Saudi Arabia's Health Ministry says two more patients who contracted a potentially fatal Middle East virus related to SARS have died as the kingdom detected nine new cases of the disease.
The ministry said in a statement on its website late Saturday that one Saudi man died in Riyadh and the other in Jiddah, bringing to 94 the number of people who have died of the disease since September 2012. The nine new cases were detected in Riyadh, Jiddah and Mecca, raising the number of cases to 323.
MERS belongs to the coronavirus family that includes the common cold and SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, which caused some 800 deaths globally in 2003.
There is no vaccine or treatment for MERS. It is still unclear how it is transmitted.