|"(...) The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) was first identified in Wuhan, China, in December 2019 among a
cluster of patients that presented with an unidentified form of viral pneumonia with shared history of visiting
the Huanan seafood market. Patients were assessed for viral pneumonia through the ascertainment and
testing of bronchoalveolarlavage fluid utilizing whole genome sequencing, cell cultures and polymerase chain
reaction (PCR). The virus was isolated from biologic samples and identified as genus betacoronavirus, placing
it alongside other Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).
At the time of writing, the number of persons infected by the virus has now surpassed 67 091 and Chinese
authorities have reported 1527 deaths from the virus, most in Hubei, the provincial epicenter of the
outbreak.2 Over 25 countries have confirmed cases to date, including countries from Asia, Europe,
North America and the Middle East (see Figure 1). The virus spread internationally within 1 month of the first
identification, and can be transmitted via close human-tohuman contact.3 The World Health Organization
(WHO) declared COVID-19 a Public Health Emergency of International Concern as of 1 February 2020. (...)"
[Coronavirus, epidemiology, epidemic, outbreak, MERS, SARS, nCoV, COVID-19]