Coronaviruses can cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to viruses such as Sars, which killed hundreds during an outbreak in 2002-3.
A new virus from the same family as the deadly SARS disease has spread beyond China's borders for the first time with a case emerging in Thailand yesterday, United Nations and Thai officials said.
"Laboratory testing subsequently confirmed that the novel corona virus was the cause", World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic said, referring to the case in Thailand. A 61-year-old man with severe underlying conditions died from the coronavirus on Saturday.
Many earlier cases of the virus had reportedly been linked to a fish market in Wuhan.
The commission said the husband, who fell ill first, worked at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market.
It's possible that the husband brought home food from the market that then infected his wife, Hong Kong health official Chuang Shuk-kwan said at a news briefing.
If the Department of Medical Sciences and Chulalongkorn University's Faculty of Medicine both confirm that the Chinese patient is free of the virus, she will be discharged and will return to China, Anutin said.
Days after officials detailed the outbreak, a woman traveling from Wuhan to Bangkok was quarantined and later diagnosed with the virus, according to the Xinhua News Agency.
In this case, scientists in China who have studied the virus report that it doesn't appear to spread easily from one person to another, limiting its transmission to person-to-person contact.
She echoed Wuhan authorities' assertion that there remains no definitive evidence of human-to-human transmission. Within the same family as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) coronaviruses, this specific strain has never been identified in humans until this year. The new type of coronavirus has been detected in 41 patients. It then spread to more than two dozen countries, killing almost 800 people.