A-year-old report had warned China of a potential coronavirus outbreak. In the report, Chinese scientists called for urgent countermeasures to stop such an outbreak.
Our Eum Ji-young has more. It turns out a Chinese research team warned the medical world last year of the potential for the outbreak of coronaviruses from bats.
The report, titled ‘Bat Coronaviruses in China,’ was published in the international journal ‘Viruses’ in March 2019 and said it was highly probable that future coronavirus outbreaks would originate from bats and it was likely to sprout up in China. In drawing up the report, scientists from research institutes, including the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, collected information from past epidemiology studies on bat coronaviruses in China. The report said among the three coronaviruses identified over the past two decades: SARS, MERS and Swine Acute Diarrhea Syndrome or SADS, two of them, SARS and SADS first emerged in China. SARS and MERS broke out in 2003 and 2012 respectively and caused global pandemics that killed thousands of people, while SADS slammed China’s swine industry in 2017. The research team pointed out that bats are important reservoir hosts for coronaviruses. They said bats are the only mammals that can fly, which allows them to have a longer range of migration compared to land mammals. Also, bats carry major alpha and beta coronavirus species that can transmit and cause diseases in people. The report emphasized it was urgent to conduct more studies on bat coronaviruses in China as the country is a ‘hotspot’ in which another outbreak could occur. Researchers said another coronavirus could break out in China as it’s the third largest territory in the world and the nation with the world’s largest population. They said China’s diverse climates and great biodiversity could spawn bat-borne viruses. The report also noted that Chinese food culture where many Chinese people believe live slaughtered animals are more nutritious could increase the chance of viral transmission.
A shocking video has emerged from China of the moment a woman eats live scorpions off a stick. She stares straight into the camera and happily munches away at the tiny wriggling insects one by one. Live scorpions are part of a traditional dish in China and are often used in Chinese medicines. When eaten, they are said to make your blood hotter in cold weather and cure a number of conditions.
The 20-second video, originally posted on Chinese video-sharing site Miaopai, shows the unidentified woman holding about a dozen wooden sticks in her left hand.
On each stick three or four baby scorpions have been skewered on like a kebab. The insects are still alive, their pincers, legs and stingers are clearly moving even though they have a stick running through their bodies.
Wearing a black and white polka dot top, the woman then stares at the person filming then straight into the lens and begins her feast.
One by one she bites the scorpions off the stick whole and munches away. From the look on her face and the speed she is eating them, she seems to be enjoying the taste.
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