Virus shedding and environmental deposition of novel A (H1N1) pandemic influenza virus: interim findings

Killingley B, Greatorex J, Cauchemez S, Enstone J, Curran M, Read R, Lim WS, Hayward A, Nicholson KG, Nguyen-Van-Tam JS
Record ID 32010001173
Authors' recommendations: Despite some limitations caused by the small number of subjects recruited, important observations have been made. The finding that over 30% of infected individuals have infectious virus in their noses for 5 days or more has infection control implications. The evidence for the significance of both contact and bioaerosol routes of transmission, depends upon demonstrating that viable virus is deposited from an infected patient. This has been shown for touched fomites. Virus has been demonstrated by PCR in air samples, but the results of live virus testing are inconclusive. The data generated suggest that contact transmission of pandemic influenza via fomites may be less important than hitherto emphasised, whereas transmission via bioaerosols at short range may be possible, meaning that high-level personal protective equipment (PPE) might be needed by health-care workers when attending patients with pandemic influenza. Further work is being undertaken to consolidate these findings as they have important potential implications for the protection of health-care workers and the formulation of advice to households, nationally and internationally.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2010
URL for published report:
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: England, United Kingdom
MeSH Terms
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype
  • Virus Shedding
Organisation Name: NIHR Health Technology Assessment programme
Contact Address: NIHR Journals Library, National Institute for Health and Care Research, Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre, Alpha House, University of Southampton Science Park, Southampton SO16 7NS, UK
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Copyright: 2010 Queen's Printer and Controller of HMSO
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