Scientists around the world are building up their knowledge about the coronavirus, as they frantically search for a cure and vaccine.

Iran’s confirmed coronavirus cases rose to 304,204 on Friday after an overnight registration of 2,674 new infections, official IRNA news agency reported.

During her daily briefing, Sima Sadat Lari, spokeswoman for Iran’s Ministry of Health and Medical Education, said out of the new cases in the past 24 hours, 1,523 were hospitalized.

The pandemic has so far claimed the lives of 16,766 Iranians, up by 197 in the past 24 hours, she said.

So far, 263,519 have recovered and been discharged from hospitals and 4,021 remain in critical condition.

According to Lari, 2,456,909 lab tests for COVID-19 have been carried out in Iran as of Friday.

Iran’s health official said 26 provinces out of 31 are still in high-risk or on alert condition.

Iran announced its first cases of COVID-19 on Feb. 19.

Iran and China have offered mutual help in combating the COVID-19 pandemic.

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