Emergence of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS)

MERS-CoV Nice summary post from PLOS Pathogens explaining where we’re at with MERS:

It began routinely enough. A patient with severe respiratory disease at the Dr. Soliman Fakeeh Hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia was getting worse and no one knew why. A sample of sputum was sent to Dr. Ali Mohamed Zaki to identify the culprit, as he had identified these diseases many times before. However, this time would be different. The sample showed no positive hits on any of the virus assays he normally used. He contacted Dr. Ron Fouchier, at Erasmus Medical College in Rotterdam, Netherlands, to see if he could be of help. Dr. Zaki’s initial idea was that the virus was a paramyxovirus, and Dr Fouchier had recently published a Pan-paramyxovirus polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay. In Dr. Fouchier’s lab, the virus was identified as a novel coronavirus, one that had never been seen before…

Emergence of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus. (2013) PLoS Pathog 9(9): e1003595. doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1003595


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