A Familial Cluster of Infection Associated With the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Indicating Possible Person-to-Person Transmission During the Incubation Period

J Infect Dis. 2020 May 11;221(11):1757-1761. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiaa077.


An ongoing outbreak of pneumonia associated with 2019 novel coronavirus was reported in China. It is unclear whether the virus is infective exists during the incubation period, although person-to-person transmission has been reported elsewhere. We report the epidemiological features of a familial cluster of 4 patients in Shanghai, including an 88-year-old man with limited mobility who was exposed only to asymptomatic family members whose symptoms developed later. The epidemiological evidence has shown possible transmission of 2019 novel coronavirus during the incubation period.

Keywords: 2019-nCoV; family cluster; incubation period; infectivity.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Betacoronavirus / isolation & purification
  • COVID-19
  • China / epidemiology
  • Coronavirus Infections / diagnosis
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Coronavirus Infections / therapy
  • Coronavirus Infections / transmission*
  • Family
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infectious Disease Incubation Period*
  • Male
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / diagnosis
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / therapy
  • Pneumonia, Viral / transmission*
  • SARS-CoV-2