REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0343.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: coronavirus; 2019-nCoV; SARS-CoV-2; animal coronaviruses; COVID-19; bat coronavirus; zoonoses; epidemiology; transmission; diagnosis; antivirals; prevention and control
Online: 23 March 2020 (07:19:35 CET)
After the appearance of first cases of ‘pneumonia of unknown origin’ in the Wuhan city, China, during late 2019, the disease progressed fast. Its cause was identified as a novel coronavirus, named provisionally 2019-nCoV. Subsequently, an official name was given as SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2) by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV) study group. The World Health Organization (WHO) named the Coronavirus disease-2019 as COVID-19. The epidemics of COVID-2019 have been recorded over 113 countries/territories/areas apart from China and filched more than 4292 humans, affecting severely around 1,18,326 cases in a short span. The status of COVID-2019 emergency revised by the WHO within 42 days from Public Health International Emergency (January 30, 2020) to a pandemic (March 11, 2020). Nonetheless, the case fatality rate (CFR) of the current epidemic is on the rise (between 2-4%), relatively is lower than the previous SARS-CoV (2002/2003) and MERS-CoV (2012) outbreaks. Even though investigations are on its way, the researchers across the globe have assumptions of animal-origin of current SARS-CoV-2. A recent case report provides evidence of mild COVID-2019 infection in a pet dog that acquired COVID-2019 infection from his owner in Hong Kong. The news on travellers associated spread across the globe have also put many countries on alert with the cancellation of tourist visa to all affected countries and postponement of events where international visits were required. A few diagnostic approaches, including quantitative and differential real-time polymerase chain reaction assays, have been recommended for the screening of the individuals at risk. In the absence of any selective vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, re-purposed drugs are advocated in many studies. This article discourse the current worldwide situation of COVID-2019 with information on virus, epidemiology, host, the role of animals, effective diagnosis, therapeutics, preventive and control approaches making people aware on the disease outcomes.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0001.v2
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: emerging coronavirus; 2019-nCoV; SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; diagnosis; vaccines; therapy; one health
Online: 13 April 2020 (02:29:00 CEST)
In the past decades, several new diseases have emerged in new geographical areas, with pathogens including Ebola, Zika, Nipah, and coronaviruses (CoVs). Recently, a new type of viral infection has emerged in Wuhan City, China, and initial genomic sequencing data of this virus does not match with previously sequenced CoVs, suggesting a novel CoV strain (2019-nCoV), which has now been termed as severe acute respiratory syndrome CoV-2 (SARS-CoV-2). Although Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is suspected to originate from an animal host (zoonotic origin) followed by human-to-human transmission, the possibility of other routes such as food-borne transmission should not be ruled out. Compared to diseases caused by previously known human CoVs, COVID-19 shows less severe pathogenesis but higher transmission competence, as is evident from the continuously increasing number of confirmed cases globally. Compared to other emerging viruses such as Ebola virus, avian H7N9, SARS-CoV, or MERS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2 has shown relatively low pathogenicity and moderate transmissibility. Codon usage studies suggest that this novel virus may have been transferred from an animal source such as bats. Early diagnosis by real-time PCR and next-generation sequencing has facilitated the identification of the pathogen at an early stage. Since, no antiviral drug or vaccine exists to treat or prevent SARS-CoV-2, potential therapeutic strategies that are currently being evaluated predominantly stem from previous experience with treating SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, and other emerging viral diseases. In this review, we address epidemiological, diagnostic, clinical, and therapeutic aspects, including perspectives of vaccines and preventive measures that have already been globally recommended.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0348.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: SARS-COV-2; COVID-19; clinical pathology; pathogenesis; immunopathology
Online: 23 March 2020 (07:51:17 CET)
