How scientists know the SARS-CoV-2 came from bats and not a
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Polly Hayes, a lecturer in Parasitology and Medical Microbiology at the University of Westminster, explained the question in an article published on British website The Conversation, citing multiple studies.

• No signs of manipulation in the genetic material of SARS-CoV-2

Genetic sequence of SARS-CoV-2 showed no signs of manipulation in the genome data which implies that the virus had not been genetically engineered in a lab.

• SARS-CoV-2 evolved from a previous wild coronavirus

Genome of SARS-CoV-2 is similar to that of other bat coronaviruses, which suggests that SARS-CoV-2 evolved from a previous wild coronavirus.

•SARS-CoV-2 and a bat virus in Wuhan lab significantly different in evolutionary terms

Wuhan researchers have found that SARS-CoV-2 may come from another known bat virus (RaTG13), 96 percent genome similarity.

But Hayes clarified that in evolutionary terms, it means the two have been shown to share a common ancestor. Therefore, RaGT13 is not an ancestor of SARS-CoV-2.

• SARS-CoV-2 shared similar features with related coronaviruses

One of the key features that makes SARS-CoV-2 different from the other coronaviruses is a particular "spike" protein.

However, other related coronaviruses do have similar features, providing evidence that they have evolved naturally rather than being artificially added in a lab.

Bats were also the source of the viruses causing Ebola, rabies, Nipah and Hendra virus infections, Marburg virus disease, and strains of Influenza A virus.

Source:https://theconversation.com/heres-how-scientists-know-the-coronavirus-came-from-bats-and-wasnt-made-in-a-lab-141850
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