Animation of numerous coronavirus particles in the air. This is the virus that causes the new Wuhan coronavirus disease, first detected in December 2019. It causes respiratory disease that can lead to fatal pneumonia. The disease is officially called COVID-2019, and the virus named SARS-CoV-2, due to its similarities to the 2003 SARS virus. It spreads in aerosols of water in the air, exhaled by infected people.