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SATIRE: Mosquitoes Inoculated With Viagra Have Not Escaped From Wuhan Laboratory.

Photo source: Wired 2 mins read

Claim: Viral Whatsapp messages claim thousands of mosquitoes inoculated with Viagra have escaped from a high security laboratory in China

The report is a satire and should not be taken seriously.

Full Text

A viral message relating to the COVID-19 infodemic circulating on Whatsapp in Sierra Leone purports that thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes inoculated with Viagra have escaped from a high security laboratory in China and that their bite can lead to continuous erection and increase libido in men. 

The introductory message accompanying the link reads: 

“the effect of one mosquitos bite can last up to 40 hours and symptoms include an increase in libido, sexual arousal and possibly a very large erection”-Dr. Wengi Ying Yin Jing”. 

Verification

The viral claim of inoculated mosquitoes with Viagra escaping from a security laboratory in Wuhan Institute of Virology was published by the World Daily Report website

We found it to be a satirical website. The site has under its logo the disclaimer “Where facts don’t matter”. The “ABOUT US” section on the website also states the following: “WNDR assumes however all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website – even those based on real people –  are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.”

However, the introductory paragraph before the viral link that has gone viral on social media does not indicate that the content is satirical, thereby unintentionally misleading readers. 

Moreover, the image of a purported 87 years old Wuhan resident attached to the article who is purported to have been hospitalized because he was bitten by one of the genetically modified mosquitoes has been wrongly used. The image is originally a Japanese super century who was aged 114 years before he died on September 28, 2003. Yukichi Chuganji was long dead before this claim appeared on their website as a victim of the genetically modified mosquito bite.

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