China has advised people against traveling in and out of Wuhan, the town hit by the novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) linked to the deadly Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS).
While nine people have died thanks to the new coronavirus-related pneumonia, 291 confirmed cases and 54 suspected cases were reported in China till Monday.
Also referred to as 2019-nCoV, the virus may be a new strain of coronavirus, previously not identified in humans. The symptoms of infection include fever, cough and breathing problems.
Over 500 Indian students study in Wuhan city’s medical colleges. However, Indian officials said most of them had left for home for the Chinese New Year holidays.
After a case of 1 Indian teacher infected by the virus in China was reported, India issued an advisory last week against visit Wuhan.
On Wednesday, the top of a high-level expert team of China’s National Health Commission (NHC) Zhong Nanshan said: “The current outbreak is concentrated within the city of Wuhan in central China, and is sporadic in other places.”
He confirmed people-to-people transmission of the coronavirus and infections among medical staff.
Zeng Guang, chief epidemiologist of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC), said infection cases were mainly among elderly people.
China’s People’s Daily said: “The geographical distribution of Wuhan’s infection cases indicates an in depth relationship between the outbreak and an area seafood market. Investigations showed that there have been previously illegal sales of wildlife within the market.
“Based on the findings within the whole genome sequencing, it are often speculated that wild animals could have played a key role within the emergence of the disease.”