The history of coronaviruses as human pathogens dates back to the mid-1960s, when they were first isolated from respiratory tract samples extracted from adults with symptoms of the common cold. Currently, seven types of coronavirus are known to infect humans.
Knowing the detailed genomes of viruses and their phylogenies allows us to understand the origin of the outbreak. Was it a zoonosis from bats or were other hosts involved? Where did this fatal transition occur? What is the rate of change of the virus?