Those who engage in “gain of function” research are committing a crime against humanity. So if you, Dr Smarty Pants Researcher, engage in this research, you might end up in jail, rather than at Stockholm, for the Nobel Awards Banquet.
Scientists do this because there is money for the research. And prestige, should you accomplish a breakthrough. And if you kill a few million people, Oh well.
There was a whole series of “Doctors Trials at Nürnberg, where a few Doctors were hanged for their “research”. I’m not saying anybody should swing for this, but somehow, the scientists need to be held accountable for screwing over innocent people in order to improve their Curriculum Vitae.
But I’m not holding my breath.