On Wednesday, CNN reported that China is planning to examine hundreds of blood samples collected and stored in Wuhan in order to determine the origins of COVID-19.
Wuhan, in Hubei province in central China, is considered the epicentre of the pandemic, with the first coronavirus infections confirmed there in December 2019. Experts at the World Health Organization indicated in February that blood samples from city inhabitants could aid investigators in determining how the pandemic started.
According to CNN, Chinese officials have preserved up to 200,000 blood samples obtained in 2019 at the Wuhan Blood Center in case they are needed as evidence in any investigations relating to the donations. Some of the samples were taken in October and November of 2019, around the time that experts believe the virus first infected humans.
Before researchers can analyse the blood samples, they must wait two years and time is up this month.
Given that the pandemic’s roots remain unknown, the World Health Organisation said this month that it is resuming its inquiry into COVID-19’s beginnings in China. Some scientists and politicians, including some from the United States, have accused China of concealing the outbreak’s cause, saying COVID-19 slipped from a Wuhan lab.