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Coronavirus is a respiratory virus it can be found in the nose, throat, and lungs. The virus can be spread by touching and contacting.
Wuhan coronavirus mostly is seen in the lungs other than in the nose, or throat. When the virus in the lungs is expelled, it could possibly be spread through the air. Which is inhaled into the lungs of the recipient?
The natural reservoir of the virus is likely to be bats. Coronavirus belongs to the Betacoronavirus group of enveloped, single-stranded RNA viruses. It infects wild animals, birds, and humans. Which results in occasional outbreaks and infections without apparent symptoms. A key protein essential for the coronavirus to infect humans has been identified.
Similarities to SARS
Coronavirus is about 85% similar to the SARS and 40% similar to the MERS. In the SARS, spike protein (S-protein) is essential for the virus to attach to the host cell receptor.
The researchers evaluated the coronavirus S-protein’s ability to interact with human cell receptors. The binding between the novel virus and the human cell receptor is weaker than SARS. But it is still considered to be a strong one.
It is more likely these coronaviruses share a common ancestor resembling the bat coronavirus HKU9-1. The virus particles are normally, spherical. Virus diameters differ from 60nm to 140 nm (nanometers). They have distinctive spikes about 9 to 12 nanometers. Which gives them the appearance of a solar corona.
About one-third of patients admitted to the hospital had underlying diseases. Including diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease. Their median age was 49 years. Over 60% of these patients had been exposed to the Huanan seafood market.
There are similar symptoms between the novel coronavirus cases and SARS. The common symptoms included fever, cough, and fatigue. About 55% of the patients had difficulty breathing but novel patients have no upper respiratory tract symptoms such a runny nose, sneezing, and sore throat.
Children and young people can be infectious without having any symptoms.
Latest updates on coronavirus outbreak