According to a statement issued by the Japanese Health Ministry, cited by Reuters, the man, in his 30s, had been to the Chinese city of Wuhan, where there has been an outbreak of pneumonia believed to be caused by the new coronavirus strain.
Earlier, authorities of the Wuhan city in the central Chinese province of Hubei admitted that human-to-human transmission of the newly registered type of coronavirus is a possibility although there is no direct evidence currently available.
Among 41 confirmed cases, there are members of the same family: a husband who worked at a local seafood market — the suspected hotbed of the virus — and a wife who claimed she had not visited the market.
The unknown kind of viral pneumonia was reported from Wuhan in early January. Infected individuals reportedly display symptoms typical of pneumonia and other acute respiratory diseases, prompting fears on the web that the nation might be experiencing a return of SARS, an epidemic that killed over 600 in China throughout 2002-2003.
Last week, the disease was confirmed to be a new type of coronavirus. On Saturday, China confirmed the first lethal case in Wuhan. The WHO has reportedly warned hospitals worldwide about a potential spread of the highly-contagious virus.