News Coronavirus The new coronavirus: What is it and how does it behave?

The new coronavirus: What is it and how does it behave?

The new coronavirus that emerged in Wuhan, China, in December has infected tens of thousands of people in China and beyond and triggered alarm around the world. Here is what we know about the disease it causes and how it spreads:

  • Like other coronaviruses, the new virus – which causes a disease now called COVID-19 – is transmitted from person to person via droplets when an infected person breathes out, coughs or sneezes. It can also spread via contaminated surfaces such as door handles or railings.
  • Scientists in China who studied swabs from infected patients say the new coronavirus behaves quite like flu viruses, suggesting it may spread more easily than previously thought.
  • COVID-19 infection has an incubation period of between one and 14 days, and a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association has found new evidence that the virus can be spread asymptomatically.
  • A World Health Organization-led team of investigating scientists in China has said that the epidemic there peaked between Jan. 23 and Feb. 2 and has been declining steadily since then.
  • They also found that the case-fatality rate is between 2% and 4% in Wuhan and 0.7% outside Wuhan.
  • Infectious disease and virus specialists estimate that each infected person in the epidemic is infecting, on average, two to three other people.
  • The WHO said on Monday that the COVID-19 outbreak was not out of control globally and does not have a large-scale death toll, so it was “too early” to speak of a pandemic.
  • Coronavirus infections have a wide range of symptoms, including fever, coughing, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Mild cases can cause cold-like symptoms, while severe cases can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory illness, kidney failure and death.
  • Coronaviruses are a family of viruses that get their name from what they look like under a microscope – they are spherical and their surfaces are covered with “crown”-like spikes.
  • Animal viruses can mutate or combine with other viruses to create new strains capable of being passed to people. Scientists say the new coronavirus originated in bats and then passed to humans, possibly via an intermediary animal species.
  • Genetic data suggests the new coronavirus is the result of viral recombination – a process where more than one virus infects the same cell at the same time and creates a “recombinant” virus strain.

Top Stories

Chinese medical supplies to arrive in Cyprus on Aegean flight

Aegean has offered free transport of much needed medical supplies from China, to speed up the process and strengthen Cyprus' fight against the coronavirus. According...

How to pay a restriction violation fine

Fines for violations of the restriction decrees, enforced on March 24, are payable as follows: Any commercial bank connected to the payment provider or providers...

What we don’t yet know about the coronavirus

It has been only three months since reports first emerged from China of an unknown virus causing unusual cases of pneumonia, and scientists and...

Coronavirus patient critical at Limassol hospital

A coronavirus patient at Limassol hospital is reported to be in critical condition and has been placed on a respirator. According to the State Health...

24 coronavirus patients at the Famagusta reference hospital

Nine more coronavirus patients have been admitted to the Famagusta hospital, the reference institution for confirmed cases, raising the number to 24. According to CNA...

Taste

Village salad

A must-have with every meal is a village salad. You will find it in every tavern or greek restaurant you visit in Cyprus. Make...

Courgettes with eggs

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the courgettes at a medium heat until they soften. Add salt and add the eggs....

Classic Pastitsio

Prepare the mince sauce: heat the butter in a pan and sauté the mince with the onion and garlic until nicely browned, mixing well....

Grilled vegetable and goat cheese rolls

Brush the vegetables with olive oil and season. Heat a pan/griddle and cook them carefully until golden on both sides, making sure their shape...