During a Thursday appearance on The Joe Rogan Experience, biologist Bret Weinstein claimed that the theory that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a bat-borne pathogen that was transmitted to people is looking "less and less likely."
"The story that is looking more and more likely, what I would call the lab-leak hypothesis, is looking ever stronger," he said.
Weinstein claimed to have spoken with others who agree on the theory. Although the biologist noted the argument is not conclusive -- and that it's still possible COVID-19 came from the wild -- he said the virus has "several components" that suggest it is the "result of manipulation in the lab."
Weinstein suggested that COVID-19 may be the result of "gain of function" research, which he explained is when researchers add specific capacity to a virus to study how it works. From here, he said, scientists conduct passaging -- where they infect creatures with a virus that is then allowed to pass through other individuals of the species.
"And what happens is evolution. So there is a strong possibility that this virus was under study, that it was enhanced in the laboratory, and that we are dealing with consequences that are the result of that enhancement that make it more dangerous than it would otherwise be."