In a breakthrough moment for India,a group of scientists in India has captured the first images of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 disease.
The scientists in Pune Virology Lab has captured the image of the coronavirus. The image was caught by using transmission electron microscope imaging. The findings were published in the Indian Journal of Medical Research.
The images of the virus are from the throat swab of the first laboratory-confirmed case in India The patient was a medical student from Kerala. She was among three students studying medicine in Wuhan. They were diagnosed with Covid-19 after returning home.
Images of the Sars-Cov-2 virus closely resembles the Mers-Cov virus that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus in 2012, and the 2002 Sars-CoV virus that causes Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) coronavirus.
“Coronavirus have a crown-like appearance and these spikes on the surface give this virus family its name, as corona means crown in Latin. They have evolved to recognize a variety of receptors, including protein receptors and sugar receptors, and enter cells by first recognizing a host-cell-surface receptor for viral attachment, and then fusing viral and host membranes for entry,” said Dr Nirmal K Ganguly, former director general, Indian Council of Medical Research.