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Isolation and characterization of SARS-CoV-2 from the first US COVID-19 patient

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Date: 3rd March 2020 | Source: BioRxiv

Authors: Jennifer Harcourt, Azaibi Tamin, Xiaoyan Lu, Shifaq Kamili, Senthil Kumar Sakthivel, Lijuan Wang, Janna Murray, Krista Queen, Brian Lynch, Brett Whitaker, Ying Tao, Clinton Paden, Jing Zhang, Yan Li, Anna Uehara, Haibin Wang, Cynthia Goldsmith, Hannah Bullock, Rashi Gautam, Craig Schindewolf, Kumari G. Lokugamage, Diona Scharton, Jessica Plante, Divya Mirchandani, Stephen Widen, Krishna Narayanan, Shinji Makino, Thomas Ksiazek, Kenneth S. Plante, Scott Weaver, Vineet D. Menachery, Natalie J. Thornburg.

The etiologic agent of the outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan China in January-2020, was identified as severe acute respiratory syndrome associated coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The first US patient was diagnosed by the State of Washington and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on January 20, 2020.

We isolated virus from nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal specimens, and characterized the viral sequence, replication properties, and cell culture tropism. We found that the virus replicated to high titers in Vero-CCL81 cells and Vero E6 cells in the absence of trypsin.

We also deposited the virus into two virus repositories, making it broadly available to the public health and research communities. We hope that open access to this important reagent will expedite development of medical countermeasures.

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