A batch of early coronavirus data that went missing for a year has emerged from hiding.
In June, an American scientist discovered that more than 200 genetic sequences from COVID-19 patient samples isolated in China early in the pandemic had puzzlingly been removed from an online database. With some digital sleuthing, Jesse Bloom, a virus expert at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, managed to track down 13 of the sequences on Google Cloud.
When Bloom shared his experience in a report posted online, he wrote that it “seems likely that the sequences were deleted to obscure their existence.”
But now an odd explanation has emerged, stemming from an editorial oversight by a scientific journal. And the