A top virologist from China has warned that new viruses being discovered are “actually just the tip of the iceberg”.
In an interview on Chinese state television, virologist Shi Zhengli also called for greater international cooperation in the fight against epidemics such as Covid-19.
Zhengli is known as the ‘Bat Woman’ for her research about bats and the viruses associated with them.
Zhengli, the Deputy Director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, said research undertaken in viruses needs governments and scientists to be transparent with their findings, and cooperative, reports Dailymail.
She also said that it is ‘very regrettable’ when science is politicised.
Speaking to Chinese state television CCTN, Zhengli said, “The unknown viruses that we have discovered are actually just the tip of the iceberg.”
“If we want to prevent human beings from suffering from the next infectious disease outbreak, we must go in advance to learn of these unknown viruses carried by wild animals in nature and give early warnings,” Zhengli said.
“If we don’t study them, there will possibly be another outbreak,” she added.
Her interview comes after, both US President Donald Trump and his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have suggested that the Covid-19 originated in a laboratory in the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the pandemic erupted last December last month.