Scientists suspect that bats are the culprits for transmitting the COVID-19 disease to humans, and it looks like these animals are once again responsible for carrying some coronaviruses. Due to researchers from the University of Tokyo, a new type of coronavirus similar to SARS CoV-2 was found in a cave of bats from Japan.
To be more precise, the pathogen was found within the faeces of horseshoe bats. While a new investigation reveals that the pathogen is strikingly similar to the virus that affects the world today, that’s not even the weirdest part.
The new pathogen was found seven years ago
COVID-19 was certainly not around for humans in 2013, but the new discovery could mean that animals were struggling with it during those times. The genetic data of the new virus is similar by 81.5 percent with SARS-CoV-2.
Associate Professor Shin Murakami explained:
“It is thought that only a small number of coronaviruses are dangerous, but it is undeniable that there are species that infect humans in Japan,
“We will investigate wild animals and promptly investigate the actual situation. We need to figure it out.”
On the other hand, the planet has a lot to struggle with the COVID-19 disease. Countries like the US, France, Spain, UK, Italy, and others are reporting growing numbers of infections with the virus, and there’s no telling when it will all end.
As for Japan, the country is handling the pandemic pretty well, as it usually has below 800 cases of infections daily and almost always under 20 deaths caused by the virus every day.
Coronaviruses that make the shift from animals to humans don’t represent something new at all. Illnesses like COVID-19, SARS, MERS, and even common colds were caused by those coronaviruses.