- Coronavirus can affect up to 150,000 people on a daily basis at its peak.
- Wuhan seafood market is not where the virus first spread, study finds.
- With no cure in sight and the virus outbreak rapidly expanding, markets are reacting with a sharp sell-off.
The Coronavirus outbreak doubles every 6.2 days. according to the prestigious Hong Kong University’s medicine dean Gabriel Leung. That figure validates the forecast of top virologists who claim that Coronavirus is ten times worse than SARS.
Hong Kong University is ranked a top 25 college globally and houses the world’s top 1% scientists according to Thomson Reuters.
How bad can the Coronavirus outbreak become?
Based on the model used by HKU, up to 150,000 individuals could be affected by Coronavirus in the next three to four months on a daily basis.
Leung’s team said that it confirmed transmission from humans to humans is already occurring in virtually every major city in China.
By April to May, Leung said Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Chongqing are likely to see widespread infections of Coronavirus.
Specifically, Leung noted that due to the close ties between Chongqing and Wuhan, Chongqing could see nearly 150,000 people affected per day at its peak.
Wuhan seafood market may have not been the root cause
Scientists have narrowed down the potential causes of Coronavirus to two main factors: transmission from bats or snakes to humans and a potential leak of virus from a protected facility.
Many virologists believe that the seafood market in Wuhan, which was closed right after the Coronavirus outbreak was publicized, was the start of the outbreak in the region.
On January 26, however, a new report surfaced and it claimed that the Wuhan seafood market may not have been the root cause of Coronavirus.
The report emphasized that the seafood market was most certainly the distribution point of the virus, but it was not the place where the virus first emerged.
Chinese virologists and scientists said in a study entitled “Clinical features of patients infected with 2019 novel coronavirus in Wuhan, China” published on The Lancet that the earliest case of the virus was found on December 1, 2019, before the link to the seafood market was found.
13 of the 41 early cases of coronavirus also had no links to the seafood market, suggesting that the outbreak may have started much earlier than December.
That raises the question on whether the root of the outbreak is not the Wuhan seafood market and as such, the reach of the virus could be much worse.
South Korea incident shows how fast the virus can spread
A report from Hankyoreh, a mainstream publication in South Korea, said that the government confirmed the fourth confirmed case of coronavirus.
One 54-year-old man, who came to South Korea after staying Wuhan, is said to have roamed around the heart of Seoul, the nation’s capital for several days.
He visited hotels, hospitals, restaurants, and many stores in Seoul. The government said that it estimates the individual affected 74 people.
It is realistically difficult to accurately estimate how many people the individual may have affected during his stay in South Korea.
Due to the incident and the worsening sentiment around the coronavirus outbreak, the stock market of South Korea fell by more than 3% on a single day.
This article was edited by Samburaj Das.