Multiple SARS-CoV-2 introductions shaped the early outbreak in Central Eastern Europe: comparing Hungarian data to a worldwide sequence data-matrix

G Kemenesi, S Zeghbib, B Somogyi, G Tóth, K Bányai, N Solymosi, P Szabó, I Szabó, Á Bálint, P Urbán, R Herczeg, A Gyenesei, Á Nagy, C Pereszlényi, G Babinszky, G Dudás, G Terhes, V Zöldi, R Lovas, S Tenczer, L Kornya, F Jakab

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Received date: 6th May 2020

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 is the third highly pathogenic human coronavirus in history. Since the emergence in Hubei province, China, during late 2019 the situation evolved to pandemic level. Following China, Europe was the second epicenter of the pandemic. To better comprehend the detailed founder mechanisms of the epidemic evolution in Central-Eastern Europe, particularly in Hungary, we determined the full-length SARS-CoV-2 genomes from 32 clinical samples collected from laboratory confirmed COVID-19 patients over the first month of disease in Hungary. We applied a haplotype network analysis on all available complete genomic sequences of SARS-CoV-2 from GISAID database as of the 21th of April, 2020. We performed additional phylogenetic and phylogeographic analyses to achieve the recognition of multiple and parallel introductory events into our region. Here we present a publicly available network imaging of the worldwide haplotype relations of SARS-CoV-2 sequences and conclude the founder mechanisms of the outbreak in Central-Eastern Europe.

Read in full at bioRxiv.

This is an abstract of a preprint hosted on a preprint server, which is currently undergoing peer review at Scientific Reports. The findings have yet to be thoroughly evaluated, nor has a decision on ultimate publication been made. Therefore, the results reported should not be considered conclusive, and these findings should not be used to inform clinical practice, or public health policy, or be promoted as verified information.

Scientific Reports

Nature Research, Springer Nature