MERS entry in progress

David K. Barnhart dbarnhart at HIGHLANDS.COM
Fri May 31 15:28:44 UTC 2013

MERS, muhrz /mərz/, n. {w}  Acronym for Middle East(ern) Respiratory Syndrome, a spherical RNA virus with many minute projections which suggest the solar corona, and which may cause severe respiratory distress similar to SARS in humans.  Also called Mers-CoV.  Sometimes called Arabian coronavirus or Middle East Coronavirus or Saudi Coronavirus.  Compare H7N9.  Standard (used in contexts dealing especially with medicine; frequent?)


A detailed look at two cases of a deadly new respiratory virus called MERS suggests people who have the disease should be isolated for at least 12 days to avoid spreading it, doctors reported Wednesday.  Maria Cheng, “To stop MERS, longer quarantines may be necessary,” USA Today (Google News), May 29, 2013,


Some aspects of the new viruses are scary.  The Arabian coronavirus—now officially name MERS, for Middle East respiratory syndrme—has killed about half of those it infects, while SARS killed less than a quarter; ... Donald G. McNeil, Jr., “New Tools to Hunt New Viruses,” The New York Times, May 28, 2012, p D1


To date, the WHO has been notified of 41 confirmed infections with the virus, which has been recently named MERS, for Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome coronavirus. Of those cases, 20 have been fatal.

The bulk of the infections have occurred in Saudi Arabia...  “WHO warns Saudi coronavirus may be spreading from person to person,” Postmedia Breaking News (Nexis), May 18, 2013, p not given 


In a move that may end more than 7 months of confusion, an international group of scientists and public health officials will soon recommend that the new virus be called Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).  Martin Enserink, “International Group Settles on Name for New Coronavirus,” Science (Google News), May 6, 2013, p not given



2013.  Shortening (abbreviation; acronym): formed from M(iddle )E(astern )R(espiratory )S(yndrome)-Co(rona)V(irus),  .......  Compare SARS and severe acute respiratory syndrome).


The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list