Senator Rand Paul says gain of function research is when scientists juice 'up naturally occurring animal viruses to infect humans.' The idea behind it is to learn about how these viruses may mutate in nature and harm humans.
Some suspect this type of research was going on at the Wuhan Institute of Virology. This is exactly why some believe there is a possibility SARS-COV-2 was accidentally leaked from a lab in Wuhan, China.
Quite frankly no one knows what was going on in the Wuhan Institute of Virology. China didn't let the World Health Organization investigate the WIV lab for over a year after the outbreak started. The ongoing theory that has been peddled, though not proven, is COVID-19 is a naturally occurring bat virus that infected a human in a wet market in Wuhan.
Washington Post columnist Josh Rogin wrote a book about China during the Trump presidency called Chaos Under Heaven. In the book, Rogin reveals how China wouldn't let any real lab investigation take place, and how they cleaned up the wet market before any could investigate that either.
This is exactly why Senator Rand Paul is suspicious. The Kentucky Republican asked Dr. Anthony Fauci (and the public face of the pandemic in America) if the National Institutes of Health funded gain of function research in the Wuhan lab. Watch.
Dr. Fauci denied funding gain of function research in Wuhan, but not in a lab in North Carolina. Dr. Fauci also didn't deny that NIH money did go to the Wuhan lab.
Here's where things get more interesting.
Dr. Fauci's organization, The National Institutes of Health did fund some research at the Wuhan lab. That grant was canceled in April 2020, after the pandemic began.
Dr. Fauci was adamant in denying this funding went to gain of function research. However, Sen. Paul's questions are valid and bring up other questions.
It's possible China was doing gain of function research in an underground fashion. It's also possible COVID-19 accidentally leaked out of the lab as a result of this underground research. It is also possible the Wuhan Institute of Virology siphoned funding from the NIH grant for gain of function research even if Dr. Fauci didn't intend the money to be used for it.
Perhaps that's why he was so defensive. Fauci knows there's no way to track the money the NIH sent to China. China is one of the most secretive countries in the world.