Beginning in December 2019, a small cluster of cases of a pneumonia of unknown origin was reported in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. Genetic sequencing of samples taken from the respiratory tract secretions of those exhibiting the suspicious pneumonia revealed the causative agent as a previously unknown coronavirus, subsequently named the 2019-nCoV virus. The virus is now officially named SARS-CoV-2 (also styled SARS-CoV2). The disease associated with the virus is now known as COVID-19 (also styled as Covid-19). The disease outbreak is also commonly known as the novel coronavirus outbreak or COVID-19 pandemic.
By March 25th, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) cited approximately 440,000 confirmed cases globally, with almost 20,000 deaths. Every continent in both the northern and southern hemispheres reported confirmed cases, and on March 11th, the WHO officially declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. (more)
This is a updated copy of a draft paper for a series of articles published or in publication for Cengage Gale's Science In Context Database, The Gale Blog, and/or the Gale Encyclopedia of Science, 6th edition. ) A pdf copy is available at https://www.academia.edu/39933001/2019-nCoV_Virus_Outbreak_and_Epidemic_...