Coronavirus (COVID-19) Collection
- Nearly two years since the start of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, which has caused over 5 million deaths, the world continues to be on high COVID-19 alert. The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with national authorities, public health institutions and scientists have been closely monitoring and assessing the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 since January 2020 (WHO 2021a; WHO 2021b). The emergence of specific SARS-CoV-2 variants were characterised as Variant of Interest (VOI) and Variant of Concern (VOC), to prioritise global monitoring and research, and to inform the ongoing global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The WHO and its international sequencing networks continuously monitor SARS-CoV-2 mutations and inform countries about any changes that may be needed to respond to the variant, and prevent its spread where feasible.
- The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues to spread worldwide (WHO 2020). Understanding severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) shedding, transmission dynamics, and re-infection with different SARS-CoV-2 clades in immunocompromised persons is an important clinical and public health challenge (Choi et al., 2020).
- With the ongoing coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) pandemic, an increasing number of immunocompromised patients are becoming infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) worldwide, including solid organ transplant recipients (Elias et al., 2020). Immunocompromised patients may have prolonged viral shedding and thus may be unrecognized sources of SARS-CoV-2 transmission (Baang et al., 2021). It has been reported that critically ill patients have positive infectious SARS-CoV-2 cultures for 20 days, while those with mild disease have positive viral cultures for 8–10 days post infection (van Kampen et al., 2021; Wölfel et al., 2020).