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J Infect ; 81(2): e26-e30, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-108718


BACKGROUND: Since its discovery, SARS-CoV-2 has been spread throughout China before becoming a global pandemic. In Beijing, family clusters are the main mode of human-human transmission accounting for 57.6% of the total confirmed cases. METHOD: We present the epidemiological and clinical features of the clusters of three large and one small families. RESULT: Our results revealed that SARS-CoV-2 is transmitted quickly through contact with index case, and a total of 22/24 infections were observed. Among those infected, 20/22 had mild symptoms and only two had moderate to severe clinical manifestations. Children in the families generally showed milder symptoms. The incubation period varied from 2 to 13 days, and the shedding of virus from the upper respiratory tract lasted from 5 to over 30 days. A prolonged period of virus shedding (>30 days) in upper respiratory tract was observed in 6/24 cases. CONCLUSION: SARS-CoV-2 is transmitted quickly in the form of family clusters. While the infection rate is high within the cluster, the disease manifestations, latent period, and virus shedding period varied greatly. We therefore recommend rigorously testing contacts even during the no-symptom phase and consider whether viral shedding has ceased before stopping isolation measures for an individual.

Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Family , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Beijing/epidemiology , Betacoronavirus , Child , Child, Preschool , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Female , Humans , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 9(1): 761-770, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-29222


Circulating in China and 158 other countries and areas, the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak has caused devastating mortality and posed a great threat to public health. However, efforts to identify effectively supportive therapeutic drugs and treatments has been hampered by our limited understanding of host immune response for this fatal disease. To characterize the transcriptional signatures of host inflammatory response to SARS-CoV-2 (HCoV-19) infection, we carried out transcriptome sequencing of the RNAs isolated from the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) specimens of COVID-19 patients. Our results reveal distinct host inflammatory cytokine profiles to SARS-CoV-2 infection in patients, and highlight the association between COVID-19 pathogenesis and excessive cytokine release such as CCL2/MCP-1, CXCL10/IP-10, CCL3/MIP-1A, and CCL4/MIP1B. Furthermore, SARS-CoV-2 induced activation of apoptosis and P53 signalling pathway in lymphocytes may be the cause of patients' lymphopenia. The transcriptome dataset of COVID-19 patients would be a valuable resource for clinical guidance on anti-inflammatory medication and understanding the molecular mechansims of host response.

Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid , Chemokines/analysis , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Cytokines/analysis , Leukocytes, Mononuclear , Pneumonia, Viral/genetics , Transcriptome , Apoptosis , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Humans , Lymphopenia , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , RNA-Seq , Signal Transduction , Tumor Suppressor Protein p53
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 9(1): 313-319, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-337


From December 2019, an outbreak of unusual pneumonia was reported in Wuhan with many cases linked to Huanan Seafood Market that sells seafood as well as live exotic animals. We investigated two patients who developed acute respiratory syndromes after independent contact history with this market. The two patients shared common clinical features including fever, cough, and multiple ground-glass opacities in the bilateral lung field with patchy infiltration. Here, we highlight the use of a low-input metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS) approach on RNA extracted from bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF). It rapidly identified a novel coronavirus (named 2019-nCoV according to World Health Organization announcement) which was the sole pathogens in the sample with very high abundance level (1.5% and 0.62% of total RNA sequenced). The entire viral genome is 29,881 nt in length (GenBank MN988668 and MN988669, Sequence Read Archive database Bioproject accession PRJNA601736) and is classified into ß-coronavirus genus. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that 2019-nCoV is close to coronaviruses (CoVs) circulating in Rhinolophus (Horseshoe bats), such as 98.7% nucleotide identity to partial RdRp gene of bat coronavirus strain BtCoV/4991 (GenBank KP876546, 370 nt sequence of RdRp and lack of other genome sequence) and 87.9% nucleotide identity to bat coronavirus strain bat-SL-CoVZC45 and bat-SL-CoVZXC21. Evolutionary analysis based on ORF1a/1b, S, and N genes also suggests 2019-nCoV is more likely a novel CoV independently introduced from animals to humans.

Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Disease Outbreaks , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adult , China , Female , Genome, Viral , Humans , Male , Phylogeny , RNA, Viral/genetics , Young Adult