Coronaviridae and SARS-associated Coronavirus Strain HSR1

Elisa Vicenzi, Filippo Canducci, Debora Pinna, Nicasio Mancini, Silvia Carletti, Adriano Lazzarin, Claudio Bordignon, Guido Poli, Massimo Clementi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


During the recent severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak, the etiologic agent was identified as a new coronavirus (CoV). We have isolated a SARS-associated CoV (SARS-CoV) strain by injecting Vero cells with a sputum specimen from an Italian patient affected by a severe pneumonia; the patient traveled from Vietnam to Italy in March 2003. Ultrastructural analysis of infected Vero cells showed the virions within cell vesicles and around the cell membrane. The full-length viral genome sequence was similar to those derived from the Hong-Kong Hotel M isolate. By using both real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction TaqMan assay and an infectivity plaque assay, we determined that approximately 360 viral genomes were required to generate a PFU. In addition, heparin (100 mg/mL) inhibited infection of Vero cells by 50%. Overall, the molecular and biologic characteristics of the strain HSR1 provide evidence that SARS-CoV forms a fourth genetic coronavirus group with distinct genomic and biologic features.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)413-418
Number of pages6
JournalEmerging Infectious Diseases
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Coronaviridae and SARS-associated Coronavirus Strain HSR1'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this