Animal models for COVID-19
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the etiological agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), an emerging respiratory infection caused by introduction of a novel coronavirus into humans in late 2019 in China's Hubei province. As of September 11, 2020, SARS-CoV-2 has spread to 215 countries, has infected more than 28 million people, and has caused more than 910,000 deaths. Since humans do not have pre-existing immunity against SARS-CoV-2, there is an urgent need to develop therapeutics and vaccines to mitigate the current pandemic and to prevent the re-emergence of COVID-19 in the future. In February 2020 the World Health Organization (WHO) assembled an international panel of experts to develop animal models for COVID-19 to accelerate testing of vaccines and therapeutics. This review summarizes the findings to date and provides relevant information for preclinical testing of COVID-19 vaccine candidates and therapeutics.