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Coronaviruses (MERS and SARS)

In 2003, a novel coronavirus emerged from China and swept across the globe, causing deadly illness. More than 8,000 people fell ill with severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), and 774 died. The SARS coronavirus drew the collective focus of researchers throughout the world, but the disease disappeared quickly. No cases of SARS have been reported since 2004. In 2012, a new coronavirus emerged, causing an illness similar to SARS. Again, researchers at NIAID and across the globe have initiated studies to understand the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV)—and how to stop it.

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Last Updated February 29, 2016