Current trends and epidemiology on novel covid-19: Pandemic

Manoj Kumar Katual, Gurfateh Singh, S L Harikumar

Abstract


The novel SARS-CoV-2 corona virus that emerged in the city of Wuhan, China, in 2019 and has since caused a large scale COVID-19 epidemic and spread to more than 190 other countries is the product of natural evolution, according to findings published today in the journal Nature Medicine. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can cause illnesses ranging widely in severity. The first known severe illness caused by a coronavirus emerged with the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) epidemic in China. A second outbreak of severe illness began in 2012 in Saudi Arabia with the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). On December 31 of last year, Chinese authorities alerted the World Health Organization of an outbreak of a novel strain of coronavirus causing severe illness, which was subsequently named SARS-CoV-2. As of February 20, 2020, nearly 167,500 COVID-19 cases have been documented, although many more mild cases have likely gone undiagnosed. The virus has killed over 6,600 people. Shortly after the epidemic began, Chinese scientists sequenced the genome of SARS-CoV-2 and made the data available to researchers worldwide. The resulting genomic sequence data has shown that Chinese authorities rapidly detected the epidemic and that the number of COVID-19 cases have been increasing because of human to human transmission after a single introduction into the human population. Andersen and collaborators at several other research institutions used this sequencing data to explore the origins and evolution of SARS-CoV-2 by focusing in on several tell-tale feature.

 

Keywords: COVID-19, Severe acute respiratory syndrome.


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