Experts, including a Chinese scientist, have been named by the WHO to assist in the search for COVID’s origins.
On Wednesday, the World Health Organization unveiled the members of a new advisory panel that will help design — and possibly even join — the next phase of its research into COVID-19’s origins.
The WHO has suggested 26 experts for its Scientific Advisory Group for Novel Pathogen Origins, or SAGO. Dr. Inger Damon of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is part of the international team, as is Yang Yungui, deputy head of the Beijing Institute of Genomics at China’s National Natural Sciences Academy.
The counselors were chosen from over 700 candidates, according to a statement on the UN health body’s website. Before the organization meets for the first time amid the continuing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, there will be a two-week public comment period to confirm SAGO’s membership.
“New viruses with the potential to cause epidemics and pandemics develop all the time, and while SARS-CoV-2 is the most recent, it will not be the last,” said WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
“Understanding where novel infections come from is critical for preventing future epidemic and pandemic outbreaks, and it necessitates a wide spectrum of expertise,” he added.
This is a work in progress.