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by a novel coronavirus named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome - Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), emerged in early December 2019 in China and attained a pandemic situation worldwide by its rapid spread to nearly 167 countries with 287.239 confirmed cases and 11.921 human deaths with a case fatality rate (CFR) of around 4 per cent. Bats were considered as the reservoir host, and the search of a probable intermediate host is still going on. Animals have anticipated culprit of SARS-CoV-2 as of now. The disease is mainly manifested by pneumonia and related respiratory signs and symptoms, but the involvement of the gastrointestinal system and nervous system is also suggested. The severe form of the disease associated with death is mainly reported in older and immune-compromised patients with pre-existing disease history. Death in severe cases is attributed to respiratory failure associated with hyperinflammation. Cytokine storm syndrome associated with rampant inflammation in response to SARS-CoV-2 infection is considered as the leading killer of COVID-19 patients. COVID-19 patients were reported with higher levels of many pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines like IFN-g, IL-1b, IP-10, and MCP-1. Furthermore, severe cases of COVID-19 revealed higher levels of TNF-α, G-CSF, and MIP-1A. Blood profile of the COVID-19 patients exhibits lymphopenia, leucopenia, thrombocytopenia and RNAaemia along with increased levels of aspartate aminotransferase. SARS-CoV-2 infection in pregnant women does not lead to fetus mortalities unlike other zoonotic coronaviruses like SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, with no evidence of intrauterine transmission to neonates. Rapid and confirmatory diagnostics have been developed, and high efforts are being made to develop effective vaccines and therapeutics. In the absence of any virus-specific therapeutic, internationally health care authorities are recommending adoption of effective prevention and control measures to counter and contain this pandemic virus. This paper is an overview of this virus and the disease with a particular focus on SARS-COV-2 / COVID-19 clinical pathology, pathogenesis and immunopathology along with a few recent research developments.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0518.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Langya virus; henipavirus; animal spillover; zoonosis; public health concerns; prevention and control measures
Online: 28 January 2023 (04:53:17 CET)
The risk of 'zoonotic spillovers,' or the transmission of viruses from animals to humans, has been raised by climate change and the devastation of nature, as infectious disease experts have long warned. Even as the world works to stop the spread of the currently unfolding pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and the breakout of monkeypox virus (MPXV), a new animal virus, the Langya henipavirus (LayV), has been discovered in humans in Eastern China. The scientists say there is little danger of the virus spreading among humans, but it shares genetic material with Hendra virus and Nipah virus, two other henipaviruses that infect humans and cause life-threatening respiratory diseases. Humans infected with LayV can expect to experience high body temperature, cough, weariness, poor appetite, muscle discomfort, myalgia, nausea and vomiting. It is likely that the virus will spread from animals to humans. Currently, the health authorities of Taiwan and other health organizations are tracking the progress of the ailment to ensure it does not reach humans. Researchers have examined 25 species of small wild animals for presence of the virus, and so far, shrews are the only ones that have tested positive for the virus's RNA. Based on these results, shrews are a possible candidate for the virus's natural reservoir. Too far, no therapies or vaccines have been developed and licensed for henipaviruses like the LayV. When other therapies fail to alleviate viral infections, ribavirin may be the next best thing. The need for novel vaccinations against the LayV infection and the timely delivery of these vaccines to areas at high epidemiological risk is real. To lessen the likelihood of a health calamity being caused by this newly developing virus, it is crucial to conduct active surveillance in a transparent and globally collaborative manner. The questions that have not been answered yet require additional study.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0103.v2
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: Coronavirus; SARS-CoV; MERS-CoV; serology; molecular diagnosis; reservoir; public health
Online: 19 May 2020 (04:13:19 CEST)
