One person in Oman and three in Saudi Arabia were confirmed to be infected with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus, according to the World Health Organization, and one has died. The new cases bring the total human infections with MERS to 149 and deaths to 63. Three of the people had underlying medical conditions, but none reported animal exposure prior to contracting the illness. One patient did have contact with another MERS patient. The virus, which shares similarities with SARS, is believed to have originated in bats, and MERS has been found widely among dromedary camels in the Middle East.
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