KANCHANABURI, Thailand (WR) — Researchers in Thailand have been trekking although the countryside to catch bats of their caves in an effort to hint the murky origins of the coronavirus.

Preliminary analysis has already pointed to bats because the supply of the virus that has greater than 20.5 million individuals and brought about the deaths of over 748,000 worldwide, based on Johns Hopkins College knowledge. The closest match to the coronavirus has been present in horseshoe bats in Yunnan in southern China.

Thailand has 19 species of horseshoe bats however researchers stated they haven’t but been examined for the brand new coronavirus.

Thai researchers hiked up a hill in Sai Yok Nationwide Park within the western province of Kanchanaburi to arrange nets to lure some 200 bats from three totally different caves.

The crew from the Thai Purple Cross Rising Infectious Illnesses-Well being Science Heart took saliva, blood and stool samples from the bats earlier than releasing them. They labored via the night time and into the subsequent day, taking samples not solely from horseshoe bats but additionally from different bat species they caught with a purpose to higher perceive pathogens carried by the animals.

The crew was headed by Supaporn Wacharapluesadee, the middle’s deputy chief, who has studied bats and illnesses related to them for greater than 20 years. He was a part of the group that helped Thailand affirm the primary COVID-19 case outdoors China in January.

She believes it’s probably they may discover in Thailand’s bats the identical virus that causes COVID-19.

“The pandemic is borderless,” she stated. “The illness can journey with bats. It might go wherever.”