Update on novel coronavirus outbreak in China.


  • Heather Mason
  • Univadis Medical News
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A single seafood market is believed to be the source of the novel coronavirus outbreak in central China.

The mystery pneumonia outbreak in Wuhan, central China has been identified as a novel coronavirus after laboratory testing ruled out influenza, avian influenza, adenovirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).

Among the 41 confirmed cases, seven are severely ill and there has been one death, which occurred in a patient with serious underlying medical complications. Currently, there have been no case of infection with this virus outside Wuhan. There have been no cases among healthcare workers and no clear evidence of human to human transmission.

Comprehensive investigations are continuing to better understand the outbreak’s epidemiology, clinical picture, source, modes of transmission, and extent of infection, as well as the countermeasures implemented. A total of 763 close contacts have been identified and followed up, with no additional cases of infection since 3 January 2020.

The whole-genome sequence has now been mapped and shared with WHO and other authorities, which will be important for countries to develop diagnostic kits.