Light Wave


US blacklists China’s leaky, secretive Wuhan lab over pandemic

By Jake Beardslee · September 21, 2023

In brief…

  • HHS has barred the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China from receiving U.S. funding for 10 years.
  • WIV conducted risky research on bat coronaviruses and is suspected of being the origin of the global pandemic.
  • WIV has refused to cooperate with NIH requests for information on its research.
  • U.S. lawmakers are calling for suspending all gain-of-function research funding.
The U.S. has cut off funding to China's Wuhan Institute of Virology (above) for 10 years over concerns related to the global pandemic.  Ureem2805/Wikimedia

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has officially barred the controversial Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in China from receiving American funding for the next decade.

The lab has been under scrutiny for possibly being the source of the receent global pandemic.

In a letter to WIV Director General Dr. Yanyi Wang, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra stated that WIV will be denied U.S. research grants until July 16, 2033. WIV has provided no response to the letter.

“WIV has not acknowledged the violations, has not cooperated with the Government to address the violations, has not accepted responsibility for the violations,” Becerra’s letter said.

Previously, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that WIV “conducted an experiment [researching bat coronaviruses] yielding a level of viral activity which was greater than permitted under the terms of the grant.”

WIV also ignored NIH requests for information on their research made in November 2021 and January 2022.

“This is especially timely as mounting evidence and intelligence continue to suggest that the … pandemic originated from a laboratory failure in Wuhan,” said Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio), Chairman of the House Select Subcommittee on the Pandemic. “Rewarding the likely source of a global pandemic with American resources will only lead to more future health risks.”

The Wuhan lab received more than $600,000 in NIH grants between 2014 and 2019. In total, WIV obtained more than $1.4 million in U.S. federal funding through New York-based EcoHealth Alliance, an NIH agent.

“Stripping the WIV of all future federal funding is a step in the right direction, but what happened at that lab is just the tip of the iceberg,” said Sen. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.).

Marshall called for “an immediate suspension of all gain-of-function research and funding for these CCP military-led projects.”

The FBI was the first U.S. agency to say that a lab leak was the most plausible origin for the global pandemic.