Viewpoint: Patient identified with illness similar to SARS

September 27, 2012

A new respiratory illness, similar to SARS, has been identified in a man who is being treated in the UK.

The condition is caused by a , a large family of viruses that includes some causes of the common cold and SARS.  The , which has similar genetic properties to SARS, causes respiratory infection, and is the first of its kind to be identified in the UK.

Dr Jonathan Read, from the National Centre for Zoonosis Research at the University of Liverpool, said: "Until further investigation is carried out, it is too early to say whether those people who have been confirmed to have this virus caught it from an animal or another person. It is very difficult to determine how a new infection transmits between people until a sizable number of cases are identified and investigated, and the information is considered together.

"It may be that this virus is not very new.  Since the emergence of SARS in 2002/03, several more novel coronaviruses have been found in humans, but none have gone on to cause outbreaks.  A lot of the cases of SARS were actually caring for patients, and this is why the has issued guidelines for the monitoring of the contacts and carers of the patients in the UK. 

"SARS was controllable because the symptoms were recognised early in those patients infected with the disease, before they could infect too many people. If the new virus can spread between people, and if it is similar to SARS in the way that symptoms are apparent, then even though there is no vaccine we stand every chance of controlling an outbreak."

Explore further: Qatari with mystery virus still in critical condition: WHO

Related Stories

Qatari with mystery virus still in critical condition: WHO

September 25, 2012
A Qatari man suffering from a new respiratory virus from the same family as the deadly SARS remains in critical condition, the World Health Organisation said Tuesday.

Qatari with SARS-like virus on artificial lung: UK hospital

September 25, 2012
A Qatari man suffering from a mystery respiratory virus from the same family as the deadly disease SARS is on an artificial lung to keep him alive, a British hospital said Tuesday.

WHO urges docs to watch for new SARS-like virus

September 27, 2012
(AP)—Global health officials have alerted doctors to be on the lookout for a virus related to SARS but said there were no signs the disease was behaving like the respiratory syndrome that killed hundreds in 2003.

Five isolated in Danish hospital for SARS-like symptoms

September 26, 2012
Five people have been isolated in a hospital in Denmark with symptoms of a new viral respiratory illness from the same family as the deadly SARS virus, the hospital said on Wednesday.

Patients in Denmark not suffering from new virus: hospital

September 26, 2012
Five people in isolation in a Danish hospital are suffering from a typical influenza strain and not a new SARS-like respiratory illness as feared, the Odense University Hospital said Wednesday.

Double attack on SARS

August 28, 2012
After the SARS-CoV (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus) outbreak in 2003, academia experts in immunology and molecular biology joined forces with industrial vaccine production experts in order to develop preventive ...

Recommended for you

Co-infection with two common gut pathogens worsens malnutrition in mice

July 27, 2017
Two gut pathogens commonly found in malnourished children combine to worsen malnutrition and impair growth in laboratory mice, according to new research published in PLOS Pathogens.

Finish your antibiotics course? Maybe not, experts say

July 27, 2017
British disease experts on Thursday suggested doing away with the "incorrect" advice to always finish a course of antibiotics, saying the approach was fuelling the spread of drug resistance.

Phase 3 trial confirms superiority of tocilizumab to steroids for giant cell arteritis

July 26, 2017
A phase 3 clinical trial has confirmed that regular treatment with tocilizumab, an inhibitor of interleukin-6, successfully reduced both symptoms of and the need for high-dose steroid treatment for giant cell arteritis, the ...

A large-scale 'germ trap' solution for hospitals

July 26, 2017
When an infectious airborne illness strikes, some hospitals use negative pressure rooms to isolate and treat patients. These rooms use ventilation controls to keep germ-filled air contained rather than letting it circulate ...

Researchers report new system to study chronic hepatitis B

July 25, 2017
Scientists from Princeton University's Department of Molecular Biology have successfully tested a cell-culture system that will allow researchers to perform laboratory-based studies of long-term hepatitis B virus (HBV) infections. ...

Male hepatitis B patients suffer worse liver ailments, regardless of lifestyle

July 25, 2017
Why men with hepatitis B remain more than twice as likely to develop severe liver disease than women remains a mystery, even after a study led by a recent Drexel University graduate took lifestyle choices and environments ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.