Fauci Resisted Trump Directive to Cancel Virus Research Grant Linked to Wuhan Lab, New Book Says

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ top infections disease expert, resisted a directive from President Trump to cancel a research grant for a non-profit that was linked to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, according to a new book detailing the Trump administration’s handling of COVID-19 pandemic.

Trump issued a directive to Fauci and the National Institutes of Health in April 2020 to cut funding for a study examining how coronaviruses jump from infected bats to humans after it was reportedly linked to the lab in Wuhan, suspected of having leaked the virus.

The exchange between Fauci and the White House is detailed in an upcoming book by Washington Post reporters Yasmeen Abutaleb and Damian Paletta called “Nightmare Scenario: Inside the Trump Administration’s Response to the Pandemic That Changed History,” according to Fox News.

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US Grant to Wuhan Lab to Enhance Bat-Based Coronaviruses Was Never Scrutinized by HHS Review Board, NIH Says

An oversight board created to scrutinize research that would enhance highly dangerous pathogens did not review a National Institutes of Health grant that funded a lab in Wuhan, China, to genetically modify bat-based coronaviruses.

Experts say the NIH grant describes scientists conducting gain-of-function research, a risky area of study that, in this case, made SARS-like viruses even more contagious. Federal funding for gain-of-function research was temporarily suspended in 2014 due to widespread scientific concerns it risked leaking supercharged viruses into the human population.

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