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CDC Renounces 3rd U.S. MERS Case; Saudi Officials Working With WHO, Other Experts On Outbreak

Media outlets report on news surrounding the ongoing Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak.

Associated Press: Officials take back report of MERS spread in U.S.
“Health officials on Wednesday backtracked on an earlier report that a mysterious Middle East virus had apparently spread from one person to another in the United States…” (Stobbe, 5/28).

HealthDay News: CDC: 3rd Suspected MERS Case Was False Alarm
“…Preliminary tests indicated that the Illinois man had tested positive for antibodies for MERS, formally called Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. Since then, however, CDC scientists tested additional blood samples and found that he was not infected with MERS…” (Reinberg/Thompson, 5/28).

New York Times: Health Officials Reverse Diagnosis of MERS in Illinois Man
“…The most likely explanation, one of the officials said, is that the preliminary test had cross-reacted with antibodies the man had to a previous coronavirus infection…” (McNeil, 5/28).

Reuters: U.S. MERS patient did not infect Illinois resident: CDC
“…The new analysis means that no MERS infections have been found in any of the contacts of the two MERS patients in the U.S…” (Begley, 5/28).

New York Times: Iran: MERS Virus Reaches Its 20th Country
“…According to the World Health Organization, 636 laboratory-confirmed cases of MERS have been reported, including 193 deaths. Most of the deaths have been in Saudi Arabia. Iran is the 20th country to report MERS” (Gladstone, 5/29).

Reuters: Hunt for MERS source should look beyond camels: veterinary officials
“Scientists lack proof that camels are the source of a deadly new virus that has killed 186 people in Saudi Arabia and should widen their hunt to other animals, veterinary experts meeting in Paris said…” (de La Hamaide, 5/28).

Reuters: Saudi health minister says working with WHO to fight MERS
“Saudi Arabia is working with international scientific organizations to improve its response to a deadly new virus that has killed 186 people in the kingdom, its acting health minister Adel Fakieh told Reuters on Wednesday…” (McDowall, 5/28).