The research was based on high-resolution satellite imagery from parking lots at hospitals in Wuhan, where the disease appeared in late 2019, and data on search engine related symptoms such as “cough” and “diarrhea”.
“The increase in hospital traffic and data from research on symptoms in search engines in Wuhan preceded the recorded start of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in December 2019,” the study said.
“Although we cannot confirm that the increase was directly related to the new virus, our data support another recent study that showed that the virus appeared before it was identified in the Juan Sea Market,” Harvard said in a statement.
“The findings also confirm the hypothesis that the virus appeared naturally in southern China and may have been circulating when the first outbreaks of the virus appeared in Wuhan,” the study said.
naftemporiki.gr with information from Reuters