Is the new virus more 'deadly' than flu? Not exactly

20 Février, 2020, 19:49 | Auteur: Yves Courtet
  • Is the new virus more 'deadly' than flu? Not exactly

China reported thousands new virus cases and more deaths in its update Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2020 on a disease outbreak that has caused milder illness in most people, an assessment that promoted guarded optimism from global health authorities.

A team of microbiologists from Hong Kong University who studied the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak about 13 years ago had warned of yet another devastating coronavirus (CoV) in areas around Wuhan, the epicentre of the Covid-19 today.

"If confirmed, this is very important", said Dr Gregory Poland, a virologist and vaccine researcher with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, who was not involved with the study. Researchers in Guangdong province monitored the amount of coronavirus in the 18 patients.

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People who have not traveled to China can be tested for the coronavirus if they have been in contact with someone who has traveled to the country and show respiratory symptoms or fever, according to the latest guidelines from the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In an interview with China Central Television Wednesday night, Wang Chen, vice president of the Chinese academy of Engineering, said since SARS has strong transmissibility and pathogenicity, it is hard for the virus to survive and continue to spread among people. "This virus is clearly much more capable of spreading between humans than any other novel coronavirus we've ever seen. This is more akin to the spread of flu", said Andersen, who was not involved with the study.

The researchers said that the virus can be transmitted early in the course of the infection, and suggest that controlling the virus will require an approach different from what worked with SARS, which primarily involved controlling its spread in a hospital setting.

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