Researchers at the University of Hong Kong studying the characteristics of SARS-COV-2, the coronavirus which causes COVID-19, have claimed that the virus can spread through air particles exhaled by an infected person during normal breathing and talking.
Until now, scientists had said that the coronavirus isn’t an airborne affliction.
In fact, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) had said that the coronavirus can spread in two ways:
First, an infected person releases droplets through a sneeze or cough and a healthy person inhales those contaminated droplets. They had claimed that the virus cannot remain infectious in air for more than 3 hours. Second, the droplets from an infected person contaminated objects or surfaces and a healthy person touches their face after coming in contact with those surfaces.
However, claims of the Hong Kong scientists have now completely contradicted NIAID.
Following the revelations of Chinese researchers, the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) has formally written to the White House urging the policymakers to ensure citizens and frontline health workers undertake necessary precautions to fight the pandemic.
Although the study published by the University of Hong Kong researchers is yet to be peer-reviewed, it offers helpful insights into understanding why SARS-COV-2 is so contagious and spreads even before people start showing any symptoms.
Moreover, NAS’s letter to the Trump administration has also lent credence to the findings suggesting the gravity of the pandemic in the US.
The US is now the epicenter of COVID-19 with nearly 250,000 infected people and 6,100 deaths. As for global statistics of COVID-19, infections have crossed the 1 million mark and deaths have reached 54,500.
Via: Science News
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