Mapping the Coronavirus outbreak


Countries around the world are pacing to challenge a novel family of viruses known as coronavirus that initiated in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, for over a month. As per the World Health Organization, coronaviruses are a group of viruses that are responsible for infection extending from the common cold to diseases like SARS or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome and the Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). SARS was supposed to have been communicated from civet cats to humans whereas MERS transferred from a kind of camel to humans. When examined under an electron microscope, Coronaviruses look like spiked rings

What is Coronavirus?

Coronaviruses belong to a family known as Coronaviridae. The genetic material of the virus contains a single strand of RNA within an envelope.  The spikes on the viral envelope help coronaviruses bind to the host cell which provides them a way to interact with the host cell and hack their translational machinery to produce viral proteins. Once they are able to produce the virus factory, using its molecular conveyor girdle to produce more viruses. The virus seems to have originated in Wuhan, a Chinese city that has more than 11 million inhabitants.

What symptoms do they offer?

As per the WHO, symptoms include cough, fever, and breathlessness. In extreme cases, it may also lead to pneumonia, kidney failure, SARS and ultimately death.  The incubation period for this virus is yet to be discovered. Sources say it may be between 1-2 weeks.

Where have cases been reported?

 Coronavirus has already killed 425 people in mainland China. Most of the cases have been reported in the place of origin; China. The virus has a range to Asian countries such as Europe, Australia, North America, and the Middle East. However, the China Global Television Network reported that around 900 patients have recovered which is not only good news for us but also a light of hope of people who are surviving the disease as well as to people who are in fear of getting that.

What steps are being taken to stop it from spreading?

Researchers are working on a vaccine but have advised that it may not be obtainable for mass circulation before 2021. Several airlines have negated flights to China, whereas certain countries have also excluded Chinese nationals from arriving and have emptied their citizens from Wuhan.

Is this a global extremity?

 The WHO declares it as a global health emergency. The international health alert is a call on countries all over the world to synchronize their answer under the supervision of the United Nations health agency.

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