An expert has claimed that coronavirus may not have originated in China and could have been lying dormant across the world.
The virus could have emerged due to favourable environmental conditions, said Dr Tom Jefferson, from the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine (CEBM) at Oxford University.
Dr Jefferson pointed to a series of recent discoveries of the coronavirus presence across the world before it emerged in China.
He said that traces of the virus were found in Spain, Italy and Brazil’s sewage, as samples prove this predates China’s discovery.
Dr Jefferson added, “I think the virus was already here, here meaning everywhere.
“We may be seeing a dormant virus that has been activated by environmental conditions.
“There was a case in the Falkland Islands in early February.
“Now where did that come from? There was a cruise ship that went from South Georgia to Buenos Aires, and the passengers were screened and then on day eight, when they started sailing towards the Weddell Sea, they got the first case.
“Was it in prepared food that was defrosted and activated? “
Dr Jefferson told The Daily Telegraph in an interview, that he has called for an investigation as to how and why coronavirus thrives in certain environments such as, meatpacking plants.
CEBM director Professor Carl Heneghan and Dr Jefferson both believe this may uncover new transmission routes, such as toilets.
He told the newspaper, “Strange things like this happened with Spanish Flu. In 1918, around 30% of the population of Western Samoa died of Spanish Flu and they hadn’t had any communication with the outside world.
“The explanation could only be that these agents don’t come or go anywhere. They are always here and, something ignites them, maybe human density or environmental conditions, and this is what we should look for.
“There is quite a lot of evidence of huge amounts of the virus in sewage all over the place, and an increasing amount of evidence there is faecal transmission.
“There is a high concentration where sewage is four degrees, which is the ideal temperature for it to be stabled and presumably activated. And meatpacking plants are often at four degrees.
“These outbreaks need to be investigated properly.”