The UK alerted the World Health Organisation on Saturday to a case of acute respiratory syndrome with renal failure in a 49-year old man who had visited Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The man, a previously healthy, Qatari national, first showed symptoms on 3 September 2012 and was admitted to intensive care in Doha, Qatar on 7th. He was transferred by air ambulance to the UK on 11th where the Health Protection Agency confirmed infection with a previously unknown coronavirus.
According to Global News, there have been two other confirmed cases resulting in two deaths.
Coronaviruses infect the upper airways and gastrointestinal tract of mammals and birds. There are four to five strains known to infect humans and most are thought to simply cause a “common cold”. However, one coronavirus, SARS-CoV, led to a worldwide outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) because it unusually affects both upper and lower respiratory tract infections as well as causing gastroenteritis.