November 2002: Initial cases of a severe, new pneumonia appear in Guangdong Province, South China. The World Health Organization (WHO) is not warned.
Feb. 28, 2003: Hanoi, Vietnam, asks WHO representative Carlo Urbani for assistance with a similar disease. Urbani warns WHO of probable existence of new infection.
March 15: WHO issues emergency travel advisory, and creates network of 11 labs [including Hong Kong but not mainland China] to identify cause.
March 17: Human metapneumovirus isolated.
March 18: Hunt for SARS agent intensifies; 250 causes ruled out (www.the-scientist.com/news/20030318/05).
March 20: Guangdong doctor linked to SARS outbreak in Hong Kong (www.the-scientist.com/news/20030320/09).
March 21: Hong Kong and Germany isolate new agent. The Netherlands finds all German cases...