By Daniel Eisenman, PhD, RBP, SM(NRCM), CBSP, Director of Biosafety Services
The recent outbreak of the novel 2019 coronavirus (2019-nCov) in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, has led to a surge of interest in coronavirus research and concern about the risks associated with coronaviruses. In this blog we’ll introduce coronaviruses and cover strategies for developing medical countermeasures to combat the recent outbreak. We’ll also review opportunities, risks, and risk mitigation strategies for coronavirus research.
Coronavirus (CoV) is a family of viruses that cause disease in mammals and birds. Most coronaviruses capable of infecting humans cause mild to moderate respiratory tract infections which are transmitted by respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Certain notable coronavirus species can cause more virulent infections, including SARS, MERS, and 2019-nCov.