New research revealed that coronavirus can remain infectious on surfaces such as banknotes, phone screens, etc. for 28 days.
A recent study fromAustralia’s national science agency suggests SARS-Cov-2 can survive for far longer than thought.
Previous studies found that the virus can survive for two to three days on banknotes, glass, etc. However, new research from Australian agency CSIRO found the virus was “extremely robust,” surviving for 28 days on smooth surfaces such as mobile phone screens and paper banknotes when kept at 20C (68F), which is about room temperature, and in the dark.
On the other hand, the normal flu can remain for 17 days in the same circumstances.
The experiment was done in the dark. The study was published in the Virology Journal.
The study also revealed that SARS-Cov-2 survived for less time at hotter temperatures than cooler temperatures. The virus stopped being active within 24 hours at 40C on surfaces.
However, the study received criticism. Prof Ron Eccles, former director of Common Cold Centre at Cardiff University, has argued that the suggestion that the virus could survive for 28 days was causing “unnecessary fear in the public”.
“Viruses are spread on surfaces from mucus in coughs and sneezes and dirty fingers and this study did not use fresh human mucus as a vehicle to spread the virus,” he said.
“Fresh mucus is a hostile environment for viruses as it contains lots of white cells that produce enzymes to destroy viruses and can also contain antibodies and other chemicals to neutralize viruses.
“In my opinion infectious viruses will only persist for hours in mucus on surfaces rather than days.”