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JUN 17, 2020 9:00 AM PDT

Keynote Presentation: Another New Coronavirus?: The Coronaviruses of the 21st Century

C.E. Credits: P.A.C.E. CE Florida CE
Speaker
  • Professor of Epidemiology, Director, Infectious Disease Epidemiology Certificate, Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health
    Biography
      Stephen S. Morse, Ph.D., is Professor of Epidemiology at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, where he also serves as Director of the Infectious Disease Epidemiology certificate and as chair of the Columbia University Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC). He was founding Director of the CDC-funded "Center for Public Health Preparedness" (2000-2005). Before coming to Columbia, Dr. Morse was Assistant Professor (virology) in The Rockefeller University (1985-1995), and Program Manager for Biodefense at DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) from 1995 to 2000. He was appointed in 2014 to the U.S. government's National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB). His research interests focus on infectious disease surveillance, and the epidemiology and assessment of emerging infectious diseases, including influenza. He was Chair of the NIH "Conference on Emerging Viruses" (1989), for which he originated the concept of emerging viruses/infections, was founding chair of ProMED (the Program to Monitor Emerging Diseases, best known for originating outbreak reporting on the Internet in 1994); and served on the Institute of Medicine (now National Academy of Medicine) Committee on Emerging Microbial Threats to Health (1990-1992), and chaired its Virology Task Force. His book Emerging Viruses (Oxford University Press, 1993) was selected by American Scientist as one of "The Top 100 Science Books of the [20th] Century". He was a founding member of the National Academies' "Forum on Emerging Infections" (later renamed the "Forum on Microbial Threats"), a founding section editor of the CDC journal Emerging Infectious Diseases, former Editor-in-Chief of the Pasteur Institute's virology journal, and global co-Director of PREDICT (a USAID project to strengthen global capacity for surveillance and detection of new infectious disease threats) from 2009 to 2014. He is currently an Associate Editor of Disaster Medicine & Public Health Preparedness, and serves on the Editorial Board of several journals, including Health Security and Viral Immunology. He also serves on committees at the National Academies of Sciences and the World Health Organization (WHO), including the WHO Expert Group on Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Planning in the Eastern Mediterranean Region. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Academy of Microbiology, the American College of Epidemiology, the New York Academy of Medicine, the New York Academy of Sciences (and was Chair of its Microbiology Section), and other professional societies, and is a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He received his Ph.D. (in microbiology) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    Abstract

    Emerging infectious diseases” are those that are rapidly increasing in incidence or geographic range.  Most are zoonotic, entering the human population from other animal species.  None exemplifies this better than the coronaviruses.  The first three decades of the 21st Century have seen three zoonotic coronaviruses introduced into the human population.  The first zoonotic human coronavirus, SARS-CoV (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus), first appeared in China in late 2002, and spread worldwide from a single patient in Hong Kong in February 2003. When the epidemic was ended, in June 2003, there had been 8,098 cases (with 774 deaths), in 19 countries, including mainland China, Taiwan, Vietnam, Singapore, and Canada.  The natural host of SARS-CoV was a small bat (Rhinolophus), and the virus probably reached humans through live animal markets in south China.  Further investigation identified a number of related viruses in the same and other bat species.  A decade later, in 2012, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus appeared, with clinical presentation similar to SARS.  The epidemic is still ongoing, with over 2,500 cases (> 870 deaths, case-fatality ratio ~34%); approximately 80% of the cases are in Saudi Arabia.  Healthcare associated transmission accounted for most cases of SARS and MERS.  In late 2019, patients were hospitalized with atypical pneumonia in Wuhan, China.  The cause was identified as a coronavirus, subsequently named SARS-CoV-2 because of its close relationship to SARS (the disease is called Coronavirus Disease 2019, abbreviated as COVID-19).  Unlike SARS, SARS-CoV-2 could transmit readily from person to person by the respiratory route, allowing it to reach pandemic proportions.  With both SARS and SARS-CoV-2, the infections came to global attention through ProMED-mail (a system for Internet reporting and discussion of emerging infections).  The global response galvanized by SARS in 2003 makes an interesting comparison with the current response to SARS-CoV-2.

    Learning Objectives:

    1. Discuss 2 similarities and 2 differences between SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) and the earlier zoonotic coronaviruses (SARS and MERS-CoV)

    2. Evaluate the likelihood of future pandemic coronaviruses


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