January 28, 2020
The deadly Chinese coronavirus outbreak began at a wholesale animal market in Wuhan city, experts have confirmed.
Scientists from the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention said tests proved humans caught it from animals at the Huanan Seafood Wholesales Market.
It is not clear which animal was carrying the pneumonia-like illness but the market was home to stalls trading dozens of different species, including rats and wolf cubs.
Last week experts suggested the disease may have originated in snakes, which are known carriers of coronaviruses.
The Huanan market was a hotspot with locals, who could choose to buy their meat ‘warm’ meaning it had been slaughtered just moment prior.
‘Thirty-one of the 33 positive samples were collected from the western zone of the market, where booths of wildlife trading concentrated,’ the CDC said, according to China’s state-owned Xinhua news agency.
‘The result suggests that the novel coronavirus outbreak is highly relevant to the trading of wild animals.’
The epidemic has so far claimed the lives of more than 80 people and infected nearly 3,000 in a month – but experts predict that number to be closer to 100,000.
This article was posted: Tuesday, January 28, 2020 at 5:31 am