The COVID-19 pandemic is commonly thought to have passed from an animal source to humans in China in late 2019, but despite much of the world now recovering or suffering second and third spikes of the virus, the virus' source is still the source of a lot of controversy. The origin of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that caused the COVID-19 pandemic has fed into major political tensions between the world’s two foremost superpowers, the United States and China, as US president Donald Trump repeatedly stressed the virus came from China, calling it the “China virus” or “kung-flu”. However numerous studies are now casting doubt on whether a Wuhan wet market in China was in fact the source of the virus, with SARS-CoV-2 antibodies being found retrospectively in blood and sewage samples taken internationally far earlier than was previously thought.
What was the origin of the SARS-nCoV-2 virus that started the COVID-19 global pandemic?
What is the best evidence we have that indicates where the virus crossed over into a human population?
Or are we unlikely to ever find patient zero, the first human case of COVID-19?