Chinese researchers suggest small animal pangolins could be the source of coronavirus outbreak due to which more than 30,000 people are affected worldwide.
It is learned the suggestion is based on genetic analysis and a detailed report will soon be published.
Evolutionary virologist at the University of Sydney, Australia, Edward Holmes, said the observation is interesting and more need to be worked on.
According to South China Agricultural University in Guangzhou, its two researchers, Shen Yongyi and Xiao Lihua, found in their research the pangolins are potential source of coronavirus.
Earlier the researchers had found the same virus as a possible cause of death of pangolins.
A computational virologist at the University of Glasgow, UK, David Robertson, said the pangolins were an intermediate species for coronavirus.
Pangolins are small protected animals and some species of it are critically endangered. Illegal trafficking of pangolins is in widespread for their meat, scales and traditional Chinese medicine.
The Chinese law states that a person selling the animal can be sent to prison for about 10 years.