At least 550,000 cases. Maybe 4.4 million. Or something in between. Like weather forecasters, researchers who use mathematical equations to project how bad a disease outbreak might become are used to uncertainties and incomplete data, and Covid-19, the disease caused by the new-to-humans coronavirus that began circulating in Wuhan, China, late last year, has those everywhere you look. That can make the mathematical models of outbreaks, with their wide range of forecasts, seem like guesswork gussied up with differential equations; the eightfold difference in projected Covid-19 cases in Wuhan, calculated by a team from the U.S. and Canada, isn’t unusual for the early weeks of an outbreak of a never-before-seen illness. But infectious-disease models have been approximating reality better and better in recent years, thanks to a better understanding of everything from how germs behave to

At least 11 critically ill people have been treated with therapy, Chinese pharmaceutical company claims. TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Convalescent plasma collected from patients who have contracted the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) offers a beam of hope for effective treatment of those infected. In a statement released on Thursday (Feb. 13), Chinese pharmaceutical company Sino Biopharmaceutical Limited (Sino Biopharm) said the therapy has been used to treat 11 patients in critical condition — with promising effects, wrote ETToday. Three patients down with the virus at a hospital in the Jiangxia District of Wuhan were first to receive the plasma-based therapy on Feb. 8. Within 12 to 24 hours of the treatment, inflammation levels were reduced, the lymphocyte count elevated, and symptoms alleviated. More than 10 gravely ill cases are being treated the same way at the hospital, according to the

GENEVA (BLOOMBERG) - As the number of coronavirus cases jumps dramatically in China, a top infectious-disease scientist warns that things could get far worse: Two-thirds of the world's population could catch it. So says Professor Ira Longini, an adviser to the World Health Organisation who tracked studies of the virus' transmissibility in China. His estimate implies that there could eventually be billions more infections than the current official tally of about 60,000. If the virus spreads to anywhere near that extent, it will show the limitations of China's strict containment measures, including quarantining areas inhabited by tens of millions of people. WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has credited those steps with giving the rest of China and the world a "window" in which to prepare. Quarantines may slow the spread, but the virus had

GUANGZHOU, China (Reuters) - The coronavirus outbreak is hitting a peak in China this month and may be over by April, the government’s senior medical adviser said on Tuesday, in the latest assessment of an epidemic that has rattled the world. In an interview with Reuters, Zhong Nanshan, an 83-year-old epidemiologist who won fame for combating the SARS epidemic in 2003, shed tears about the doctor Li Wenliang who died last week after being reprimanded for raising the alarm. But Zhong was optimistic the new outbreak would soon slow, with the number of new cases already declining in some places. The peak should come in middle or late February, followed by a plateau and decrease, Zhong said, basing the forecast on mathematical modelling, recent events and government action. “I hope this outbreak or this event may be over

The incubation period for the deadly coronavirus could be as long as 24 days, according to a study led by Zhong Nanshan, an expert on respiratory infections and the head of the health commission team investigating the outbreak. The incubation period is the time it takes between being exposed to a virus and symptoms appearing. Previously, medical experts said that coronavirus, also known as corona, had an incubation period of between two and 14 days. But the study, published on Sunday, revealed that the incubation period is between three and 24 days, meaning that more people may have coronavirus without visible symptoms than previously thought. The lethal virus has killed more than 900 people and infected more than 40,600 people globally. The death toll for the coronavirus has surpassed the 774 fatalities from the outbreak of severe acute

The World Health Organization’s director-general cautioned Saturday that transmission of the new coronavirus outside of China may increase and countries should prepare for that possibility. “It’s slow now, but it may accelerate,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a press conference in Geneva. “So while it’s still slow there is a window of opportunity that we should use to the maximum in order to have a better outcome, and further decrease the progress and stop it.” Tedros’s warning came after health authorities in Singapore announced they had diagnosed the infection in a man with no travel history to China and no known link to other cases in Singapore. Singaporean authorities suggested — but did not order — that large public events be canceled or deferred. If public events are held, temperature screening of attendees should be

As China struggles to contain an epidemic caused by a new coronavirus, science is racing to develop vaccines to blunt the outbreak’s impact. Central to the effort is CEPI — the Oslo, Norway-based Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations — a global partnership created to spearhead development of vaccines in just this type of emergency. Two weeks after China announced on Jan. 7 that a new coronavirus had ignited a fast-growing outbreak of pneumonia cases in the city of Wuhan, CEPI announced funding for three efforts to develop a vaccine to protect against the virus, currently known as 2019-nCoV. A week later, it added a fourth. Just days after that, it announced major vaccine manufacturer GSK would allow its proprietary adjuvants — compounds that boost the effectiveness of vaccines — to be used in the response. But to

