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“... "I think it's possible we could put it together but the trail has grown cold with so much time between the first major cases and now,"*Dr. Gregory Gray, a Duke University professor, told Newsweek. "I'm not optimistic that it's going to be clear cut at least. ... Complicating the investigation is the potential for the WHO-led mission to have to rely on data given to them by Chinese scientists. Gray, who has done work and overseas a lab in China, noted political influences are governing the information that's being shared and said the country's lack of transparency over the past year gives no indication they'll be transparent now, making it difficult to satisfy scientists around the world that a "thorough examination of the evidence has taken place." ... the most common consensus among scientists is that the new coronavirus is naturally occurring and determining the potential source of infection could help manage emerging disease threats, according to WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. ... To that end, Gray advocated for conducting surveillance of people who are exposed to large numbers of animals, such as those that work on big farms for meat production, a proactive measure that falls under the One Health approach. This could give officials an "early warning" about a virus and potentially the ability to stop an epidemic before it happens because "it's too late once it walks into an emergency room with 100 people." ... The investigation will likely have a tough time putting together an origin besides a "hypothesis" at best, according to Gray, because they'll be "highly reliant" on what Chinese scientists share with them. While he doesn't know where the pandemic began, he doesn't think the road will lead to the lab. ... "It just doesn't ring true to me," Gray said. "There's no sign there was manipulation of the genome to cause this particular virus to rapidly change and become highly infectious and highly transmissible between people. Perhaps it originated in a bat, went through a secondary animal—maybe a domesticated animal—amplified and changed through a normal evolutionary process."

*Greg Gray, MD, MPH, FIDSA (a member One Health Initiative team Advisory Board) – Professor, Duke University School of Medicine, Duke Infectious Diseases & Duke Global Health Institute, Durham, North Carolina (USA) and Program in Emerging Infectious Diseases Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore. Formerly, Director, One Health Center of Excellence for Research & Training, Professor Department of Environmental and Global Health, College of Public Health and Health Professions, and Infectious Diseases and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida (USA).