J Vet Sci

. 2021 Sep;22(5):e72.
doi: 10.4142/jvs.2021.22.e72.
Characterization of bat coronaviruses: a latent global threat

Manxin Fang 1 , Wei Hu 1 , Ben Liu 1 2 3



It has been speculated that bats serve as reservoirs of a huge variety of emerging coronaviruses (CoVs) that have been responsible for severe havoc in human health systems as well as negatively affecting human economic and social systems. A prime example is the currently active severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-CoV2, which presumably originated from bats, demonstrating that the risk of a new outbreak of bat coronavirus is always latent. Therefore, an in-depth investigation to better comprehend bat CoVs has become an important issue within the international community, a group that aims to attenuate the consequences of future outbreaks. In this review, we present a concise introduction to CoVs found in bats and discuss their distribution in Southeast Asia. We also discuss the unique adaptation features in bats that confer the ability to be a potential coronavirus reservoir. In addition, we review the bat coronavirus-linked diseases that have emerged in the last two decades. Finally, we propose key factors helpful in the prediction of a novel coronavirus outbreak and present the most recent methods used to forecast an evolving outbreak.

Keywords: Bats; SARS-CoV2; coronaviruses; dissemination; immune response.