and studied
under Shi Zhengli, a bat expert. Focusing on the virus carried by the
bat, then I was wondering if the bat's immune system is special. "

    After graduating from the PhD, he entered the Australian Animal
Health Laboratory and became the first person in the global bat
immunity research. "I went through 4 years of trial and error, groped
in the dark, and hit the South Wall numerous times. I still remember a
'darkest moment' 'In the local cold winter, I was holding the
frostbite knee, sitting at the beach, and asking myself why this was
the case.'

    He began to learn Australian jokes and inspired himself. In 2016,
during postdoctoral studies at Duke University-National University of
Singapore Medical School, he was concerned that a certain interferon
in bats is always maintained at a high level. This paper became the
cover article of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences,
"Bat Immunity "This door was opened, and more and more people in the
world are paying attention to this field." Our generation, when we
were in college, watched "The Forrest Gump" and "Redemption of
Shawshank" and taught us stupidity and perseverance. I I feel like I
am carrying a sword and rushing forward. "

    After returning to China in 2016, Zhou Peng returned to his alma
mater to become a little-known young researcher. "In the long run,
bats carry the virus without getting sick. It is hoped that humans can
learn how to fight the virus, but this is still far from
industrialization. Far, the road ahead is long, and we must remain
'super confident' and continue to move forward. "(Reporter Li Jia
correspondent Chen teased Li Li intern Luo Yameng)

And here is the man, the myth, the bat-god himself: Peng Zhou.
Peng Zhou

His bio (source):

    Peng Zhou, Ph.D., researcher, team leader of bat virus infection
and immunity. He successively obtained bachelor's and doctoral degrees
from Henan University (2004) and Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese
Academy of Sciences (2010). During his doctorate, he was sent to the
Australian Animal Health Laboratory for study. He then carried out
research work at Duke-Nus Medical College in Australia and Singapore.
He has long been engaged in the research of new virus epidemiology and
bat antiviral immunity, revealing that bats carry SARS, MERS, and
Ebola for a long time but do not have their own immune mechanisms.

    Currently he is hosting and undertaking 3 projects of the National
Natural Science Foundation of China, and the Chinese Academy of
Sciences Special project and a major national science and technology
project - a major project for the prevention and control of infectious
diseases. Currently published 28 SCI papers, including Nature, Cell
Host Microbe, PNAS and other articles SCI papers, including Nature,
Cell Host Microbe, PNAS and other articles published by the first or
corresponding author. It is at the forefront of the world in the field
of bat and virus research.

So to summarize:

    One of China's top virology and immunology experts was and still
works at China's top-rated biohazard lab, the Wuhan Institute of
Virology, which some have affectionately called the real Umbrella
    Since 2009, Peng has been the leading Chinese scientist
researching the immune mechanism of bats carrying and transmitting
lethal viruses in the world.
    His primary field of study is researching how and why bats can be
infected with some of the most nightmarish viruses in the world
including Ebola, SARS and Coronavirus, and not get sick.
    He was genetically engineering various immune pathways (such as
the STING pathway in bats) to make the bats more or less susceptible
to infection, in the process potentially creating a highly resistant
mutant superbug.
    As part of his studies, Peng also researched mutant Coronavirus
strains that overcame the natural immunity of some bats; these are
"superbug" Coronavirus strains, which are not resistant to any natural
immune pathway, and now appear to be out in the wild.
    As of mid-November, his lab was actively hiring inexperienced
post-docs to help conduct his research into super-Coronaviruses and
bat infections.

    Peng's work on virology and bat immunology has received support
from the National "You Qing" Fund, the pilot project of the Chinese
Academy of Sciences, and the major project of the Ministry of Science
and Technology.

* * *

Something tells us, if anyone wants to find out what really caused the
coronavirus pandemic that has infected thousands of people in China
and around the globe, they should probably pay Dr. Peng a visit.

Or at least start with an email: Dr Peng can be reached at
peng.zhou at, and his phone# is 87197311.

More information about the cypherpunks mailing list