[Comment] The COVID‑19 pandemic as a scientific and social challenge in the 21st century
- Vassilios Zoumpourlis
- Maria Goulielmaki
- Emmanouil Rizos
- Stella Baliou
- Demetrios A. Spandidos
Affiliations: Biomedical Applications Unit, Institute of Chemical Biology, National Hellenic Research Foundation (NHRF), 11635 Athens, Greece, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Medical School, 2nd Department of Psychiatry, University ‘ATTIKON’ General Hospital, 12462 Athens, Greece, Laboratory of Clinical Virology, Medical School, University of Crete, 71003 Heraklion, Greece
- Published online on: July 30, 2020 https://doi.org/10.3892/mmr.2020.11393
Copyright: © Zoumpourlis
et al. This is an open access article distributed under the
terms of Creative
Commons Attribution License.
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The coronavirus disease‑2019 (COVID‑19) pandemic, caused by the new coronavirus SARS‑CoV‑2, has spread around the globe with unprecedented consequences for the health of millions of people. While the pandemic is still in progress, with new incidents being reported every day, the resilience of the global society is constantly being challenged. Under these circumstances, the future seems uncertain. SARS‑CoV‑2 coronavirus has spread panic among civilians and insecurity at all socio‑political and economic levels, dramatically disrupting everyday life, global economy, international travel and trade. The disease has also been linked to the onset of depression in many individuals due to the extreme restriction measures that have been taken for the prevention of the rapid spreading of COVID‑19. First, the socio‑economic, political and psychological implications of the COVID‑19 pandemic were explored. Substantial evidence is provided for the consequences of the pandemic on all aspects of everyday life, while at the same time we unravel the role and the pursuits of national regimes during this unforeseen situation. The second goal of this review is related to the scientific aspect of the pandemic. Hence, we explain why SARS‑CoV‑2 is not a so‑called ‘invisible enemy’, and also attempt to give insight regarding the origin of the virus, in an effort to reject the conspiracy theories that have arisen during the pandemic. Finally, rational strategies were investigated for successful vaccine development. We are optimistic that this review will complement the knowledge of specialized scientists and inform non‑specialized readers on basic scientific questions, and also on the social and economic implications of the COVID‑19 pandemic.