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Image of the Day: Coronavirus Under the Scope

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases releases a series of images that offer a close up look at the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

Amy Schleunes
Feb 17, 2020

ABOVE: The SARS-Cov-2 coronavirus (yellow), isolated from a patient, emerges from cultured cells (blue and pink).
NIAID-RML

New scanning and transmission electron microscope images of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus taken at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Rocky Mountain Laboratories show the virus’s similarities to the viruses that caused a MERS outbreak in 2012 and a SARS outbreak in 2002, according to a NIAID blog post. “That is not surprising,” the post says. “The spikes on the surface of coronaviruses give this virus family its name—corona, which is Latin for ‘crown,’ and most any coronavirus will have a crown-like appearance.”

SARS-CoV-2 with its telltale crown-like spikes
NIAID-RML

See “Scientists Compare Novel Coronavirus with SARS and MERS Viruses

Amy Schleunes is an intern at The Scientist. Email her at aschleunes@the-scientist.com.

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