Coronavirus Free Access Resource Center
Corona Specific Protocols
General Virus Protocols
Additional Related Resources
Current Status and Research
It is unknown whether a pregnant woman infected by the “SARS-CoV-2” virus can pass it to her fetus, called “vertical transmission.” However, infants born to mothers affected by COVID-19 have displayed adverse health outcomes such as respiratory distress. The scientists are still not sure whether these adverse outcomes are related or not to the COVID-19 infection in their mothers.
Metagenomic RNA sequencing was used to first identify the coronavirus in a sample from a patient who had worked at the Wuhan food market. A draft genome sequence was made publicly available in the GenBank sequence repository on January 10th (last updated on January 17th).
A rapid-response team from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention isolated and cultivated the coronavirus from bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of three patients and identified it as the probable source of the outbreak
Microscopic techniques such as Correlative Light Electron Microscopy (CLEM), TEM or Negative Stain Electron Microscopy can be used to identify the morphology of coronavirus. Additionally, techniques such as Live Imaging using a Luciferase-fluorescent Reporter can be used to quantify the viral particles
Further genome sequencing revealed that the virus shared over 85% sequence identity with a known SARS-like coronavirus found in bats. The sequences were deposited in an open access database - Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID)
A group of scientists based in Wuhan and Beijing demonstrated that the virus uses angiotensin-converting enzyme II (ACE2) to gain entry to host cells (as did SARS-CoV)
Several international groups have been working from the open access sequence data to design primers for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for diagnostics tests of SARS-CoV-2 (formerly 2019-nCoV)
Christian Drosten’s Lab at the Institute of Virology, Charité University Hospital, Berlin (with collaborators from Europe and Hong Kong) published a real-time PCR (RT-PCR) diagnostic test and workflow which detects SARS-CoV-2 and distinguishes it from SARS-CoV
A research group at Hong Kong University developed two one-step quantitative RT-PCR tests targeting both the open reading frame 1b (ORF1b) and the N regions of the viral genome. The N gene assay is recommended as a screening test and the ORF1b test is recommended as a confirmation test. (Reference: academic.oup.com/5719336)
Current Diagnosis Methods
Early virological detection is important, mainly using sputum RT-PCR, which has the highest true positivity rate in patients (fecal RT-PCR has 50% positivity rate, and blood RT-PCR a 10% positivity rate)
Dynamic monitoring of inflammatory indexes
New or other under diagnostic
Treatment and prevention
Lopinavir/ritonavir combined with abidol. Useful for determining effectiveness of new treatment options.
Alternative treatment methods