China investigates respiratory illness outbreak sickening 27

Chinese experts are investigating an outbreak of respiratory illness that some have likened to the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic

BEIJING -- Chinese experts are investigating an outbreak of respiratory illness in the central city of Wuhan that some have likened to the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic.

It said most had visited a seafood market in the sprawling city, apparently pointing to a common origin of the outbreak.

Unverified information online said the illnesses were caused by Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, which emerged from southern China and killed more than 700 people in several countries and regions. SARS was brought under control through quarantines and other extreme measures, but not before causing a virtual shutdown to travel in China and the region and taking a severe toll on the economy.