A pneumonia outbreak associated with a new coronavirus of probable bat origin
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Since the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) 18 years ago, a large number of SARS-related coronaviruses (SARSr-CoVs) have been discovered in their natural reservoir host, bats1–4 . Previous studies have shown that some bat SARSr-CoVs have the potential to infect humans5–7 . Here we report the identifcation and characterization of a new coronavirus (2019-nCoV), which caused an epidemic of acute respiratory syndrome in humans in Wuhan, China. The epidemic, which started on 12 December 2019, had caused 2,794 laboratory-confrmed infections including 80 deaths by 26 January 2020. Full-length genome sequences were obtained from fve patients at an early stage of the outbreak. The sequences are almost identical and share 79.6% sequence identity to SARS-CoV. Furthermore, we show that 2019-nCoV is 96% identical at the whole-genome level to a bat coronavirus. Pairwise protein sequence analysis of seven conserved non-structural proteins domains show that this virus belongs to the species of SARSr-CoV. In addition, 2019-nCoV virus isolated from the bronchoalveolar lavage fuid of a critically ill patient could be neutralized by sera from several patients. Notably, we confrmed that 2019-nCoV uses the same cell entry receptor—angiotensin converting enzyme II (ACE2)—as SARS-CoV.
Link to resourcehttps://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-020-2012-7
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