Virology under the microscope—a call for rational discourse

Goodrum, F. et al. (2023) Virology under the microscope—a call for rational discourse. mBio, 14, e00188-23. (doi: 10.1128/mbio.00188-23) (PMID:36700642) (PMCID:PMC9973315)

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Viruses have brought humanity many challenges: respiratory infection, cancer, neurological impairment and immunosuppression to name a few. Virology research over the last 60+ years has responded to reduce this disease burden with vaccines and antivirals. Despite this long history, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought unprecedented attention to the field of virology. Some of this attention is focused on concern about the safe conduct of research with human pathogens. A small but vocal group of individuals has seized upon these concerns – conflating legitimate questions about safely conducting virus-related research with uncertainties over the origins of SARS-CoV-2. The result has fueled public confusion and, in many instances, ill-informed condemnation of virology. With this article, we seek to promote a return to rational discourse. We explain the use of gain-of-function approaches in science, discuss the possible origins of SARS-CoV-2 and outline current regulatory structures that provide oversight for virological research in the United States. By offering our expertise, we – a broad group of working virologists – seek to aid policy makers in navigating these controversial issues. Balanced, evidence-based discourse is essential to addressing public concern while maintaining and expanding much-needed research in virology.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This commentary is simultaneously published by the following ASM journals: Journal of Virology, mBio, and mSphere.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hutchinson, Dr Edward
Authors: Goodrum, F., Lowen, A., Lakdawala, S., Alwine, J., Casadevall, A., Imperiale, M., Atwood, W., Avgousti, D., Baines, J., Banfield, B., Banks, L., Bhaduri-McIntosh, S., Bhattacharya, D., Blanco-Melo, D., Bloom, D., Boon, A., Boulant, S., Brandt, C., Broadbent, A., Brooke, C., Cameron, C., Campos, S., Caposio, P., Chan, G., Cliffe, A., Coffin, J., Collins, K., Damania, B., Daugherty, M., Debbink, K., DeCaprio, J., Dermody, T., Dikeakos, J., DiMaio, D., Dinglasan, R., Duprex, W. P., Dutch, R., Elde, N., Emerman, M., Enquist, L., Fane, B., Fernandez-Sesma, A., Flenniken, M., Frappier, L., Frieman, M., Frueh, K., Gack, M., Gaglia, M., Gallagher, T., Galloway, D., García-Sastre, A., Geballe, A., Glaunsinger, B., Goff, S., Greninger, A., Hancock, M., Harris, E., Heaton, N., Heise, M., Heldwein, E., Hogue, B., Horner, S., Hutchinson, E., Hyser, J., Jackson, W., Kalejta, R., Kamil, J., Karst, S., Kirchhoff, F., Knipe, D., Kowalik, T., Lagunoff, M., Laimins, L., Langlois, R., Lauring, A., Lee, B., Leib, D., Liu, S.-L., Longnecker, R., Lopez, C., Luftig, M., Lund, J., Manicassamy, B., McFadden, G., McIntosh, M., Mehle, A., Miller, W. A., Mohr, I., Moody, C., Moorman, N., Moscona, A., Mounce, B., Munger, J., Münger, K., Murphy, E., Naghavi, M., Nelson, J., Neufeldt, C., Nikolich, J., O'Connor, C., Ono, A., Orenstein, W., Ornelles, D., Ou, J.-h., Parker, J., Parrish, C., Pekosz, A., Pellett, P., Pfeiffer, J., Plemper, R., Polyak, S., Purdy, J., Pyeon, D., Quinones-Mateu, M., Renne, R., Rice, C., Schoggins, J., Roller, R., Russell, C., Sandri-Goldin, R., Sapp, M., Schang, L., Schmid, S., Schultz-Cherry, S., Semler, B., Shenk, T., Silvestri, G., Simon, V., Smith, G., Smith, J., Spindler, K., Stanifer, M., Subbarao, K., Sundquist, W., Suthar, M., Sutton, T., Tai, A., Tarakanova, V., tenOever, B., Tibbetts, S., Tompkins, S., Toth, Z., van Doorslaer, K., Vignuzzi, M., Wallace, N., Walsh, D., Weekes, M., Weinberg, J., Weitzman, M., Weller, S., Whelan, S., White, E., Williams, B., Wobus, C., Wong, S., and Yurochko, A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Infection & Immunity > Centre for Virus Research
Journal Name:mBio
Publisher:American Society for Microbiology
ISSN (Online):2150-7511
Published Online:26 January 2023
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2023 Goodrum et al.
First Published:First published in mBio 14(1):e00188-23
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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