"We are taken for fools, when we have the elements". Since Tuesday, a video that has gone viral on social networks (3 million views on Facebook), claims to reveal the origin of the Coronavirus: the very prestigious Institut Pasteur.
In this 23-minute video, a man sums up in front of the camera, with a document highlighted in hand, how SARS-CoV-2 (virus responsible for the pandemic) was disseminated from the French hospital in Hanoi, Vietnam. According to this surfer - who claims to be a yellow vest and who has a certain audience on Facebook -, a patent filed by the Institut Pasteur in 2004, named "EP 1 694 829 B1", and accessible on the internet, would prove this theory. "We let this filth come in so that there are the most infected people, and thereafter the Pasteur Institute will release a vaccine." And who's going to buy it? Those who will have money, ”says the author of the video.
Misinterpretation of the patent
In reality, those who unearthed the document are mistaken about its interpretation. The patent, which was the subject of a declaration of invention in 2004, concerned a vaccine candidate developed by French researchers to treat the epidemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS in French and SARS in English), caused by the SARS-CoV virus, which caused 8,096 cases and 774 deaths in 28 countries between November 2002 and July 2003, according to the WHO.
⁉ FAKE NEWS: no, @ institutpasteur did not invent the virus responsible for # COVID19! Our explanations. ⁉
➡️ https://t.co/EPtKcdlsmZ pic.twitter.com/7yCpeE7aG2
The new coronavirus, called SARS-CoV-2 and responsible for Covid-19 is certainly from the same family but has little resemblance to SARS-Cov1. "The patent filed concerned SARS-cov1, which is very different from SARS-cov2", explains the Institut Pasteur in a press release published on their site. "The 2004 patent describes the discovery of the virus and then the invention of a vaccine strategy against this virus, not the invention of the virus itself," insists the organization on its site.
Moreover, only a few laboratories in the world would be able to artificially recreate a virus, according to Etienne Simon-Loriere, virology researcher at the Pasteur Institute: "In France, we do not have the capacity for reverse genetics, essential for artificially regenerate a virus. This technology, created in the 1980s, consists of "recovering the virus from a DNA copy of the RNA genome", as explained by INRA.
Tuesday's video is not the first to claim to reveal the truth about the origin of the coronavirus. At the end of January, other people claimed that it had been created in an American laboratory in 2003. Once again, they confused the viruses.