Ученые из Грейфсвальда и Бохума опубликовали раньше, чем планировалось, свои исследования о новом коронавирусе из Китая. Они предполагают, что вирус 2019-nCoV может жить на разных поверхностях при комнатной температуре до 9 дней. В среднем же он выживает 4-5 дней. Об этом пишет Der Tagesspiegel. Повышенная влажность и холод могут увеличить срок жизни вируса, отмечают ученые. Как пояснил Гюнтер Кампф из института Грейфсвальд, «вирус может распространяться через соприкосновение с поверхностями: в больнице это могут быть, например, дверные ручки, звонки, тумбочки, прикроватные столики и другие предметы, которыми пользуются пациенты». «Чтобы сделать такое заключение [о том, что вирус живет до 9 дней], надо было иметь выделенный вирус (как минимум 9 дней назад), подержать его на поверхности, а потом проверить,

По итогам прошлого года отставание нашей страны в сфере науки и технологий выглядит катастрофическим Данные в трех важнейших областях за 2019 год привел в своем блоге сетевой аналитик Дмитрий Милин: Высокотехнологичный экспорт Китай: $654 млрд Германия: $210 млрд США: $156 млрд Россия: $10 млрд Научные статьи Китай: 426 165 США: 408 985 Германия: 103 122 Россия: 59 134 Международные патентные заявки США: 56 142 Китай: 53 345 Германия: 19 883 Россия: 963 Здесь непременно стоит отметить еще и вот какую деталь: на первый взгляд отставание России в количестве научных статей выглядит не таким колоссальным, как по двум другим параметрам. Однако, это совершенно не так. Вот что заметил по этому поводу аналитик Владислав Иноземцев:

LONDON/BEIJING (Reuters) - Independent scientists questioned research on Friday that suggested that the outbreak of coronavirus disease spreading from China might have passed from bats to humans through the illegal traffic of pangolins. South China Agricultural University, which said it had led the research, said on its website that the “discovery will be of great significance for the prevention and control of the origin (of the new virus)”. China’s official Xinhua news agency reported that the genome sequence of the novel coronavirus strain separated from pangolins in the study was 99% identical to that from infected people. It said the research had found pangolins - the world’s only scaly mammals - to be “the most likely intermediate host.” But James Wood, head of the veterinary medicine department at Britain’s University of Cambridge, said the research was far from robust. “The evidence for the potential

Yu Zhao, Zixian Zhao, Yujia Wang, Yueqing Zhou, Yu Ma, Wei Zuo



A novel coronavirus (2019-nCov) was identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China in December of 2019. This new coronavirus has resulted in thousands of cases of lethal disease in China, with additional patients being identified in a rapidly growing number internationally. 2019-nCov was reported to share the same receptor, Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), with SARS-Cov. Here

Xiaoqiang Chai, Longfei Hu, Yan Zhang, Weiyu Han, Zhou Lu, Aiwu Ke, Jian Zhou, Guoming Shi, Nan Fang, Jia Fan, Jiabin Cai, Jue Fan, Fei Lan


Abstract A newly identified coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, has been posing significant threats to public health since December 2019. ACE2, the host cell receptor for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS), has recently been demonstrated in mediating 2019-nCoV infection. Interestingly, besides the respiratory system, substantial proportion of SARS and 2019-nCoV patients showed signs of various degrees of liver damage, the mechanism and implication of which have not yet been determined.

Summary Background In December, 2019, a pneumonia associated with the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) emerged in Wuhan, China. We aimed to further clarify the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of 2019-nCoV pneumonia. Methods In this retrospective, single-centre study, we included all confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV in Wuhan Jinyintan Hospital from Jan 1 to Jan 20, 2020. Cases were confirmed by real-time RT-PCR and were analysed for epidemiological, demographic, clinical, and radiological features and laboratory data. Outcomes were followed up until Jan 25, 2020. Findings Of the 99 patients with 2019-nCoV pneumonia, 49 (49%) had a history of exposure to the Huanan seafood market. The average age of the patients was 55·5 years (SD 13·1), including 67 men and 32 women. 2019-nCoV was detected in all patients by real-time RT-PCR. 50 (51%) patients had

With the new coronavirus spreading from person to person (possibly including from people without symptoms), reaching four continents, and traveling faster than SARS, driving it out of existence is looking increasingly unlikely. It’s still possible that quarantines and travel bans will first halt the outbreak and then eradicate the microbe, and the world will never see 2019-nCoV again, as epidemiologist Dr. Mike Ryan, head of health emergencies at the World Health Organization, told STAT on Saturday. That’s what happened with SARS in 2003. Many experts, however, view that happy outcome as increasingly unlikely. “Independent self-sustaining outbreaks [of 2019-nCoV] in major cities globally could become inevitable because of substantial exportation of pre-symptomatic cases,” scientists at the University of Hong Kong concluded in a paper published in The Lancet last week. Researchers

It is still too early, and available information is still too incomplete, to be certain about many aspects of the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak in China. However, important elements of the management of this global health emergency—and it is an emergency of major international concern—are becoming clearer. As the outbreak accelerates, there are early lessons to be learned. The transmissibility of 2019-nCoV—or at least its geographical distribution—seems to be higher and broader than initially expected. Why? Partly this may be because of China's rapid expansion of its transport networks, especially air and high-speed rail. Wuhan is a crucial hub: linking west to Chengdu, south to Guangzhou and Shenzhen, east to Nanjing and Shanghai, and north to Beijing. With much of December a period when the outbreak went unreported and unrecognised, the population exposed to the virus is far

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