Is Canada at risk from a mysterious Chinese virus related to SARS?
2020-01-11 from cbc.ca
This is an excerpt from Second Opinion, a weekly roundup of eclectic and under-the-radar health and medical science news emailed to subscribers every Saturday morning. If you haven't subscribed yet, you can do that by clicking here.
For Canadians who remember the face masks, quarantines and airport screenings of the SARS epidemic, a mysterious outbreak of pneumonia in China likely caused by the same family of viruses may be raising concern.
Since Dec. 12, 59 people have been hospitalized with viral pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in the central Chinese province of Hubei. Wuhan health officials on Saturday reported that one person has died, and seven were in critical condition.
Health officials in China have reportedly identified and genetically sequenced the previously unknown virus from an infected patient in Wuhan and found remnants of it in 15 others, state-run media agency Xinhua announced Thursday.
The illness has been identified as a new coronavirus, a large family of viruses that can make the jump from animals to humans and range from the common cold to much more serious illnesses, such as SARS or MERS.
Chinese officials have traced the outbreak back to a seafood market in Wuhan, which was shut down and disinfected on Dec. 31. But it's not yet known how it made a species jump from animals to humans, or if it is transmissible from person to person.
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