Two Canadian teams of scientists isolate coronavirus to speed research effort

March 15, 2020
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Ivan Semeniuk, The Globe and Mail

Two teams of Canadian scientists have isolated the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and successfully reproduced it in the laboratory.

The accomplishment means that researchers who are looking to test screening methods, therapies and vaccines now have Canadian sources that can provide access to the global pathogen without them having to undertake the complicating step of shipping live virus across international borders.

“The significance for us is that it serves as a tool," said Samira Mubareka, a microbiologist at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto and member of one of the teams. “Now that we have this virus in hand it means that we have material for a number of things."

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