As I write these lines, I am sitting in my home office - like practically all colleagues from "Spektrum der Wissenschaft". When we can next meet in person is not yet clear at this point in time. Of course, the global spread of the newly described coronavirus Sars-CoV-2 and the associated disease called Covid-19 also affects us and our work and presents us with completely new challenges.
We have to reorganize and sometimes use completely new channels in order to be able to continue producing your magazine. I therefore ask for your understanding if, in spite of our best efforts, we do not achieve the high quality that you are used to from us and that we would like to deliver to you.
Science is making new discoveries just as quickly as the virus is spreading. Studies are published every day that describe the genome of the pathogen, what diseases it causes or where it comes from. One hypothesis is that Sars-CoV-2 originally occurred in bats and from there may have spread to us humans via pangolins at a wildlife market. Virologist Shi Zhengli has been studying coronaviruses in bats for decades and warns that Sars-CoV-2 will not be the last coronavirus to change hosts. You can read a portrait of the scientist and her work starting on page 32.
Another article in the issue is dedicated to the modeling of epidemics (p. 74): Especially with such a worldwide outbreak, it is important to be able to predict as well as possible how events will develop. Covid-19 is a global challenge that we can only overcome with the full commitment of science.
Stay he althy!