SEVERE ACUTE RESPIRATORY SYNDROME (SARS)

Introduction

Characteristics

Transmission

Methods for Monitoring in the Environment

Methods for Measuring Human Exposure

Strategies for Preventing or Controlling Exposure


Harmful Effects

Absorption, Distribution and Metabolism

Sites of Toxicity

Biomarkers of Disease

Molecular Mechanisms of Action

Risk Assessment/Management

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INTRODUCTION

SEVERE ACUTE RESPIRATORY SYNDROME (SARS) is a respiratory illness caused by a virus belonging to the coronavirus family, which includes viruses that cause the common cold. The first report of SARS occurred in Asia in February 2003 and spread rapidly to over 24 countries in the following months. This outbreak resulted in a worldwide total of 8098 SARS cases and 744 deaths. There were 192 cases of SARS and zero deaths in the United States. Travelers returning from areas with SARS were cause for many of the U.S. cases. The SARS outbreak of 2003 was contained with the last known case of SARS occurring in Taiwan, China on June 15 2003. Since then a confirmed case of SARS was reported on September 8, 2003 in Singapore. However, this was an isolated case linked to accidental infection in the laboratory. While this case did not cause concern for international public health, the threat of re-emergence of the SARS associated coronavirus persists.

www.cdc.gov/ncidod/sars/factsheet.htm
www.who.int/csr/don/2003_09_24/en/