Position paper on Novel Human Pathogenic Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2
Eminent virologists Luis Enjuanes, Isabel Sola and Sonia Zúñiga at the Coronavirus Laboratory at the National Center of Biotechnology (CNB-CSIC) in Madrid, Spain, wrote a position paper on the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 causing the COVID-19 pandemic, that we proudly present on the EAM website.
Juan Ortín, Member of the European Academy of Microbiology (EAM):
The world is facing the most dramatic public health problem since the 1918 influenza pandemic, that was responsible for something between 20 and 50 million deaths. The newly appeared SARS-CoV-2 has affected so far several hundred thousand people and resulted in several tens of thousands deaths worldwide. The local epidemics in Wuhan, China has evolved into a pandemic in just two months and threaten to affect a sizable fraction of the world population and kill millions of people.
The strong, but unfortunately delayed, response of the public health authorities in China and lately in Europe and the USA will hopefully abort such a rapid spread of the virus and save us time to put in place the rapidly developed diagnostic kits and potential antiviral approaches and vaccines under study.
In this context, it is extremely timely to have the article presented here by Luis Enjuanes, Isabel Sola and Sonia Zúñiga on the present situation of the pandemic, the scientific challenges we are facing and the advances obtained so far and foreseen for the next future. Professor Luis Enjuanes is a world-class leader in Coronavirus research with more than three decades of experience in the field, particularly in the study of the antigenicity and pathogenicity of various Coronaviruses, including SARS and MERS, and the development of live attenuated vaccines for these agents. His opinion is most valuable in these times of uncertainty for all of us.