A 30 hours old baby has become the youngest coronavirus case since the outbreak of the flu-like virus which has killed over 565 people.
The medical test which confirmed that the baby who was born on February 2 in Wuhan is infected with the virus, has led to speculation that the lethal illness could potentially be passed from a mother to a fetus as the baby’s mother tested positive to the virus before giving birth.
The baby weighed 3.25kg at birth (7lbs 2oz) and is now in a stable condition and under observation.
Dr Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston who also developed a vaccine for Sars (another coronavirus which spread in China in 2003), said there is more to know about the virus.
“We’re still in the deep learning curve about this virus. There’s more we don’t know than we do know about the new coronavirus.
“We know it happens for instance in HIV-Aids, but even there in the pre-retroviral drug era when I was taking care of infants with Aids, even in untreated mothers it was still only about 25% [of cases]”.
Chief physician of Wuhan Children Hospital’s neonatal medicine department, Zeng Lingkong, told Reuters;
“This reminds us to pay attention to mother-to-child being a possible route of coronavirus transmission.”