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A Genetic Perspective of 2019-nCoV in Relation to Cross Species Transmission




Coronaviruses have caused two large scale pandemics severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in last two decades. It was thought that SARS-related coronaviruses (SARSr-CoV) is mainly found in bats. Previous studies have shown that some bat SARSr-CoVs have the potential to infect humans. The current outbreak of viral pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, China, was caused by a novel coronavirus designated 2019-nCoV by the World Health Organization, as determined by sequencing the viral RNA genome. Many initial patients were exposed to wildlife animals at the Huanan seafood wholesale market, where poultry, snake, bats, and other farm animals were also sold. Here we have taken an attempt to understand the genetic structure of 2019-nCoV and subsequent sequence analysis of multiple regions of its genome to identify unique motifs, receptor binding domain, hypervariable region which may direct some insight to future research for developing effective treatment against this novel coronavirus. We have identified unique motif in spike protein, multiple hypervariable regions, amino acids polymorphism in ORF8 and N protein. These may affect the conformation of the peptide and shed some light to cross species transmission, and subsequent host adaptation.


Genomics, Sequence Analysis, 2019-nCoV


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