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To support urgent research to combat the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19, caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the editorial teams at Nature Research have curated a collection of relevant articles. Our collection includes research into the basic biology of coronavirus infection, its detection, treatment and evolution, research into the epidemiology of emerging viral diseases, and our coverage of current events. The articles will remain free to access for as long as the outbreak remains a public health emergency of international concern.


As the international community responds to an outbreak of coronavirus-induced pneumonia in Wuhan, China, early and open data sharing — which are vital for its control — depend on the trust that the data will not be used without proper attribution to those who generated it.

Editorial | | Nature Microbiology

This study describes the development of an approach to rapidly screen lineage B betacoronaviruses, such as SARS-CoV and the recently emerged SARS-CoV-2, for receptor usage and their ability to infect cell types from different species. Using it, they confirm human ACE2 as the receptor for SARs-CoV-2 and show that host protease processing during viral entry is a significant barrier for viral entry.

Article | | Nature Microbiology

Biology of infection and viral structure

Dampened activation of the NLR family pyrin domain containing 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome in bat primary immune cells in response to infection with multiple zoonotic viruses is caused by decreased transcriptional priming, the presence of a unique splice variant and an altered leucine-rich repeat domain of bat NLRP3.

Article | | Nature Microbiology

Antibodies that target the N-terminal domain (NTD) of the MERS-CoV spike remain poorly characterized. Here, Zhou et al. report the structural and functional analysis of the NTD-targeting mAb 7D10 and show that it synergizes with antibodies targeting the receptor-binding domain against different MERS-CoV strains.

Article | Open Access | | Nature Communications

Ubiquitin-like protein ISG15 is an interferon-induced protein that has been implicated as a central player in the host antiviral response. In this Review, Perng and Lenschow provide new insights into how ISG15 restricts and shapes the host response to viral infection and the viral immune-evasion strategies that counteract ISG15.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Microbiology

Therapeutics and diagnostics

Remdesivir (RDV) is a broad-spectrum antiviral drug with activity against MERS coronavirus, but in vivo efficacy has not been evaluated. Here, the authors show that RDV has superior anti-MERS activity in vitro and in vivo compared to combination therapy with lopinavir, ritonavir and interferon beta and reduces severe lung pathology.

Article | Open Access | | Nature Communications

Corticosteroid therapy is frequently used for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) but its use is associated with increased risk of pneumonia. Here the authors show that corticosteroid use impairs innate and adaptive immunity to rhinovirus infection, which is restored by exogenous IFNβ.

Article | Open Access | | Nature Communications

Rachel Graham et al. show that coronaviruses with extensively rewired transcription regulatory networks are effective vaccine candidates against Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus. The reversion of live-attenuated vaccine strains to virulence can be avoided with these vaccines.

Article | Open Access | | Communications Biology

Deubiquitylating enzymes (DUBs) have been implicated in several human diseases, including cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, inflammatory and autoimmune disorders, as well as infectious diseases. Here, Jackson and colleagues discuss the pathological roles of DUBs, consider the challenges in the development of selective DUB inhibitors and highlight first-generation agents approaching clinical trials.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Drug Discovery

Clinical metagenomic next-generation sequencing (mNGS) is rapidly moving from bench to bedside. This Review discusses the clinical applications of mNGS, including infectious disease diagnostics, microbiome analyses, host response analyses and oncology applications. Moreover, the authors review the challenges that need to be overcome for mNGS to be successfully implemented in the clinical laboratory and propose solutions to maximize the benefits of clinical mNGS for patients.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Genetics

So-called super-antibodies are highly potent, broadly reactive antiviral antibodies that offer promise for the treatment of various chronic and emerging viruses. This Review describes how recent technological advances led to their isolation from rare, infected individuals and their development for the prevention and treatment of various viral infections.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Immunology

Epidemiology and evolution

Mutation. The word naturally conjures fears of unexpected and freakish changes. Ill-informed discussions of mutations thrive during virus outbreaks, including the ongoing spread of SARS-CoV-2. In reality, mutations are a natural part of the virus life cycle and rarely impact outbreaks dramatically.

Comment | | Nature Microbiology

Coronaviruses have a broad host range and distribution, and some highly pathogenic lineages have spilled over to humans and animals. Here, Cui, Li and Shi explore the viral factors that enabled the emergence of diseases such as severe acute respiratory syndrome and Middle East respiratory syndrome.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Microbiology

This Review Article describes how recent advances in viral genome sequencing and phylogenetics have enabled key issues associated with outbreak epidemiology to be more accurately addressed, and highlights the requirements and challenges for generating, sharing and using such data when tackling a viral outbreak.

Review Article | | Nature Microbiology

As the line dividing human and wild habitats becomes thinner, we might be brewing the world's next big pandemic. Zoonoses are diseases that are naturally transmitted between animals and humans, and a new project aims to predict their occurrence.

Feature | | Nature Ecology & Evolution

Zoonotic diseases present a substantial global health burden. In this Opinion article, Plowrightet al. present an integrative conceptual and quantitative model that reveals that all zoonotic pathogens must overcome a hierarchical series of barriers to cause spillover infections in humans.

Opinion | | Nature Reviews Microbiology

Next-generation sequencing has the potential to support public health surveillance systems to improve the early detection of emerging infectious diseases. This Review delineates the role of genomics in rapid outbreak response and the challenges that need to be tackled for genomics-informed pathogen surveillance to become a global reality.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Genetics

The virulence of viruses is a major determinant of the health burden of viral infections in humans and other species. In this article, Geoghegan and Holmes discuss how largely disparate research fields — theoretical modelling of virulence evolution and experimental dissection of genetic virulence determinants in laboratory model systems — can be bridged by considering real genomic data of viral evolution in a phylogenetic context. They describe the underlying principles of virulence evolution and how they apply to real-world viral infections and outbreaks of global importance.

Review Article | | Nature Reviews Genetics

Understanding global epidemics spread is crucial for preparedness and response. Here the authors introduce an analytical framework to study epidemic spread on air transport networks, and demonstrate its power to estimate key epidemic parameters by application to the recent influenza pandemic and Ebola outbreak.

Article | Open Access | | Nature Communications