MERS-CoV Update



More deaths from virus reported in UAE and KSA, first case in Yemen

At the time of going to press WHO reported (26 April 2014) that the ministries of health of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) recently announced additional laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).

Globally, from September 2012 to date, WHO has been informed of a total of 261 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with MERS-CoV, including 93 deaths.

CIDRAP – www.cidrap.umn.edu – notes that among the 27 cases listed by Flu- Trackers for the outbreak in Jeddah, KSA, at least 13 work in the health sector.

Meanwhile, a Yemeni man who works as an aeronautics engineer has contracted MERS-CoV according to a Reuters report from Sanaa (April 13). This is the country’s first recorded case of MERS-CoV. The National reports April 14 that one Filipino paramedic has died (April 10) and 5 other Filipino health workers were quarantined with MERS-CoV in the UAE. The four paramedics, two men and two women, were in Al Ain Hospital and the nurse, a man from Abu Dhabi, was being treated at Mafraq Hospital.

MERS-CoV Research Update

CIDRAP reports on recent research by US and Saudi scientists published online 29 April in mBio - doi: 10.1128/ mBio.01146-14. The report notes that MERS-CoV isolates from camels in Saudi Arabia match MERS-CoV samples from humans and can be grown in nonhuman primate cells in a lab, further augmenting the evidence that camels are a source of human infections. The team generated complete genetic sequences for MERS-CoV isolates from five camels and determined that they were identical to published sequences of human isolates, according to their report in mBio. In addition, they succeeded in culturing viruses from two of the camels in Vero (African green monkey) cells in their lab.

They also found that viral particles from individual camels contained more genetic variation than is true of MERSCoV isolates from humans, which suggests that, if camels are passing the virus to humans, only certain genotypes can infect humans. That may partially explain why human MERS cases are uncommon, they say. CIDRAP’s full report can be read here:
http://tinyurl.com/no98msg


The UAE provided the following details to WHO on 24 April 2014:

- A 45 year-old woman from Abu Dhabi who is a daughter of a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 22 April. She became ill on 15 April. She is reported to have an underlying medical condition, and has no history of recent travel or contact with animals.

- A 4 year-old boy from Abu Dhabi. He developed mild illness on 19 April. He is reported to have no underlying medical condition, and does not have a history of recent travel or contact with animals. His mother returned from a visit to Saudi Arabia 10 days prior to his illness.

- A 37 year-old man from Abu Dhabi who was screened following exposure to a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 10 April. He is reported to have underlying medical conditions. He has no history of recent travel, but frequently visits the two farms he owns.

- A 32 year-old man from Abu Dhabi who was screened, following exposure to a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 10 April. He did not become ill and does not have any underlying medical condition. He has no history of recent travel and did not have contact with animals.

- A 33 year-old man from Abu Dhabi who was screened following exposure to a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 10 April. He did not become ill and is reported to have no underlying medical condition. He has no history of recent travel. He owns two farms and is reported to have contact with camels.

- A 30 year-old man from Abu Dhabi. He was screened following exposure with a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 10 April. He does not have any underlying medical condition. He has no history of recent travel and did not have contact with animals.

- A 42 year-old man from Abu Dhabi. He was screened following exposure to a previously laboratory-confirmed case reported on 10 April. He had mild illness. He is reported to have no underlying medical condition. He has no history of recent travel and had no contact with animals. At the time of going to press all the above mentioned cases were reported to be in isolation in a hospital and were well. Screening of other contacts within the health care setting and families were ongoing.

 Date of upload: 12th May 2014

 

                                  
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