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Coronavirus death toll passes 100, a grim milestone

The new coronavirus emerged in China and has since sickened thousands and been identified in the US and Europe.

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The coronavirus was detected just weeks before the busy Chinese Lunar New Year.

Betsy Joles/Getty

A deadly pneumonia-like illness that has raised the specter of an international health emergency has now claimed at least 106 lives. Most of the deaths have occurred in the mainland China province of Hubei where the virus originated. 

The death toll comes from China Global Television Network, a state-run media organization that has been following the situation closely. So far, all deaths have been recorded in China.  

The novel coronavirus first appeared in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019. Its rapid spread led to transportation shutdowns across entire cities and health screenings for travelers from China. Infected patients have since been detected in Thailand, Europe, Australia, Japan, South Korea and the US, among other countries.

The new virus, now known as 2019-nCoV, is part of a family of coronaviruses that includes SARS, which killed hundreds in 2003.

Scientists are still working to understand the origin and transmission of the virus and to develop effective treatment methods. 

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First published Jan. 27 at 5:34 p.m. PT.
Update, 8:35 a.m. PT on Jan. 28: Adds latest number of cases and deaths.