Worldwide spreading of SARS-CoV-2
A global challenge
Since mid-December 2019, the pathogen Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been on the rise and the global spread of Coronavirus Disease 19 (COVID-19) was declared a pandemic by the WHO on March 11th, 2020.
Typical clinical symptoms of these affected patients are fever, dry cough, difficulty breathing (shortness of breath), headache and pneumonia. Severe disease progressions result in respiratory arrest due to alveolar damage, septic shock and/or multiple organ dysfunction or failure, which can lead to death. The number of cases in Germany but also worldwide continues to rise [1, 2, 3, 4].
Therapy depends on the severity of the disease and consists primarily of supportive measures. Various antiviral agents have been prioritized for investigation (e.g. by the WHO) in clinical trials in COVID-19 patients in the last few months.
In order to control the spread of the virus, most of the affected countries use contact restriction measures as well as extensive laboratory diagnostic of sick people and people who had contact with COVID-19 patients, such as hospital or nursing staff.
 Zhou P. et al., “A Pneumonia Outbreak Associated with a New Coronavirus of Probable Bat Origin“, Nature 579, Nr. 7798 (March 2020): 270–73
 Peeri NC et al., “The SARS, MERS and Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Epidemics, the Newest and Biggest Global Health Threats: What Lessons Have We Learned?“ International Journal of Epidemiology, Februar 22nd. 2020
 He F, Deng Y and Li W, “Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID‐19): What We Know?“, Journal of Medical Virology, March 14th 2020
 Nisreen M.A. Okba et al., “SARS-CoV-2 Specific Antibody Responses in COVID-19 Patients“, preprint (Infectious Diseases (except HIV/AIDS), March 20th 2020)