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Related to Coronavirus infections: Corona virus


any of a group (family Coronaviridae, subfamily Orthocoronavirinae) of enveloped single-stranded RNA viruses that have a crownlike or sunlike appearance under an electron microscope due to the presence of spikelike or club-shaped projections on their surface. Coronaviruses infect mammals (including humans) and birds, mainly in the upper respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts. Most only infect a single species or closely related species; a number of coronaviruses can have significant effects on farm animals, especially poultry.

In humans the most prevalent coronaviruses are those that are responsible for varieties of the common coldcold, common,
acute viral infection of the mucous membranes of the nose and throat, often involving the sinuses. The typical sore throat, sneezing, and fatigue may be accompanied by body aches, headache, low fever, and chills.
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; coronaviruses are estimated to cause as many as 30% of all colds. More serious are the coronaviruses responsible for SARSSARS
or severe acute respiratory syndrome,
communicable viral disease that can progress to a potentially fatal pneumonia. The first symptoms of SARS are usually a high fever, headache and body aches, sore throat, and mild respiratory symptoms; diarrhea may occur.
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 (severe acute respiratory syndrome), SARS-CoV; for MERSMERS
or Middle East respiratory syndrome,
relatively rare viral disease caused by MERS-CoV, a coronavirus. Although some infected persons have no or only coldlike symptoms, in most known cases of MERS the infection quickly progresses to serious respiratory illness,
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 (Middle East respiratory syndrome), MERS-CoV; and for COVID-19COVID-19,
contagious viral disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, or SARS-CoV-2, a coronavirus that is genetically related to SARS-CoV, which causes SARS.
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 (coronavirus disease 2019), SARS-CoV-2. Outbreaks caused by infections with these viruses have resulted in signficant deaths, though at varying rates; a lack of immunity in infected persons and of an effective treatment for the diseases, especially in severe cases, has contributed to the deadliness of the outbreaks. In SARS cases, about 9% of those infected died; in MERS cases, roughly 35% have died. The fatality rate of COVID-19, although not yet determined, is significantly less, but the worldwide spread of COVID-19 that began in late 2019 resulted in a far greater number of infections and deaths than in earlier SARS and MERS outbreaks, and attempts to control the disease's spread led to severe economic disruption.

Human coronaviruses appear to spread mainly through droplets in the air resulting from coughing or sneezing, or through close contact with an infected person or a contaminated object or surface. There are no vaccines or treatment for coronaviruses; care consists mainly in alleviating symptoms and preventing the viruses' transmission through handwashing and other measures. The first coronavirus, an infectious bronchitis virus of birds, was identified in the 1930s; the first human coronaviruses, associated with the common cold, were identified in the 1960s.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.


A major group of animal viruses including avian infectious bronchitis virus and mouse hepatitis virus.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


a type of airborne virus accounting for 10-30% of all colds
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
A family cluster of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infections related to a likely unrecognized asymptomatic or mild case.
Novel coronavirus infections in Jordan, April 2012: epidemiological findings from a retrospective investigation.
This insight is critical for a full understanding of any outbreaks caused by such viruses and may prove beneficial in the development of therapies not only for human coronavirus infections but for other pathogenic illnesses as well.
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Noureddine Ben Achour, Director General of the National Observatory of New and Emerging Diseases said 43 cases of Coronavirus infections was reported in the world, including two cases in Tunisia, and 20 deaths.
Dr Abdallah Assaedi, the representative of WHO in Muscat, said there are no recorded cases of novel coronavirus infections in Oman.
Since then, health authorities across the UAE have been coordinating with one another, as well as other organisations in the UAE, to monitor any cases of coronavirus infections, as reported by Gulf News earlier.
More research is needed, but the current study is an important step toward understanding a link between respiratory disease and gastrointestinal disease in coronavirus infections, he said.
McIntosh pointed out some "tantalizing facts": onset of Kawasaki disease is often preceded by a respiratory syndrome; both the disease and respiratory coronavirus infections are seasonal, peaking in the winter and spring; recent studies have described a powerful immune response in the respiratory tract and other organs in acute cases of Kawasaki disease, suggesting the involvement of a specific microbe that may enter the body through the respiratory tract; and finally, as the emergence of SARS illustrates, coronaviruses "are capable of enormously varied pathogenicity." Despite these encouraging preliminary observations, Dr.
Several animal coronaviruses have been known to cause serious disease including avian infectious bronchitis virus of chickens and coronavirus infections of rats (Brooks and others 2001).
Although no additional coronavirus infections have been documented among other U.S.