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      Latest discoveries

      Expert: Summer unlikely to see drop in COVID-19 cases

      By Zhang Yangfei | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-04-27 16:00

      It is not likely that the number of COVID-19 cases will drop significantly in the summer worldwide, a Chinese infectious disease expert said on Monday.

      Although the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus disappeared in the summer in 2003, this novel coronavirus appears to be very different from the past viruses, said Wang Guiqiang, director of the infectious disease department at the Peking University First Hospital.

      It is believed that this virus is sensitive to heat and the temperature of boiling water can kill it, but natural temperatures cannot reach that high, he said at a news briefing in Beijing.

      He said judging from the current global epidemic situation, it is unlikely that the virus will die away in summer.

      Wang added that another outbreak of COVID-19 is possible when people start gathering in the autumn.

      He said what is important at this moment is to take unified global efforts to contain the virus because if one country fails to control it effectively, other countries will be affected, and if the world doesn't work together, any country may be prone to see a reoccurrence of new cases all year around.

      Jin Qi, head of the Institute of Pathogen Biology, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, said that it is wrong to take the SARS mindset and believe COVID-19 will go away in the summer as SARS did in 2003.

      Jin said these two viruses are very different. For example, people infected by SARS had a clear high fever but COVID-19 cases may be asymptomatic or only show very mild symptoms, meaning a large group of people can hardly be diagnosed.

      Based on these facts, he said it can be concluded that it is very likely that COVID-19 will coexist with humans for a very long period of time.

      Please feel free to contact us by sending your questions to question@chinadaily.com.cn or commenting on China Daily app. We will ask experts to answer them.

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