Introduction: Coronaviruses are zoonotic viruses that include human epidemic pathogens such as the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome virus (MERS-CoV), and the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome virus (SARS-CoV), among others (e.g., COVID-19, the recently emerging coronavirus disease). The role of animals as potential reservoirs for such pathogens remains an unanswered question. No systematic reviews have been published on this topic to date. Methods: We performed a systematic literature review with meta-analysis, using three databases to assess MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV infection in animals and its diagnosis by serological and molecular tests. We performed a random-effects model meta-analysis to calculate the pooled prevalence and 95% confidence interval (95%CI). Results: 6,493articles were retrieved (1960-2019). After screening by abstract/title, 50 articles were selected for full-text assessment. Of them, 42 were finally included for qualitative and quantitative analyses. From a total of 34 studies (n=20,896 animals), the pool prevalence by RT-PCR for MERS-CoV was 7.2% (95%CI 5.6-8.7%), with 97.3% occurring in camels, in which pool prevalence was 10.3% (95%CI 8.3-12.3). Qatar was the country with the highest MERS-CoV RT-PCR pool prevalence, 32.6% (95%CI 4.8-60.4%). From 5 studies and 2,618 animals, for SARS-CoV, the RT-PCR pool prevalence was 2.3% (95%CI 1.3-3.3). Of those, 38.35% were reported on bats, in which the pool prevalence was 14.1% (95%CI0.0-44.6%). Discussion: A considerable proportion of infected animals tested positive, particularly by nucleic acid amplification tests (NAAT). This essential condition highlights the relevance of individual animals as reservoirs of MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV. In this meta-analysis, camels and bats were found to be positive by RT-PCR in over 10% of the cases for both; thus, suggesting their relevance in the maintenance of wild zoonotic transmission.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0075.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; COVID-19; immunotherapeutics; therapeutics; vaccines
Online: 7 April 2020 (02:01:34 CEST)
A novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), causing an emerging coronavirus disease (COVID-19), first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China has resulted in an outbreak in China which has taken a catastrophic turn with high toll rates in China and subsequently spreading across the globe. The rapid spread of this virus to more than 175 countries while affecting nearly 500,000 persons and causing more than 22,000 human deaths, it has resulted in a pandemic situation in the world. The SARS-CoV-2 virus belongs to the genus Betacoronavirus, like MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, all of which originated in bats. It is highly contagious, causing symptoms like fever, dyspnea, asthenia and pneumonia, thrombocytopenia and the severely infected patients succumb to the disease. Coronaviruses (CoVs) among all known RNA viruses have the largest genomes ranging from 26 to 32 kb in length. Extensive research has been conducted to understand the molecular basis of the SARS-CoV-2 infection and evolution, develop effective therapeutics, antiviral drugs and vaccines, and to design rapid and confirmatory viral diagnostics as well as adopt appropriate prevention and control strategies. Till date, no clinically proclaimed, proven therapeutic antibodies or specific drugs and therapeutics, and vaccines have turned up. Several molecular diagnostic tests such as Real Time-PCR, isothermal loop-mediated amplification of coronavirus (i-LACO), full genome analysis by next-generation sequencing (NGS), multiplex nucleic acid amplification, and microarray-based assays are in use currently for the laboratory confirmation of this CoV infection. In this review article, we describe the basic molecular organization and phylogenetic analysis of the coronaviruses, including the SARS-CoV-2, and recent advances in diagnosis and vaccine development in brief and focusing mainly on developing potential therapeutic options that can be explored to manage this pandemic virus infection, which would help in valid countering of COVID-19.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0011.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-Cov-2; bat coronavirus; zoonosis; spillover; expanding host range
Online: 2 April 2020 (04:43:45 CEST)
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome - Coronavirus-2) of the family Coronaviridae, appeared in Wuhan, Hubei province, China being its epicenter in December 2019. This disease was declared as posing Public Health International Emergency by World Health Organization on January 30, 2020, attained the status of a very high-risk category on February 29, and now having a pandemic status (March 11, 2020). COVID-19 has presently spread to more than 195 countries/territories while killing nearly 19,600 humans out of cumulative confirmed cases accounting to more than 430,000 within a short period of just a few weeks. The majority of deaths have been reported in Italy and China. Researchers worldwide are pacing with high efforts to counter the spread of this virus and to design effective vaccines and therapeutics/drugs. Few of the studies have shown the potential of animal-human interface and zoonotic links in the origin of SARS-CoV-2. Exploring the possible zoonosis and revealing the factors responsible for its initial transmission from animals to humans will pave ways to design and implement effective preventive and control strategies to counter COVID-19. The present review presents an overview of COVID-19 and the causative virus SARS-CoV-2, with particular emphasis on the role of animals and their jumping the cross-species barriers, experiences learned from SARS- and MERS-CoVs, zoonotic links, and spillover events, transmission to humans and rapid spread., highlighting in very brief the preventive and control measures along with a few of the recent research developments to counter this pandemic virus/disease.