Time to Catch Coronavirus

News of coronavirus has been splashed across the internet since the end of 2019, but it has been done to make the general public aware of the risks of coronavirus. There have been approximately 85,403 cases of coronavirus worldwide reported to date. The virus first emerged in December 2019 in the Hubei province of China and has since spread all over the world, hitting six different continents. The origin of coronavirus has been widely speculated, eating bat species has been attributed as the origin of the coronavirus outbreak.

Coronavirus is an epidemic, the status may change to a pandemic if cases continue to rise worldwide. The symptoms of coronavirus include respiratory difficulties, fever, and cough, further complications that can occur are pneumonia, kidney problems, and even death. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, please stay at home in order to prevent exposure to others and immediately contact your healthcare provider for further instructions. The WHO has suggested, regularly washing hands, keeping a distance from those coughing or sneezing, and not touching your face, as a way to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Many individuals infected with coronavirus have been required to isolate themselves in order to prevent the spread of infection, such as those in Hubei province where there is an ongoing lockdown, and those on the cruise ship called "The Diamond Princess", and many others are facing a similar situation. Individuals abroad have been flown back to their hometowns and put into quarantine, where they will spend 14 days to ensure they are infection-free.

It has been suggested that improving diagnostic tools could allow a rapid response to the outbreak and delay the spread of coronavirus. Sherlock Biosciences is a company that has created a CRISPR based tool called the SHERLOCK system, the technology uses CRISPR-Cas13 and has been able to detect various viruses from patient samples and therefore has potential applications in being able to detect coronavirus.

How SHERLOCK works:

1) Samples are taken from the patient.

2) RNA levels are amplified.

3) A reporter that is sensitive to Cas13 is added.

4) Cas13 and gRNA specific for the viral RNA are added to the sample.

5) If any viral RNA is present it will be cleaved by Cas13 and any nearby RNA containing the reporter will also be cleaved, producing a signal.

6) Then it will accumulate on the test strip for a positive or negative signal.


1. https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019