Environment

Where Do Coronaviruses Come From?

Covid-19 virus, which reached the pandemic status on March 11, is just one of the viruses that belong to the coronavirus group. Despite its similarities to other viruses of that type, there is still too much that we do not know about the virus.

Covid-19 virus, which reached the pandemic status on March 11, is just one of the viruses that belong to the coronavirus group. Despite its similarities to other viruses of that type, there is still too much that we do not know about the virus. However, we do know where they come from. 

Coronaviruses Are Transmitted From Animals

Coronaviruses are found in animals. Different types of animals also suffer from various conditions. In cows and pigs, the coronavirus causes massive diarrhea, while poultry has similar problems as humans, as their upper respiratory organs start to struggle. However, coronavirus is not found only in your typical farm animals. It is also present in bats, camels, and even cats. 

People are in the company of these animals all over the world (probably not so much with bats unless you are visiting Bruce Wayne’s house), and you might be wondering, are we in constant danger? Viruses, in a lot of cases, do not transfer from animals to humans. However, sometimes they evolve and change their genetic structure, which makes the transfer to humans possible

The Emergence Of Covid-19

Covid-19 is just the recent threat that emerged from the coronavirus family. As it was the case with other viruses that came from animals, this one too appeared in the city of Wuhan, more precisely - their food market. The Covid-19 was detected in both poultry and fish products on the market, with the latter being a bit more unusual to appear. However, before Covid-19, two other viruses showed exactly how dangerous they are to the population of this planet.  

MERS

This virus emerged in 2012 in Saudi Arabia. MERS is short for Middle East Respiratory System. Still, given the limiting geographic fact in the name, it has spread to almost 30 countries over the world. MERS is a coronavirus that came from camels, as it mutated and started to infect people.

This virus emerged in 2012 in Saudi Arabia.
This virus emerged in 2012 in Saudi Arabia.

MERS symptoms are not much different than other coronavirus manifestations - fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath. The mortality rate of this virus is diabolical, as around 35% of the people that get infected die. The last two cases confirmed in the US happened in 2014, but the virus is still a problem in the Arabic area. 

SARS

This virus was first detected in the south of China, as it came down to humans from small mammals. The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome has a mortality rate of about 10%, and ever since it first showed up in 2002, it spread across all continents except for Antarctica. Symptoms of SARS are fever, chills, and heavy body ache that usually progress to pneumonia. The last reported case of SARS was made in 2004, and the virus has been silent ever since.

About the Author

Antonia is a sociologist and an anglicist by education, but a writer and a behavior enthusiast by inclination. If she's not writing, editing or reading, you can usually find her snuggling with her huge dog or being obsessed with a new true-crime podcast. She also has a (questionably) healthy appreciation for avocados and Seinfeld.

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