COVID-19: Probable involvement of insects in the mechanical transmission of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

Document Type : Mini-review article


1 Department of Science Laboratory Technology, Nasarawa State Polytechnic, Lafia, Nigeria.

2 Department of Microbiology, Nasarawa State University, Keffi, Nigeria

3 Department of Microbiology, Plateau State University, Bokkos, Nigeria


Currently, the world is faced with a novel human coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic caused by a zoonotic, enveloped, single-stranded RNA novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) causing severe human respiratory tract infections. Although severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and other related coronaviruses had been reported to be mechanically transmitted by insects, no report has so far linked the human transmission of 2019-nCoV with insects. However, the survivability of 2019-nCoV on surfaces and faeces for elongated periods would undoubtedly incriminate insects as culprits in its transmission.
Once the faecal-oral transmission of 2019-nCoV is scientifically proven and established, the fate of insects as mechanical vectors in the transmission of this novel coronavirus would most likely constitute significant public health danger. The urgency for the prevention of the rapid and increasing global transmission of 2019-nCoV requires a holistic and multifaceted universal approach aimed at improving infection prevention and control, hygienic and sanitary measures hence, mitigating the likely culpability of insects in transmitting the novel coronavirus.


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