Animal origins of MERS-CoV
As with SARS-CoV, most early MERS cases had contact history with animals,e.g., dromedary camels. MERS-CoV RNA was detected in camels frmnSaudi Arabia, Qatar and Eigypt and showed high similarities (>99%) to human MERS-CoV in genomic sequences. Serological evidence further confirmed a high prevalence of MERS-CoV in camels in the Middle East, Africa and Europe (Spain). The neutralization antibodies in camels could be traced back to 1983. These results strongly suggested that MERS-CoV infection in humans were transmitted through close contact with infected camels.