Maginnis talks with WVII about origins of coronavirus names

Melissa Maginnis, associate professor of microbiology, talked with WVII (Channel 7) about origins of the COVID-19/coronavirus name. The World Health Organization named the disease COVID-19 — CO for corona, VI for virus, D for disease and 19 for 2019, the year it started. Maginnis, a virologist, said COVID-19 refers to the disease caused by the coronavirus, or SARS-CoV-2. And prior to that, she said it was called the 2019 novel coronavirus. It was renamed, she said “because it was so closely related to the SARS coronavirus that was responsible for the SARS outbreak which occurred in 2002–2003.”