Searching for the Origin of Covid-19 (Video Available)

Speaker: Alina Chan, at the Broad Institute at MIT and Harvard University

Date: November 15, 2021 at 4:00PM - 5:30PM

In May 2020, I co-authored a preprint that asked whether SARS-CoV-2 might have emerged naturally or from a lab. The preprint propelled me into an unpredictable year-and-a-half journey of searching for the origin of Covid-19. In May 2021, I agreed to write down what I had learnt in a book that will be released on November 16, VIRAL: The Search for the Origin of Covid-19.

In this Landmark talk, I will discuss the role of scientists in the investigation of how SARS-CoV-2 emerged in Wuhan in late 2019. I will also describe the available data relevant to the origin of Covid-19, and how scientists can and must play an important role in what is possibly the most important mystery of our generation. This virus will be with us forever. We need to know where it came from.

Dr. Alina Chan is a postdoctoral researcher with a background in medical genetics, synthetic biology, and vector engineering. At the Broad Institute of MIT & Harvard, Dr. Chan is currently creating next generation vectors for human gene therapy. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Chan began to investigate problems relevant to finding the origins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and in parallel spearheaded the development of the COVID-19 CoV Genetics (covidcg.org) browser for scientists worldwide to rapidly track virus lineages and mutations by locations and date ranges of interest. Dr. Chan is the author of Viral: The Search for the Origin of COVID-19.


Publications

Hopper RK, Abman SH, Elia EG, Avitabile CM, Yung D, Mullen MP, Austin ED, Bates A, Handler SS, Feinstein JA, Ivy DD, Kinsella JP, Mandl KD, Raj JU, Sleeper LA, . Pulmonary Hypertension in Children with Down Syndrome: Results from the Pediatric Pulmonary Hypertension Network Registry. The Journal of pediatrics 2022.

Wang X, Zhang HG, Xiong X, Hong C, Weber GM, Brat GA, Bonzel CL, Luo Y, Duan R, Palmer NP, Hutch MR, Gutiérrez-Sacristán A, Bellazzi R, Chiovato L, Cho K, Dagliati A, Estiri H, García-Barrio N, Griffier R, Hanauer DA, Ho YL, Holmes JH, Keller MS, Klann MEng JG, L'Yi S, Lozano-Zahonero S, Maidlow SE, Makoudjou A, Malovini A, Moal B, Moore JH, Morris M, Mowery DL, Murphy SN, Neuraz A, Yuan Ngiam K, Omenn GS, Patel LP, Pedrera-Jiménez M, Prunotto A, Jebathilagam Samayamuthu M, Sanz Vidorreta FJ, Schriver ER, Schubert P, Serrano-Balazote P, South AM, Tan ALM, Tan BWL, Tibollo V, Tippmann P, Visweswaran S, Xia Z, Yuan W, Zöller D, Kohane IS, Avillach P, Guo Z, Cai T, . SurvMaximin: Robust federated approach to transporting survival risk prediction models. Journal of biomedical informatics 2022.

Torous J, Stern AD, Bourgeois FT. Regulatory considerations to keep pace with innovation in digital health products. NPJ digital medicine 2022.

Levy S, Wisk LE, Minegishi M, Ertman B, Lunstead J, Brogna M, Weitzman ER. Association of Screening and Brief Intervention With Substance Use in Massachusetts Middle and High Schools. JAMA network open 2022.

Nielsen M, Presti M, Sztupinszki Z, Jensen AWP, Draghi A, Chamberlain CA, Schina A, Yde CW, Wojcik J, Szallasi Z, Crowther MD, Svane IM, Donia M. Co-existing alterations of MHC class I antigen presentation and IFNγ signaling mediate acquired resistance of melanoma to post-PD-1 immunotherapy. Cancer immunology research 2022.