Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus

Recent News

Apr 23, 2014

WHO office sounds alarm as MERS cases push higher

The WHO offered investigation help, with 33 more infections reported in Saudi Arabia and UAE.

Apr 23, 2014

Gush of MERS cases sparks speculation about causes

Experts say possibilities include a change in the virus and a seasonal pattern to transmission.

Apr 22, 2014

Antibody study hints at MERS-CoV in African camels

Scientists found that camels in three widely separated African countries had MERS-CoV-like antibodies.

Apr 21, 2014

Saudi Arabia sacks health chief as MERS cases surge

The Saudi MERS count surged by 37 cases and 6 deaths in 3 days, including 21 new cases in Jeddah's outbreak.

Apr 18, 2014

Saudis report 12 more MERS cases; Greece has its first

The outbreak in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, had six more cases, and Greece reported a case with a link to Jeddah.

Apr 17, 2014

MERS outbreaks grow; Malaysian case had camel link

Seven cases were added to the Jeddah outbreak in Saudi Arabia, and 3 in the UAE.

Apr 16, 2014

MERS cases reach Far East; Saudi Arabia reports 6 more

The disease has made a long-feared leap outside the Middle East, killing a man in Malaysia and infecting a nurse in the Philippines.

Apr 15, 2014

MERS tallies grow in Jeddah and UAE

A Jeddah outbreak increased by 5 cases, while the WHO reports 10 recent cases in UAE health workers.

Apr 14, 2014

News Scan for Apr 14, 2014

E coli levels in US
MERS virus in camels
Hepatitis A outbreak in Europe
Apr 14, 2014

Nine Saudi MERS cases add to Jeddah outbreak; Yemen has first case

Saudi Arabia announces nine new MERS cases as Yemen reports its first.

Resources & Literature



Jump to Recent Literature


Last updated Jan 28, 2014

Latest Case Information

Frequently updated case list from FluTrackersTransmission electron micrograph of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus
Case table and other info from Flu Wiki

Disease outbreak news from WHO
Global case map from California Department of Public Health (Jan 9, 2014)
Global overview of MERS-CoV slides from WHO (May 23, 2013)
Naming of MERS-CoV from Science (May 6, 2013)
Genetic sequence of MERS-CoV from PHE (click on Coronavirus Surveillance tab at bottom)
Graphs, charts, maps, and other info from Virology Down Under
Latest news from ABC News

Health Agency Documents

World Health Organization (WHO)

MERS-CoV page
Frequently asked questions (Nov 19, 2013)
Home care for patients with MERS-CoV infection (Aug 8, 2013)
Latest case update (Jul 13, 2013)
Interim Case Definitions
(Jul 3, 2013)
Interim surveillance recommendations (Jun 27, 2013)
Interim recommendations for laboratory testing (Sep 16, 2o13)                                                                    Summary and literature update (Jun 20, 2013)                                                                                                 Seroepidemiological investigation of contacts (Nov 19, 2013)                                                                         Risk factors of infection among health care personnel (Jan 27, 2014)
Travel recommendations (Jun 5, 2013)
Naming of the novel coronavirus (May 28, 2013)
Guidance for health care professionals (May 6, 2013)
Clinical management

US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

MERS-CoV page 
Frequently asked questions  
(Jan 8, 2013)
Case definitions (Aug 19, 2013)
Interim guidance for healthcare professionals (Oct 17, 2013)
Guidance for travelers (Dec 1, 2013)
Infection prevention and control guidelines (Oct 17, 2013)
Information and guidance for clinicians (Jun 18, 2013)
Interim guidance for airline crew (Jun 10, 2o13)
Guidelines for evaluation of MERS-CoV(Jun 7, 2013)                                                                                         Interim guidelines for collection, processing and transport of clinical specimens (Jun 7, 2013)              Interim guidance for preventing MERS-CoV from spreading in homes and communities (Oct 17, 2013) Interim home care and isolation guidance for MERS-CoV (Sep 27, 2013)                                            MERS-CoV Images                                                  

European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC)

MERS-CoV page
Updated Rapid risk assessment (Sep 24, 2013)
Epidemiological update (Nov 25, 2013)
Confirmed case count table (Jun 3, 2013)

Public Health England (PHE)

MERS-CoV page
Treatment of MERS-CoV: Decision support tool (Jul 29, 2013)
Infection control advice (Jun 28, 2013)
Algorithm for management of possible cases (Nov 1, 2013)
Key facts  (Oct 4, 2013)
Algorithm for management of close contacts (Nov 1, 2013)
Risk assessment (Dec 11, 2013)
Epidemiological protocols (Nov 11, 2013)

Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

RT-PCR Assay fact sheet for health care professionals (May 30, 2013)
RT-PCR assay fact sheet for patients (May 30, 2013) 
Emergency use authorization (May 29, 2013)

World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)

Questions and answers 

Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)

Risk assessment (Jan 30, 2014)
Public health notice (Nov 19, 2013)
Travel health notice (Dec 3, 2013)
Frequently asked questions (Dec 3, 2013)
Infection prevention and control guidance (Oct 4, 2013)
Interim case definition (Sep 23, 2013)
Coronavirus in animals (May 28, 2013)
Case report form (Apr 22, 2013) 

