First Published: 2013-11-29

MERS hits expectant Jordanian couple in UAE
38-year-old Jordanian resident, his eight-month pregnant wife hospitalised.
Middle East Online

Experts still struggle to understand MERS

ABU DHABI - Two new cases of the potentially deadly MERS respiratory virus, including a heavily pregnant woman, have been reported in the United Arab Emirates, media Friday cited health authorities as saying.

A 38-year-old Jordanian resident was hospitalised with breathing problems and diagnosed to be a carrier of MERS, the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus.

His wife, who is eight months pregnant, was also hospitalised after being diagnosed as suffering from the disease, health authorities in Abu Dhabi said.

In July, the authorities reported that there had been seven MERS cases in the oil-rich Gulf federation in which foreign residents comprise 80 percent of the population.

The World Health Organisation says it has been informed of 160 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection worldwide since September last year, including 68 deaths.

Saudi Arabia is the worst affected country, accounting for 55 deaths out of 130 confirmed cases.

Experts are struggling to understand the MERS virus, for which there is no vaccine.

It is considered a deadlier but less-transmissible cousin of the SARS virus that erupted in Asia in 2003 and infected 8,273 people, nine percent of whom died.

In August, researchers pointed to Arabian camels as possible hosts of the virus.

Like SARS, MERS appears to cause a lung infection, with patients suffering from a temperature, cough and breathing difficulties.

But it differs in that it also causes rapid kidney failure and the extremely high death rate has caused serious concern.

 

US, Iranian top diplomats confront each other for first time

Moscow accuses US of hitting Syrian regime forces

Turkey, Iran and Iraq make joint threat against Kurd vote

Thousands of Huthi supporters mark 3 years since Sanaa takeover

Gemstone purchase essential for Najaf pilgrims

UN sets up probe of IS war crimes in Iraq

Air strikes kill 22 civilians in northwest Syria in 48 hours

Iranian supreme leader lashes out at Trump UN speech

Iraq attacks all remaining IS territory at once

Turkey jails lawyers representing hunger striking teachers

Syrian Kurds to hold first local elections in federal push

Qatari expats lauded as statesmen by Arab critics

Shipwreck off Libyan coast leaves over 100 migrants missing

Will Turkey’s opposition to Kurdish state translate into action?

US ups the ante on Iraq Kurds

Macron: Iran nuclear deal no longer enough

Trump’s mind made up on Iran but refuses to divulge

Scores of Iraqis missing during war against ISIS

Netanyahu rejects calls for mixed gender worship at Western Wall

Russia accuses US of missile treaty breach

Iran TV translator mocked for watering down Trump speech

Saudi Arabia hopes Kurdish referendum will not take place

Saudi invites women to sports stadium for first time

Saudi set to create $2.7 billion investment company

Humanitarian disaster grips Yemen three years since Houthi takeover

What will become of Iraq’s Hawija after ISIS?

Multi-ethnic Kirkuk tense ahead of referendum

UN awaits Iran’s defence against Trump nuclear deal threats

US-backed SDF seizes 90% of Syria's Raqa

Man hanged in Iran for rape, murder of child

Saudi to lift ban on internet phone calls

Sisi calls for peace, co-existence in Mideast

Erdogan demands Iraqi Kurds call off referendum

US looking to revisit Iran nuclear deal

Trump expects Gulf dispute to be resolved quickly

Bashir calls on Darfur displaced to return

Saudi Aramco could release accounts in early 2018

Saudi-led coalition says rebels hindering Yemen food imports

Jihadist activity prompts regime, Russian air strikes in Syria safe zone

Two prominent rights activists arrested in Saudi Arabia

Israel shoots down Hezbollah drone over Golan Heights

Iraqi forces launch assault on IS in western Anbar province

Families of the missing, the forgotten victims of war in Lebanon

25 killed in South Sudan clashes

Suicide attack on Iraq restaurant kills three