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Japan Confirms First Exposure of Mysterious China Virus

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Japanese authorities on Thursday reportedly confirmed the first case of infection from a new China coronavirus, after a middle-aged man from the Kanagawa prefecture, near Tokyo, tested positive.

According to a statement issued by the Japanese Health Ministry, cited by Reuters, the man, in his 30s, had been to the Chinese city of Wuhan, where there has been an outbreak of pneumonia believed to be caused by the new coronavirus strain.

Earlier, authorities of the Wuhan city in the central Chinese province of Hubei admitted that human-to-human transmission of the newly registered type of coronavirus is a possibility although there is no direct evidence currently available.

Among 41 confirmed cases, there are members of the same family: a husband who worked at a local seafood market — the suspected hotbed of the virus — and a wife who claimed she had not visited the market.

A research assistant with the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA carries a portable cooler marked with a biohazard label past the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, Thursday, Feb. 19, 2015 - Sputnik International
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On Tuesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) said that the virus could have limited human-to-human transmission but spreads fast.

The unknown kind of viral pneumonia was reported from Wuhan in early January. Infected individuals reportedly display symptoms typical of pneumonia and other acute respiratory diseases, prompting fears on the web that the nation might be experiencing a return of SARS, an epidemic that killed over 600 in China throughout 2002-2003.

Last week, the disease was confirmed to be a new type of coronavirus. On Saturday, China confirmed the first lethal case in Wuhan. The WHO has reportedly warned hospitals worldwide about a potential spread of the highly-contagious virus.

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