EcoHealth Alliance grants suspended

The Biden administration has suspended federal grants issued to EcoHealth Alliance, the infectious disease research group caught up in a controversy over its work in China, and plans to bar it from receiving future funding.

The Health and Human Services Department dispatched its decision in a letter Tuesday, two weeks after House lawmakers grilled EcoHealth President Peter Daszak on the nonprofit’s research, oversight, and safety measures, particularly its work with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and contentious infectious disease studies known as gain-of-function research.

Daszak denied that the group ever conducted gain-of-function work, in which the risk posed by a pathogen is potentially increased by techniques such as adding or removing genes. However Republicans and Democrats alike criticized EcoHealth in separate reports for failing or delaying to report high-risk studies. In particular, documents show EcoHealth did not submit its 2019 annual report to federal officials for nearly two years…

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