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0469.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2; COVID-2019; epidemiology; pathobiology; clinical profile; phyloanalysis; artificial intelligence; diagnosis; vaccines; therapeutics
Online: 26 April 2020 (08:15:23 CEST)
The technology-driven world of the 21st century is currently confronted with a major threat to humankind in the form of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). As of April 22, 2020, COVID-19 has claimed 169, 006 human lives and had spread to over 200 countries with more than 2,471,136 confirmed cases. The perpetually increasing figures associated with COVID-19 are disrupting the social and economic systems globally. The losses are unmatched and significantly higher compared to those from previously encountered pathogenic infections. Previously, two CoVs (SARS-CoV and Middle East respiratory syndrome-CoV) affected the human population in 2002 and 2012 in China and Saudi Arabia, respectively. Based on genomic similarities, animal-origin CoVs, primarily those infecting bats, civet cats, and pangolins, were presumed to be the source of emerging human CoVs, including the SARS-CoV-2. The cohesive approach amongst virologists, bioinformaticians, big data analysts, epidemiologists, and public health researchers across the globe has delivered high-end viral diagnostics. Similarly, vaccines and therapeutics against COVID-19 are currently in the pipeline for clinical trials. The rapidly evolving and popular technology of artificial intelligence played a major role in confirming and countering the COVID-19 pandemic using digital technologies and mathematical algorithms. In this review, we discuss the noteworthy advancements in the mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing on the etiological viral agent, comparative genomic analysis, population susceptibility, disease epidemiology, animal reservoirs, laboratory animal models, disease transmission, diagnosis using artificial intelligence interventions, therapeutics and vaccines, and disease mitigation measures to combat disease dissemination.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0378.v3
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: Coronavirus Disease 2019; SARS-CoV-2; clinical features; laboratory; outcomes; epidemic.
Online: 11 March 2020 (10:35:01 CET)
Introduction: An epidemic of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) begun in December 2019 in China, causing a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. Among raised questions, clinical, laboratory, and imaging features have been partially characterized in some observational studies. No systematic reviews have been published on this matter. Methods: We performed a systematic literature review with meta-analysis, using three databases to assess clinical, laboratory, imaging features, and outcomes of COVID-19 confirmed cases. Observational studies, and also case reports, were included and analyzed separately. We performed a random-effects model meta-analysis to calculate the pooled prevalence and 95% confidence interval (95%CI). Results: 660 articles were retrieved (1/1/2020-2/23/2020). After screening by abstract/title, 27 articles were selected for full-text assessment. Of them, 19 were finally included for qualitative and quantitative analyses. Additionally, 39 case report articles were included and analyzed separately. For 656 patients, fever (88.7%, 95%CI 84.5-92.9%), cough (57.6%, 40.8-74.4%) and dyspnea (45.6%, 10.9-80.4%) were the most prevalent manifestations. Among the patients, 20.3% (95%CI 10.0-30.6%) required intensive care unit (ICU), with 32.8% presenting acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) (95%CI 13.7-51.8), 6.2% (95%CI 3.1-9.3) with shock and 13.9% (95%CI 6.2-21.5%) of hospitalized patients with fatal outcomes (case fatality rate, CFR).Conclusion: COVID-19 brings a huge burden to healthcare facilities, especially in patients with comorbidities. ICU was required for approximately 20% of polymorbid, COVID-19 infected patients and this group was associated with a CFR of over 13%. As this virus spreads globally, countries need to urgently prepare human resources, infrastructure, and facilities to treat severe COVID-19.