Scientists have analyzed how long coronaviruses live on various surfaces and what antiseptics they are sensitive to.
Scientists from the University of Greifswald and the Ruhr University in Bochum analyzed the results of 22 studies of the resistance of coronaviruses on surfaces and the effects of disinfectants on them. This review is published in Hospital infection log,
Since there is no specific therapy against the new 2019-nCoV coronavirus, its prevention is of particular importance. In the spread of this virus, like all drip infections, unwashed hands and infected surfaces play an important role.
“In hospitals, it can be, for example, door handles, as well as call buttons, bedside tables, bed frames and other items in the immediate vicinity of patients, which are often made of metal or plastic,” explained Günter Kampf, co-author of the review.
The review focuses on other, previously well-studied, coronaviruses: pathogens of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). It was found that these viruses live on average 4-5 days, but at room temperature they can persist on the surface and be dangerous for up to 9 days.
“Low temperatures and high humidity increase their life expectancy even further,” Kampf said.
As tests with various disinfectant solutions have shown, anti-coronaviruses are effective based on ethyl alcohol, hydrogen peroxide and sodium hypochlorite. If these agents are used in appropriate concentrations, they reduce the number of active coronaviruses by several orders of magnitude within one minute (for example, from 1,000,000 to 100 pathogenic particles).
The use of drugs based on other active substances is possible if their effectiveness against enveloped viruses is proved. Such agents can potentially significantly reduce the risk of infection.
Since “various coronaviruses were analyzed, and all results were comparable,” scientists believe that the data obtained can be applied to a new virus.