Former CDC Director Robert Redfield: Gain-of Function Research Likely ‘Caused the Greatest Pandemic Our World Has Seen’

Former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) director Dr. Robert Redfield testified on Wednesday that gain-of-function research has never produced a treatment or a life-saving vaccine that he’s aware of and “probably caused the greatest pandemic our world has seen.”

The doctor also said he was kept out of the loop when NIAID Director Anthony Fauci and other virologists were formulating their talking points on the origin of COVID-19.

Redfield and three other expert witnesses appeared before the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic to discuss the origins of COVID-19.

Redfield, a virologist, was director of the CDC from 2018 to 2021, and served on former President Trump’s Coronavirus Task Force throughout 2020.

“Based on my initial analysis of the data, I came to believe, and I still believe today, that it indicates that COVID-19 more likely was the result of an accidental lab leak than a result of an accidental lab leak than a result of a natural spillover event,” Redfield said in his opening statement. Fauci and his cohorts maintained that the virus “spilled over” from animals sold at the Huanan market in Wuhan.

“While many believe that gain-of function research is critical to get ahead of viruses by developing vaccines, in this case, I believe it was the exact opposite—unleashing a new virus on the world without any means of stopping it and resulting in the deaths of millions of people,” Redfield testified.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) questioned Redfield about an email Dr. Fauci received two days after Coronavirus task force was established. In the email, Dr. Kristian Andersen, a professor in the Department of Immunology and Microbiology at Scripps Research, said the virus looked engineered.

“The unusual features of the virus make up a really small part of the genome (<0.1%) so one has to look really closely at all the sequences to see that some of the features (potentially) look engineered,” Andersen wrote to Fauci on Jan. 31, 2020.

Jordan asked Redfield if Fauci shared that email with him.

“As a member of the task force and head of the CDC, did he share that email with you?” Jordan asked.

Redfield answered, “no,” Fauci did not share the email.

The next day, on February 1, Jordan pointed out, virologist Dr. Robert F. Garry of Tulane University sent Fauci another email saying, “I don’t know how this happens in nature but it would be easy to do in a lab.”

“Did he share that email with you?” the congressman asked.

Redfield again responded that Fauci did not share the email.

“You didn’t see either one of those emails, even though you’re head of the CDC? Even though you’re on the Coronavirus task force that had been formed just two days earlier?” asked Jordan.

“No,” Redfield replied.

Jordan noted that only three days later, after a conference call with Fauci, Dr. Andersen and Dr. Garry changed their position 180 degrees. In a widely cited article in the journal Nature Medicine, the pair declared flatly, “Our analyses clearly show that SARS-CoV-2 is not a laboratory construct or a purposefully manipulated virus.

“The question is why” the virologists changed their tune, Jordan said.


The doctor said that he told Fauci early in 2020 that he did not believe the “natural spillover” theory  was “scientifically plausible” with the origins of COVID-19 and was excommunicated from talks on the virus.

“It was told to me they wanted a single narrative and I had a different point of view,” Redfield explained.

When asked if gain-of-function research has ever stopped a pandemic, Redfield responded “no, on the contrary, I think it probably caused the greatest pandemic our world has seen.” The virologist said that he was not aware of gain-of-function research ever creating a treatment or a “life-saving vaccine.”

The virologist also testified that it is likely that American tax dollars funded the gain-of-function research that led to COVID being unleashed on the world.

“I think it [taxpayer funding] did—not only from the NIH, but from the State Department, USAID, and the Department of Defense,” Redfield said.

Redfield described several highly suspicious events that took place at the Wuhan lab in September of 2019.

“In Sept. 2019, three things happened in that lab. One is they deleted the sequences. Highly irregular, researchers don’t like to do that,” he said. “The second thing is they changed the command and control from civilian to military. Highly unusual. The third, which is very telling, is they let a contractor redo the ventilation system in that laboratory. Clearly, there was strong evidence that a significant event happened in that laboratory in September.”

Redfield called for a moratorium of the practice “until we have a broader debate.”

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About Debra Heine

Debra Heine is a conservative Catholic mom of six and longtime political pundit. She has written for several conservative news websites over the years, including Breitbart and PJ Media.

Photo: WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 08: Dr. Robert Redfield, former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention under former President Donald Trump, testifies before the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill on March 08, 2023 in Washington, DC. Redfield testified that he believes he was kept out of meetings with National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci and other government leaders because of his opinion that COVID-19 originated in a lab in Wuhan, China. Witnesses and members of the subcommittee aired and debated their disagreements about the possible origins of the COVID-19 coronavirus and whether it came from nature or a laboratory in China. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)