Coronaviruses have been at the core of our work at HKU-Pasteur Research Pole since the SARS outbreak in 2003 (See our papers on the subject). Monitoring closely the emergence of novel viruses is one of our primary missions, which is why our 2019 HKU-Pasteur Virology Course was dedicated to the study of coronaviruses, from identification to the understanding of their origin, evolution, transmissibility, molecular biology, epidemiological and clinical features.
HKU-Pasteur’s teams are on high alert to study 2019-nCoV. In coordination with other laboratories from the School of Public Health (HKU), our researchers work under the supervision of Professor Malik Peiris, Co-Director of HKU-Pasteur, and Leo Poon, Division of Public Health Laboratory Sciences, to advance the understanding and the treatment of this novel coronavirus. In 2003, Malik Peiris and his team, which included Leo Poon, played a key role in the discovery that a novel coronavirus was the cause of SARS, its diagnosis and pathogenesis and contributed to its control. HKU-Pasteur and SPH have, over the years, developed several tests for molecular diagnosis and sero-epidemiology of emerging coronaviruses.