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Revista Cubana de Pediatría

versión impresa ISSN 0034-7531versión On-line ISSN 1561-3119


DENIS RODRIGUEZ, Marisleidy  y  LUIS LEON, Ceylin. Similarities and differences among COVID-19 and the severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by SARS-CoV. Rev Cubana Pediatr [online]. 2020, vol.92, suppl.1, e1223.  Epub 30-Nov-2020. ISSN 0034-7531.


In the years 2003, 2012 and 2019 have happened epidemic events characterized with a high population morbidity and mortality and originated by three new Beta-CoV called: SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 (this last one shares with SARS-CoV an identity of 82% in its gene sequence) which cause the severe acute respiratory syndrome, the Middle East respiratory syndrome and COVID-19, respectively.


To assess the main similarities and differences among COVID-19 and the severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by SARS-CoV.


It was carried out the search in Medline, Scielo and Google Scholar databases. The requirements used were that the articles were in English or Spanish language and the keywords were: infections by coronavirus, COVID-19, SARS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2.


An important similarity among both conditions is that they have the same transmission way and incubation period; however, lethality in the SARS doubled the COVID-19 one. There are structural differences among SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2 but both are fixed to the recipient of the angiostensina 2 converter´s enzyme. Clinical manifestations and complementary exams are similar but there are differences related to the onset of respiratory symptoms, their frequence and the order of appareance.

Final considerations:

There are similarities among the diseases caused by SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2; but also there are differences in their epidemiological, clinical and laboratory characteristics that can allow to do a differencial diagnosis and to guarantee an adequate treatment and follow-up in specific situations.

Palabras clave : Infections by coronavirus; COVID-19; SAR-CoV; SARS-CoV-2.

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