Timeline for Creation of the Center for Emerging Viruses. 

This is a look back on the timeline of the COVID-19 global pandemic, and several highlighted research articles and discoveries that sparked the creation of the Center for Coronavirus Research (CCR) at the University of Minnesota.

September 2005 - Science paper, “Structure of SARS coronavirus spike receptor-binding domain complexed with receptor,” opens a new era of structural biology of coronaviruses.

September 2016 - Annual Review of Virology paper, "Structure, function, and evolution of coronavirus spike proteins", provides comprehensive reviews of cell entry mechanisms of coronaviruses. This is the all-time most cited paper for Annual Review of Virology.

January 2020 - The first human cases of SARS-CoV-2, commonly known as COVID-19, are detected in Wuhan China.

January 2020 - Journal of Virology paper, "Receptor recognition by the novel coronavirus from Wuhan: an analysis based on decade-long structural studies of SARS coronavirus", not only identifies the receptor for SARS-CoV-2 but also provides predictive insights into the virus's molecular mechanisms and animal origins. It has guided and influenced the global research efforts on COVID-19 and has become the most cited paper in the history of the Journal of Virology.

March 2020 - The worldwide spread of COVID-19 results in WHO declaring a Global Pandemic.

March 2020 - Nature paper, "Structural basis of receptor recognition by SARS-CoV-2", lays the structural framework for vaccine design and drug development against SARS-CoV-2.

April 2020 - UMN infectious disease experts, microbiologists, immunologists and other scientists join the global fight against COVID-19.

April 2020 - The Center for Coronavirus Research (CCR) is established.

April 2020 – COVID-19 antibody test is developed for state testing.

May 2020 - PNAS paper, "Cell entry mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2", identifies key molecular mechanisms of the COVID-19 pandemic. This is the one of the most cited papers for PNAS.

August 2021 - Nanosota-1 is discovered from the llama immune system as a novel COVID-19 nanobody drug candidate.

September 2021 - A virus-like nanoparticle vaccine is developed as a novel COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

November 2021 - The omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 starts spreading rapidly across the globe.

March 2022 - Nature Communications paper, "Cryo-EM structure of a SARS-CoV-2 omicron spike protein ectodomain", reveals why omicron is so effective in infecting people, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, and suggests ways to curb its spread.

May 2022 - Midwest Antiviral Drug Discovery (AViDD) Center is established.

October 2022 - PNAS paper, "Structural basis for mouse receptor recognition by SARS-CoV-2 omicron variant", reveals mouse-specific mutations in the omicron variant, providing evidence for possible animal origin of omicron.

April 2024 - Center for Coronavirus Research transitions to Center for Emerging Viruses, expanding its focus to include emerging viruses of concern such as Ebola, Flu and RSV.