NIH Director Collins: NIH Funding of Wuhan Lab ‘Not an Area’ That Will Answer Origins of Virus, My Departure Isn’t about That

On Tuesday’s broadcast of the Fox News Channel’s “Your World,” outgoing NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins said his departure has nothing to do with the controversy over the NIH funding research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and “our funding of that research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology was a million miles away in terms of the genome of the virus that we’re talking about,” so the funding issue is “not an area that is going to give us an answer to how SARS-CoV-2 got started.”

Host Neil Cavuto asked, [relevant remarks begin around 2:30] “Doctor, did the timing of this have anything to do with the heat and pressure that both you and Dr. Fauci have encountered over what you knew, when you knew it about the source of the coronavirus in this Wuhan lab and whether, deliberately or inadvertently, your funding helped provide that?”

Collins responded, “So, no, it didn’t, Neil. I’m glad you’re asking. Because, of course, people are always sort of looking for some kind of cause and effect here. I want to absolutely assure you and anybody else listening that it had nothing to do with my decision. And I also want to say that while this is an important issue, that we need to understand what happened, how did this virus get started in China, that our funding of that research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology was a million miles away in terms of the genome of the virus that we’re talking about, and to draw that connection is frankly absolutely not supportable by the data. And I do wish people would look more closely at that and recognize that that’s not an area that is going to give us an answer to how SARS-CoV-2 got started.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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