Chinese authorities confirm they have identified the novel virus, named 2019-nCoV. According to the WHO, the new virus is a new strain of coronavirus. The source is still unknown, but most likely comes from animals. A coronavirus, which usually causes respiratory illnesses, refers to a family of viruses that includes the common cold and gastrointestinal infections. But it also includes much more severe diseases, like Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The term comes from the corona, or crown, of surface proteins that the virus uses to penetrate the cells of the infected human. Between November 2002 and July 2003, the SARS virus infected 8,096, killing a total of 774. At this stage, there are around 44 cases of the new coronavirus confirmed.