August 8, 2022

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The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats



 

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats.


As early as March 2020, the team of Academician Chen Hualan of the Harbin Veterinary Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences published a research paper on the screening of susceptible animals on the preprint platform bioRxiv (the paper was published in Science in May 2020 ). 

The study found that SARS-CoV- 2 replicated efficiently in ferrets and cats , but weakly replicated in dogs, pigs, chickens, and ducks, and  also found that SARS-CoV-2 can be transmitted between cats through respiratory droplets .

 

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

 

At the same time, Professor Jin Meilin of Huazhong Agricultural University , Professor Shi Zhengli of Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences , etc. published papers on bioRxiv, and found that the new coronavirus infected the local cat group during the epidemic in Wuhan, and some cats in the homes of patients diagnosed with the COVID-19 had antibodies to the new coronavirus.

 

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

 

In December 2020, a study published in the journal Nature Communications showed that in a sample of 919 pets collected in northern Italy (mainly Lombardy) , 3.3% of dogs and 5.8% of cats had potentially Detected novel coronavirus neutralizing antibodies.

And pet cats and pet dogs of patients diagnosed with the COVID-19 have a higher probability of being tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies.

 

These studies all show that cats can be infected with the new coronavirus, so can cats infected with the new coronavirus transmit the virus to humans?

 

Recently, researchers from Prince of Songkla University in Thailand published a paper titled: Suspected Cat-to-Human Transmission of SARS-CoV-2, Thailand, July–September 2021 in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases .

 

The paper reports the world’s first case of cat-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus .

A tabby cat transmitted the new coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) to a veterinarian, prompting us that although cat-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus is rare, it does not mean that it is not.

 

 

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

 

Considering the global pandemic of the COVID-19 virus, the ability of the COVID-19 virus to spread between animals, and the close interaction between humans and cats, at the beginning of the COVID-19 virus pandemic, scientists have speculated that cats infected with the COVID-19 virus may transmit the new coronavirus to humans. sex. But there has never been an exact case to prove this.

 

And this latest paper provides solid evidence that cat-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus does exist. The discovery of this case was also very accidental.

 

Back in August 2021, a father and son who tested positive for the COVID-19 virus in Thailand were transferred to the isolation ward of the hospital at Prince of Songkla University. One of their 10-year-old pet cats also tested positive for the COVID-19 virus . While the cat was being tested, the cat happened to sneeze at the veterinarian, who was wearing a mask and gloves but no goggles.

 

Three days later, the veterinarian developed a fever, runny nose and cough before testing positive for Covid-19. None of her close contacts were infected with the new coronavirus, suggesting that she was infected by the cat.

 

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

The timeline of the cat-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus

 

Further genetic sequencing analysis confirmed that the veterinarian was infected with the same variant of the new coronavirus as the cat and cat owner, with the same viral genome sequence .

 

 

This report is the first case of cat-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus. Prior to this, two farmed animals, mink and hamster , and wild white-tailed deer in North America have been found to transmit the new coronavirus to humans. For example , the original Delta strain in Hong Kong was transmitted to humans by hamsters .

 

In fact, cases of cat-to-human transmission are very rare. Experimental studies have shown that cats infected with the new coronavirus do not shed much virus, and only for a few days, so there is no need to worry about cats spreading the new coronavirus to humans.

When dealing with pet cats suspected of being infected with the new coronavirus, we should not abandon them, but take better care of them.

 

Judging from the current situation, animals are a rare event in the spread of the new coronavirus, and humans are still the main communicators of the new coronavirus.

 

 

 

 

Paper link :

https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/28/7/21-2605_article

The world first case: Humans were infected with the new coronavirus from cats

(source:internet, reference only)


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