Dr. Andrew Huff was a vice president at EcoHealth Alliance, an organization at the center of investigations into the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic. He tells Liz Collin what he saw.
Dr. Andrew Huff’s expertise in bioterrorism and pandemic preparedness left him no choice but to blow the whistle when he put together the pieces of the COVID-19 puzzle.
Since speaking out last fall, Dr. Huff has been “repeatedly hacked,” put under surveillance, and tailed, acts that seem “over the top” for simply speaking the truth, he said in a recent interview on Liz Collin Reports.
Huff is the former vice president of EcoHealth Alliance, an Army veteran, and the author of a forthcoming book from Simon & Schuster called, “The Truth about Wuhan: How I Uncovered the Biggest Lie in History.”
With degrees in psychology, geographic information systems, and security technologies, all from the University of Minnesota, Huff was an ideal candidate for a senior scientist in data technology position for EcoHealth Alliance.
Huff grew up in Anoka County, entered the Army, went to the U of M for his undergraduate and master’s degrees, and later earned his Ph.D. as well. He was interested in national security and began working for Sandia National Laboratories, a prestigious facility for national security research.
In his position at Sandia, his work focused on pandemic preparedness and response while he continued his research in biowarfare and bioterrorism. But the longer Huff stayed at Sandia, the more classified his work became, leaving him unable to talk about it, something he felt could lead to a metaphorical “death sentence” for a scientist.
That’s when he found and was offered the job at EcoHealth Alliance, which he accepted in 2014.
He said EcoHealth Alliance’s mission statement promoted investing in conservation, preserving land, and reducing risk for disease to emerge and spread.
Huff’s position involved building advanced biosurveillance capabilities for the Department of Defense.
“I knew that [I would be doing work for the Department of Defense] going into it, and I didn’t really think that there was anything nefarious behind it,” Huff said.
His direct supervisor and boss was Dr. Peter Daszak, a name that has become well-known since the onset of COVID-19.
“A bunch of interesting things happened when I first started working there,” Huff said.
He was asked to review a research proposal in late 2014 that was submitted to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, under the direction of Dr. Anthony Fauci, according to a sworn declaration he provided to Congress last month.
“I didn’t think anything of it. I’m new to an organization, my boss and the other people I worked with asked me to review an academic scientific proposal. That’s totally normal, it happens in every scientific organization,” Huff said.
The proposal involved “gain-of-function” research, a practice which was in flux at the time in the U.S. government, he said. Huff said the proposal indicated that gain-of-function work on SARS-CoV-2 was already underway.
“I attest that I reviewed the proposal that was submitted to NIH which detailed the gain-of-function virology work that was being conducted to create the agent known as SARS-CoV-2, which causes the disease known as COVID-19,” Huff said in his declaration.
Dr. Huff is against this practice, he added. He explained gain-of-function involves enhancing the infectivity and transmissibility of a disease being worked on within a lab. In other words, it makes the agent gain function, thereby making it more harmful.
“My opposition to Gain of Functions research stemmed from my Ph.D. studies taught by my Committee Chair, Dr. Michael T. Osterholm, who was also President Joe Biden’s COVID advisor,” Huff said in his declaration.
Gain-of-function work is conducted under the premise that, in a lab, scientists can make a disease more harmful and evolve faster in order to “develop a medical countermeasure,” a vaccine or a drug, to get ahead of the evolution of the disease.
“The worst part is they defer their responsibility of what’s called a biosecurity officer or institutional biosafety committee to a subcontractor. That subcontractor is the Wuhan Institute of Virology,” Huff said.
Having a biosafety or biosecurity officer or committee is essential and expected in this field, Huff explained. EcoHealth Alliance did not have a biosafety committee, and subcontracting it was not allowed under federal policy, he said.
Huff said he brought this concern to Daszak, and Daszak said they did not have a biosafety officer but that the issue would be taken care of.
“Why would I argue with my new boss? I’m just hired into this place. He probably knows things that I don’t,” Huff thought at the time.
But he said he noticed Daszak “always had a flippant attitude toward anything security related.” Huff wanted to take on the responsibilities of a biosafety officer himself but was shot down, he explained.
Huff said he voiced concern that Wuhan may be “ripping the organization off.”
“Not so much as they were doing anything to hurt us … [but] genetic material is worth a lot of money,” he said. His concerns were quickly dismissed.
As he was promoted in the organization, he began to ask questions about finances, like how much money was being put into conservation, the alleged purpose of the company. He found that no money was being used for conservation of animals or land, he said.
Huff ended up leaving EcoHealth Alliance in 2016 after issues with another program called Predict came to light, and after he found out that Daszak had been lying to him about day-to-day business dealings, he said.
“There is not one bit of evidence that this naturally emerged. None,” Huff told Alpha News.
He has since filed a lawsuit with Renz Law LLC against EcoHealth Alliance in the state of New York.
He brought forward his concerns with the Wuhan Institute of Virology and was pushed to the side, he said.
“That’s negligence at best. At worst, in this case, you could say it’s murder or manslaughter, something to that effect,” Huff said.
He believes the lab leak was an accident that could have been prevented, and the public needs to know exactly what happened. His biggest concern is that if it remains unknown what went wrong with both policy and the “actual science in the laboratory,” nothing will prevent something similar from happening again.
“If we keep funding gain-of function-work, it’s going to happen again,” he said.
“The problem with [gain-of-function work] is that, fundamentally, it’s naive of humans to think that we can evolve an agent or disease in a laboratory the same way that it would evolve in nature,” he said.
“Day by day there’s more medical evidence coming up, more epidemiology, more research showing that there are a lot of side effects to the mRNA COVID shots. … From a public health policy and research standpoint, what are we doing here? None of it makes sense,” he continued.
Listen to Dr. Huff’s full interview with Liz Collin here. Preorder his book, “The Truth about Wuhan: How I Uncovered the Biggest Lie in History,” here.