Crossing the Species Barrier: A Closer Look at the Distant Relatives of SARS-CoV-2

Twenty years ago, SARS coronavirus crossed the species barrier from wild animals to humans, effectively demonstrating a new threat to global health. Since then, scientists have discovered hundreds of related “sarbecoviruses” – a specific type of coronavirus – circulating in Asia, Africa, and Europe. SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, is now the second known sarbecovirus known to cause disease in humans – but will it be the last?

Here, Dr. Michael Letko, a virologist from Washington State University’s Paul G. Allen School for Global Animal Health, will lead us through a brief history of coronavirus species-jumps, the current limitations in our ability to predict the next jump, and how his lab is working to change that. Tune in to explore coronaviruses at the molecular level, learn how a single coronavirus particle invades host cells, and see if other sarbecoviruses can cross the species barrier. Along the way, you will gain a deeper understanding on the origins of sarbecoviruses, including SARS-CoV-2, and the global research efforts to discover coronaviruses and the species that carry them.

Livestream Information

This event will be livestreamed through PacSci’s YouTube channel at 7 p.m.:

Cost: Free / Suggested donation, $10

Recommended Ages: All Ages

Members receive program and event discounts and free admission. Become a PacSci Member.

September 8th Science in the City Registration

Registration for this event will close at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept 8th.

This event has a suggested donation of $10, but feel free to donate at any amount you are comfortable with!


Payment Fields

What’s Happening e-Newsletter Sign-Up

The event is finished.


September 8, 2020


7:00 pm - 8:00 pm


Free / Suggested donation, $10


Livestream with PacSci