A cluster of severe pneumonia of unknown etiology in Wuhan City, Hubei province in China emerged in December 2019. A novel coronavirus named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) was isolated from lower respiratory tract sample as the causative agent. The current outbreak of infections with SARS-CoV-2 is termed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) by the World Health Organization (WHO). COVID-19 rapidly spread into at least 114 countries and killed more than 4,000 people by March 11 2020. WHO officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, 2020. There have been 2 novel coronavirus outbreaks in the past 2 decades. The outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2002-2003 caused by SARS-CoV had a case fatality rate of around 10% (8,098 confirmed cases and 774 deaths), while Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) caused by MERSCoV killed 861 people out of a total 2,502 confirmed cases between 2012 and 2019. The purpose of this review is to summarize known-to-date information about SARS-CoV-2, transmission of SARS-CoV-2, and clinical features.
Keywords: COVID-19; Coronavirus; MERS-CoV; SARS-CoV-2; SARSCoV.