If you don't remember your password, you can reset it by entering your email address and clicking the Reset Password button. You will then receive an email that contains a secure link for resetting your password
If the address matches a valid account an email will be sent to __email__ with instructions for resetting your password
Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, ChinaSH Ho Scoliosis Research Lab, Joint Scoliosis Research Center of Chinese University of Hong Kong and Nanjing University, Hong Kong, China
, recently published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases. The estimates on the basic reproduction number, R0, were carried out early in the outbreak as of January 22, 2020, when the surveillance data and the knowledge of the key epidemiological features of 2019-nCoV were limited.
The assumptions of exponential growth as well as other similar growth patterns are commonly accepted and adopted to capture the growth trends during the early phase of an outbreak (
, γ is estimated at 0.18 (95%CI: 0.14–0.22), 0.15 (95%CI: 0.12–0.18) and 0.11 (95%CI: 0.09–0.13) per day associated with 2-, 4- and 8-fold increase in the reporting rate, respectively. By using the serial interval (SI) estimate (mean ± SD at 7.5 ± 3.4 days) from
, we found the R0 at 3.33 (95%CI: 2.17–4.04), 2.69 (95%CI: 2.28–3.17) and 2.13 (95%CI: 1.88–2.42) associated with 2-, 4- and 8-fold increase in the reporting respectively. Our estimates were in line with the WHO estimates in both the early version (2-fold case) and the published version. The key message as we highlighted in the paper is the changes in the reporting rate. This is recently reconfirmed by Tuite and Fishman (
). We thank the editor and Dhungana to give us this opportunity to reclarify our key message that the reporting rate was not constant during the early outbreak and could affect the estimation of R0. There is indeed a large amount of later confirmed cases that were not counted in the early official daily situation reports
). In other words, if the same reporting standard in the second half of January was applied to the first half of January, the number of cases would be much higher. Other teams either used a retrospective dataset which was not publicly available on January 23, 2020 or used overseas reported cases which were not (to a much less extent) affected by the changes in reporting rate.
, an additional sensitivity analysis on the R0 estimates and varying SI and reporting rate was conducted and is shown in Figure 1. We report that R0 estimates increase while the mean SI increases or the SD of SI decreases. By selecting a mean between 7 and 8 days and SD between 3 and 4 days for SI of 2019-nCoV, the R0 estimates are largely consistent within a range from 2 to 4 in many existing reports (
), see panels (f), (g), (j) and (k) Fig. 1. We conclude that our previous estimation and main conclusions in hold based on the reasonable selection of the SI estimates of 2019-nCoV. Not only is our early version (2-fold case) in line with the WHO estimates, but also we pointed out the issue in the reporting rate changes in the official reported cases.
Ethics approval and consent to participate
The ethical approval or individual consent was not applicable.
Availability of data and materials
All data and materials used in this work were publicly available.
Consent for publication
WW was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Number 61672013) and Huaian Key Laboratory for Infectious Diseases Control and Prevention (Grant Number HAP201704), Huaian, Jiangsu, China.
The funding agencies had no role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; preparation, review, or approval of the manuscript; or decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
Conflict of interests
The authors declared no competing interests.
All authors conceived the study, carried out the analysis, discussed the results, drafted the first manuscript, critically read and revised the manuscript, and gave final approval for publication.
The authors thank Cindy Y Tian from the Chinese University of Hong Kong for helping in processing the reference files.
The basic reproductive number of Ebola and the effects of public health measures: the cases of Congo and Uganda.
I have read the original article "Preliminary estimation of the basic reproduction number of novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in China, from 2019 to 2020: A data-driven analysis in the early phase of the outbreak" which is recently published in your esteemed journal "International Journal of Infectious Diseases". Firstly, I would like to congratulate the authors for a successful publication and for making some contributions.