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Lancet. 2015 Sep 5;386(9997):995-1007. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(15)60454-8. Epub 2015 Jun 3.

Middle East respiratory syndrome.

Author information

1
Division of Infection and Immunity, University College London, London, UK; NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, UCL Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.
2
Division of Respiratory Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, New Territories, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China; Stanley Ho Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, New Territories, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China.
3
Department of Microbiology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA; Department of Pediatrics, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA. Electronic address: stanley-perlman@uiowa.edu.

Abstract

Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is a highly lethal respiratory disease caused by a novel single-stranded, positive-sense RNA betacoronavirus (MERS-CoV). Dromedary camels, hosts for MERS-CoV, are implicated in direct or indirect transmission to human beings, although the exact mode of transmission is unknown. The virus was first isolated from a patient who died from a severe respiratory illness in June, 2012, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. As of May 31, 2015, 1180 laboratory-confirmed cases (483 deaths; 40% mortality) have been reported to WHO. Both community-acquired and hospital-acquired cases have been reported with little human-to-human transmission reported in the community. Although most cases of MERS have occurred in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, cases have been reported in Europe, the USA, and Asia in people who travelled from the Middle East or their contacts. Clinical features of MERS range from asymptomatic or mild disease to acute respiratory distress syndrome and multiorgan failure resulting in death, especially in individuals with underlying comorbidities. No specific drug treatment exists for MERS and infection prevention and control measures are crucial to prevent spread in health-care facilities. MERS-CoV continues to be an endemic, low-level public health threat. However, the virus could mutate to have increased interhuman transmissibility, increasing its pandemic potential.

PMID:
26049252
PMCID:
PMC4721578
DOI:
10.1016/S0140-6736(15)60454-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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