New findings by Norwegian researchers show that the novel coronavirus could have arrived in Europe a month earlier than previously thought, Russia's Sputnik news agency reported Wednesday.
Researchers at Akershus University Hospital found antibodies against COVID-19 in blood samples from as early as December 2019. The antibodies were detected in 98 of the 6,520 samples that were analyzed.
The researchers described the results as valid yet very surprising, adding that "the discovery changes the story of the corona epidemic."
The report looked into several other cases, namely an Italian study in Milan that indicates the coronavirus was present in Italy in 2019, and a U.S. study with similar results.
The study by University of California San Diego School of Medicine concluded that the COVID-19 virus was likely "circulating undetected" two months before December 2019.