The deadly coronavirus can spread via a simple cough, sneeze or handshake and the virus can live on inanimate objects such as door handles.
Coronavirus has killed around 362 people so far and has affected more than 17,200 people across the world. The highly contagious disease started from the Huanan Seafood Market in the city of Wuhan, China. Scientists after much research found a 96% similarity in the virus DNA to a coronavirus in bats proving bats to be the main reason for this outbreak. Recent research at Peking University also implicated snakes to be the cause of it.
The deadly coronavirus has killed 362 people so far and the number is increasing day by day. Scientists in Wuhan analyzed samples taken from seven coronavirus patients and found a 96% similarity in the virus DNA to a coronavirus in bats. According to the experts, the main cause of this disease is the wholesale animal market in Wuhan city where live animals such as koalas, rats and wolf pups were available at the Huanan Seafood Market.
Most of the scientists are blaming bats but the recent research at Peking University implicated snakes as the main reason for this virus's outbreak.
It's spreading ration is higher than that of the SARS virus that killed some 800 people in 2002 and 2003.
Dr Michael Skinner, reader in virology at Imperial College London, said: 'The discovery definitely places the origin of nCoV in bats in China.
'We still do not know whether another species served as an intermediate host to amplify the virus, and possibly even to bring it to the market, nor what species that host might have been.
'But the high level of sequence similarity between nCoV and TG13 is not really compatible with some of the more exotic hosts that were considered earlier in the epidemic.'
Zheng-Li Shi, a virologist, and researcher at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, and colleagues, analyzed samples of seven people with what's been dubbed '2019-nCoV'. Six among those seven were the workers at the main animal market of Wuhan. After examining the patients, it was found that the DNA of the virus was almost 100 percent identical to each other in five of the patients.
After further research, the DNA of the virus was matched with TG13, a coronavirus in bats. It was found that the virus sequence is 96 percent identical at the whole-genome level to a bat coronavirus, which proved bats being the main reason of this deadly outbreak.
A test developed by the researchers was able to detect 2019-nCoV in oral swab samples. But samples taken about 10 days later did not have a positive result. This suggests the most likely route of transmission is through the airways.
But other routes may also be possible according to the doctors, more patient data is being examined to investigate transmission routes.
Ian Jones, professor of virology at University of Reading, said: 'These two scientific papers provide the formal evidence for what is already widely known.
'2019-nCoV is a bat virus, and SARS-CoV, which caused an epidemic in 2002/3, is the closest relative seen previously in people.
'Most encouragingly though, this indicates that treatments and vaccines developed for SARS should work for the Wuhan virus.'
Dr Skinner added: 'Together, these papers describe the first steps in understanding the evolutionary and epidemiological origins of WHCV/2019-nCoV.
'The speed of their appearance attests to the rapid pace and extent of scientific and technological progress, globally - but not least in China, since the SARS epidemic in 2002-3.
'They confirm some of the early suspicions, discount others and, typically, raise even more questions that many are already trying to answer - but those answers need more information, which may not be forthcoming for several years.'
Scientists all over the world are trying to find a vaccine, on the other hand, the death toll soared overnight by 57 to 361 cases in China.
Chinese authorities reported 2,829 new cases over the last 24 hours, taking infections to above 17,450 worldwide.
The virus has spread all over the world in the month of January, it has reached 23 countries including the UK, US, Canada, and Australia.
Coronavirus, that was first time detected in December of 2019, is highly contagious and can be spread through a mere cough, sneeze or handshake and the virus can live on inanimate objects such as door handles.