MERS virus claims two more lives in Saudi Arabia

September 6, 2013

Two women have died of the coronavirus MERS in Saudi Arabia, the health ministry said on Friday, bringing the total number of fatalities in the kingdom to 44.

The victims were identified as a 41-year-old expat who was working in the health sector in Riyadh and a 79-year-old Saudi who suffered from chronic illnesses and who came into contact with a patient stricken by the virus in the northeastern city of Hafr al-Baten.

Saudi Arabia is the country worst hit by MERS, which has killed 50 people globally, according to a statement published by the World Health Organisation on August 30.

Experts are struggling to understand MERS—Middle East Respiratory Syndrome—for which there is still no vaccine and which has an extremely high of more than 51 percent.

It is considered a cousin of the SARS virus that erupted in Asia in 2003 and infected 8,273 people, nine percent of whom died.

Like SARS, MERS is thought to have jumped from animals to humans, and it shares the former's flu-like symptoms—but differs by also causing kidney failure.

According to research published this month in the American health journal Emerging Infectious Diseases, MERS was transmitted to humans from bats. But a study in the Lancet found the virus could have come from camels.

Explore further: Two deaths, six new MERS virus cases in Saudi: WHO

Related Stories

Two deaths, six new MERS virus cases in Saudi: WHO

August 28, 2013
Eight new cases of the deadly coronavirus MERS, a SARS-like infection, have been registered in Saudi Arabia, the World Health Organisation said on Wednesday.

Saudi man dies of MERS virus

August 28, 2013
A Saudi man has died of the coronavirus MERS, bringing the kingdom's death toll from the SARS-like virus to 42, health authorities said Wednesday, adding a new case was registered.

Saudi man dies of MERS virus: ministry

August 25, 2013
A Saudi man has died of the coronavirus MERS, bringing the kingdom's death toll from the SARS-like virus to 41, while two new cases were registered, the government said Sunday.

Saudi man dies of MERS virus: ministry

July 28, 2013
A Saudi man has died of the coronavirus MERS and another has contracted the virus, the health ministry said on Saturday, bringing the kingdom's deaths from the virus to 39.

Qatar announces its first MERS death

September 4, 2013
A woman has died in Qatar after contracting the MERS coronavirus, becoming the first recorded fatality from the SARS-like virus in the Gulf state, local press reported on Wednesday.

Three new cases of MERS virus confirmed in Saudi: WHO

August 1, 2013
Three women have contracted the deadly MERS virus in Saudi Arabia, which has been hardest hit by the enigmatic disease, the World Health Organisation said Thursday.

Recommended for you

Anti-malaria drug shows promise as Zika virus treatment

November 17, 2017
A new collaborative study led by researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) and UC San Diego School of Medicine has found that a medication used to prevent and treat malaria may also be effective ...

Scientists identify biomarkers that indicate likelihood of survival in infected patients

November 17, 2017
Scientists have identified a set of biomarkers that indicate which patients infected with the Ebola virus are most at risk of dying from the disease.

Research team unlocks secrets of Ebola

November 16, 2017
In a comprehensive and complex molecular study of blood samples from Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, published today (Nov. 16, 2017) in Cell Host and Microbe, a scientific team led by the University of Wisconsin-Madison has ...

Study raises possibility of naturally acquired immunity against Zika virus

November 16, 2017
Birth defects in babies born infected with Zika virus remain a major health concern. Now, scientists suggest the possibility that some women in high-risk Zika regions may already be protected and not know it.

A structural clue to attacking malaria's 'Achilles heel'

November 16, 2017
Researchers from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) and PATH's Malaria Vaccine Initiative (MVI) have shed light on how the human immune system recognizes the malaria parasite though investigation of antibodies generated ...

Molecular pathway offers treatment targets for pulmonary fibrosis, related conditions

November 15, 2017
A study led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto has identified a molecular pathway that appears to be critical to the development of fibrosis - scarring ...

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.