I picked up this link at the Arabic #Corona hashtag; it led me to the International Journal of Infectious Diseases and this article: Community Case Clusters of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus in Hafr Al-Batin, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: A Descriptive Genomic study. Dr. Ziad A. Memish is the leader author. The summary:
The Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first described in September 2012 and had caused a total of 191 cases of MERS-CoV infection with 82 deaths. Camels have been implicated as the reservoir of MERS-CoV, but the exact source and mode of transmission for most patients remain unknown.
During a 3 month period, June to August 2013, there were 12 positive MERS-CoV cases reported from the Hafr Al-Batin district in the north east region of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In addition to the different regional camel festivals in neighboring countries, Hafr Al-Batin has the biggest camel market in the entire Kingdom and host an annual camel festival. Thus, we conducted a detailed epidemiological, clinical and genomic study to ascertain common exposure and transmission patterns of all cases of MERS-CoV reported from Hafr Al-Batin.
The genetic data indicated that at least two of the infected contacts could not have been directly infected from the index patient and alternate source should be considered. Camels appear as the likely source but other animals have not been ruled out.
More detailed case control studies with detailed case histories, epidemiological information and genomic analysis are being conducted to delineate the missing pieces in the transmission dynamics of MERS-CoV outbreak.