Saudi Arabia Ministry of Health (MOH)

MERS-CoV Page 
Infection prevention and control precautions (May 15, 2013)
Frequently asked questions
Procedures for suspected or confirmed cases 
Media Statements  


Helen Branswell (@HelenBranswell)
Michael Coston (@Fla_Medic)
Martin Enserink (@martinenserink) (@FluTrackers)
Jason Gale (@jwgale)
Gregory Hartl (@HaertlG) (@healthmap)
Crawford Kilian (@crof)
nprGlobalHealth (@nprGlobalHealth)
Lisa Schnirring (@lisaschnirring)
Marc Sprenger (@ECDC_MSprenger)
World Health Organization (@WHO)

Recent Literature

Aburizaiza AS, Mattes FM, Azhar EI, et al. Investigation of anti-MERS-coronavirus antibodies in blood donors and abattoir workers in Jeddah and Makkah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, fall 2012. J Infect Dis 2013 (published online Nov 11)

Al-Tawfiq JA, Hinedi K, Ghandour J, et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome-coronavirus (MERS-CoV): a case-control study of hospitalized patients. Clin Infect Dis 2014 (published online Apr 9)

Alagaili AN, Briese T, Mishra N, et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection in dromedary camels in Saudi Arabia. mBio 2014 Feb 25;5(2):e00884-14

Alexandersen S, Kobinger GP, Soule G, et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus antibody reactors among camels in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in 2005. Transbound Emerg Dis 2014 (published online Jan 24)

Almazan F, DeDiego ML, Sola I, et al. Engineering a replication-competent, propagation-defective Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus as a vaccine candidate. MBio 2013 Sep 10; vol. 4 no. 5 e00650-13

Arabi YM, Afifi AA, Balkhy HH, et al. Clinical course and outcomes of critically ill patients with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection. Ann Intern Med 2014 (published online Jan 28)

Assiri A, Al-Tawfig JA, Al-Rabeeah AA, et al. Epidemiological, demographic, and clinical characteristics of 47 cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus disease from Saudi Arabia: a descriptive study. Lancet Infect Dis 2013 Sep;13(9):752-61

Assiri A, McGeer A, Perl RM, et al. Hospital outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. N Engl J Med 2013 Aug 1;369:407-16

Breban R, Riou J, Fontanet A. Interhuman transmissibility of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus: estimation of pandemic risk. Lancet 2013 Aug 24;382(9893):694-9

Cauchemez S, Fraser C, Kerkhove MDV, et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus: quantification of the extent of the epidemic, surveillance biases, and transmissibility. Lancet Infect Dis 2013 (published online Nov 13)

Cauchemez S, Van Kerkhove MD, Riley S, et al. Transmission scenarios for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and how to tell them apart. Euro Surveill 2013 Jun 13;18(24):pii=20503

CDC. Update: Severe respiratory illness associated with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV)—worldwide, 2012-2013. MMWR 2013 Jun 7;62(Early release):1-4

CDC. Updated information on the epidemiology of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection and guidance for the public, clinicians, and public health authorities, 2012-2013. MMWR 2013 Sep 27;62(38):793-6

Chan JFW, Chan KH, Kao RYT, et al. Broad-specturum antivirals for the emerging Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. J Infect 2013 (published online Oct 3)

Chu DKW, Poon LLM, Gomaa MM, et al. MERS coronavirus in dromedary camels, Egypt. Emerg Infect Dis 2014 (published online Feb 27)

Coleman CM, Frieman MB. Emergence of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. PLoS Pathog 2013 Sep 5;9(9):e1003595

Cotten M, Watson SJ, Kellam P, et al. Transmission and evolution of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in Saudi Arabia: a descriptive genomic study. Lancet 2013 (published online Sep 20) 

Cotten M, Watson SJ, Zumla AI, et al. Spread, circulation, and evolution of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. mBio 2014 Feb 18;5(1):e01062

Cui J, Eden J-S, Holmes EC, et al. Adaptive evolution of bad dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (dpp4): implications for the origin and emergence of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus. Virol J 2013 (published online Oct 10) 

de Groot RJ, Baker SC, Baric RS, et al. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV); announcement of the coronavirus study group. J Virol 2013 (published online May 15)

de Wit E, Rasmussen AL, Falzarano D, et al. Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes transient lower respiratory tract infection in rhesus macaques. Proc Natl Acad Sci 2013 (published online Sep 23)

Doremalen NV, Bushmaker T, Karesh WB, et al. Stability of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in milk. (Letter) Emerg Infect Dis 2014 (published online Apr 7)

Drosten C, Seilmaier M, Corman VM, et al. Clinical features and virological analysis of a case of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection. Lancet Infect Dis 2013 Sep;13(9):745-51

Du L, Zhao G, Kou Z, et al. Identification of receptor-binding domain in S protein of the novel human coronavirus MERS-CoV as an essential target for vaccine development. J Virol 2013 (published online Jul 3)

Eckerle I, Corman VM, Muller MA, et al. Replicative capacity of MERS coronavirus in livestock cell lines. Emerg Infect Dis 2013 (published online Dec 18)

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