新興傳染病，例如：SARS 和茲卡病毒感染症，為公共衛生上的重大議題。然而，如何產生這些新興傳染病的源頭，至今仍未清楚。日前流行病學研究指出，造成這次蔓延全球新冠肺炎的源頭是武漢華南海鮮市場，本研究從一位在武漢華南海鮮市場工作並於2019年12月26日確診的病例，從其支氣管肺泡灌洗檢體中進行核酸定序，找出一種新型冠狀病毒 (2019-nCoV)，利用演化樹分析此病毒完整的基因體發現，此新型冠狀病毒基因序列與SARS-like冠狀病毒有89.1%的相似性，而且此種SARS-like冠狀病毒，先前也曾在中國的蝙蝠中發現。這次新冠肺炎疫情全球蔓延，突顯病毒具人畜共同傳染的能力並會導致人類嚴重疾病。
Emerging infectious diseases, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Zika virus disease, present a major threat to public health1,2,3. Despite intense research efforts, how, when and where new diseases appear are still a source of considerable uncertainty. A severe respiratory disease was recently reported in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. As of 25 January 2020, at least 1,975 cases had been reported since the first patient was hospitalized on 12 December 2019. Epidemiological investigations have suggested that the outbreak was associated with a seafood market in Wuhan. Here we study a single patient who was a worker at the market and who was admitted to the Central Hospital of Wuhan on 26 December 2019 while experiencing a severe respiratory syndrome that included fever, dizziness and a cough. Metagenomic RNA sequencing4 of a sample of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid from the patient identified a new RNA virus strain from the family Coronaviridae, which is designated here ‘WH-Human 1’ coronavirus (and has also been referred to as ‘2019-nCoV’). Phylogenetic analysis of the complete viral genome (29,903 nucleotides) revealed that the virus was most closely related (89.1% nucleotide similarity) to a group of SARS-like coronaviruses (genus Betacoronavirus, subgenus Sarbecovirus) that had previously been found in bats in China5. This outbreak highlights the ongoing ability of viral spill-over from animals to cause severe disease in humans.
Author：Fan Wu, Su Zhao, Bin Yu, et al.