Journal article

Genetic Evidence of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-Cov) and Widespread Seroprevalence among Camels in Kenya

Sheila Ommeh, Wei Zhang, Ali Zohaib, Jing Chen, Huajun Zhang, Ben Hu, Xing-Yi Ge, Xing-Lou Yang, Moses Masika, Vincent Obanda, Yun Luo, Shan Li, Cecilia Waruhiu, Bei Li, Yan Zhu, Desterio Ouma, Vincent Odendo, Lin-Fa Wang, Danielle E Anderson, Jacqueline Lichoti Show all

Virologica Sinica | SPRINGER | Published : 2018


We describe the first genome isolation of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in Kenya. This fatal zoonotic pathogen was first described in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2012. Epidemiological and molecular evidence revealed zoonotic transmission from camels to humans and between humans. Currently, MERS-CoV is classified by the WHO as having high pandemic potential requiring greater surveillance. Previous studies of MERS-CoV in Kenya mainly focused on site-specific and archived camel and human serum samples for antibodies. We conducted active nationwide cross-sectional surveillance of camels and humans in Kenya, targeting both nasal swabs and plasma samples from 1,163 cam..

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Awarded by External Cooperation Program of CAS

Awarded by National Science and Technology Major Project

Awarded by Sino-Africa Joint Research Center

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank all staff of the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, Chiefs and local assistants from County governments of West Pokot, Turkana, Baringo, Samburu, Laikipia, Isiolo, Marsabit, Mandera, Wajir, Garissa, Tana River, Kitui, and Makueni; Kenya camel association; Kenya Wildlife Service; and National Museums of Kenya. Sheila Ommeh is a recipient of the Chinese Academy of Science Presidents International Fellowship Initiative (CAS-PIFI). This work was funded by Sino-Africa Joint Research Center (SAJC201313 and SAJC201605), External Cooperation Program of CAS (153211KYSB20160001), and National Science and Technology Major Project (2018ZX0101004).