Zhengli Shi

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Person.png Zhengli Shi  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Born26 May 1964
Xixia County, Henan, China
Alma materWuhan University, Montpellier 2 University
Interests • coronaviruses
Interest ofEric Donaldson
Chinese virologist whom Fauci funded to perform "gain-of-function" research on naturally occurring bat coronaviruses to increase their virulence.

Professor Zhengli Shi, whom commercially-controlled media dubbed 'Bat woman'[1], is/was a Chinese virologist and close colleague of Peter Daszak[2] and Yusen Zhou.[3] She was the director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases of the Wuhan Institute of Virology at the time of the COVID-19 outbreak in late 2019 in Wuhan and reportedly "was the first to identify the gene sequence for COVID-19".[4][5]


Zhengli Shi was born in China in 1964. She graduated from Wuhan University in 1987. She received her master's degree from the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Wuhan Institute of Virology in 1990. She did a Ph.D at Montpellier 2 University, France, from 1996 to 2000.


Since 2005 Shi has been working on the emergence of coronaviruses with Peter Daszak.[2]

Shi is the director of the Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases of the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Her research focuses on viral pathogen discovery through traditional and high-throughput sequencing techniques. She has been studying the wildlife-borne viral pathogens, particularly bat-borne viruses since 2004. Her group has discovered diverse novel viruses/virus antibodies in bats, including SARS-like coronaviruses, adenoviruses, adeno-associated viruses, circoviruses, paramyxoviruses and filoviruses in China. With her international collaborators she has provided evidence that bats are natural reservoirs of SARS-CoV. She has coauthored over 130 publications on viral pathogen identification, diagnosis and epidemiology.[6]

Creation of new coronaviruses

Shi Zhengli in protective suit.jpg

In 2013, "Shi began altering parts of the coronavirus" to study how easily it could cross species barriers[7], which prompted debate about the safety of "gain-of-function" research.

In October 2014, the US government announced a temporary moratorium on funding of "gain-of-function" research on the SARS and MERS viruses, pending a review of the risks.[8]

In 2015 Shi's team published a paper detailing a genetically engineered new coronavirus.[9] Simon Wain-Hobson issued a now infamous warning that the researchers' novel virus “grows remarkably well” in human cells and that "if the virus escaped, nobody could predict the trajectory."[10]

Opinions on Covid-19

Like Peter Daszak,[11] Zhengli Shi has stated that Covid-19 was not laboratory created.

“The novel 2019 coronavirus is nature punishing the human race for keeping uncivilized living habits. I, Shi Zhengli, swear on my life that it has nothing to do with our laboratory. I advise those who believe and spread rumors from harmful media sources, as well as those who believe the unreliable so-called academic analysis of Indian scholars, to shut their stinking mouths.”
Shi Zhengli (February 2020)  [12]

Selected Publications


Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:Logistical and Technical Exploration into the Origins of the COVID-19 virusreport31 January 2020Jonathan Jay CoueyReport of a thorough investigation into the origins of the virus that caused the pandemic. Whilst the author is circumspect, the evidence presented points clearly to the virus being the product of laboratory engineering.