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1.
[Unspecified Source]; 2020.
Preprint in English | [Unspecified Source] | ID: ppcovidwho-292763

ABSTRACT

Decontamination of objects and surfaces can limit transmission of infectious agents via fomites or biological samples. It is required for the safe re-use of potentially contaminated personal protective equipment and medical and laboratory equipment. Heat treatment is widely used for the inactivation of various infectious agents, notably viruses. We show that for liquid specimens (here suspension of SARS-CoV-2 in cell culture medium), virus inactivation rate under heat treatment at 70°C can vary by almost two orders of magnitude depending on the treatment procedure, from a half-life of 0.86 min (95% credible interval: [0.09, 1.77]) in closed vials in a heat block to 37.0 min ([12.65, 869.82]) in uncovered plates in a dry oven. These findings suggest a critical role of evaporation in virus inactivation using dry heat. Placing samples in open or uncovered containers may dramatically reduce the speed and efficacy of heat treatment for virus inactivation. Heating procedures must be carefully specified when reporting experimental studies to facilitate result interpretation and reproducibility, and carefully considered when designing decontamination guidelines.

3.
Elife ; 102021 07 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389776

ABSTRACT

Ambient temperature and humidity strongly affect inactivation rates of enveloped viruses, but a mechanistic, quantitative theory of these effects has been elusive. We measure the stability of SARS-CoV-2 on an inert surface at nine temperature and humidity conditions and develop a mechanistic model to explain and predict how temperature and humidity alter virus inactivation. We find SARS-CoV-2 survives longest at low temperatures and extreme relative humidities (RH); median estimated virus half-life is >24 hr at 10°C and 40% RH, but ∼1.5 hr at 27°C and 65% RH. Our mechanistic model uses fundamental chemistry to explain why inactivation rate increases with increased temperature and shows a U-shaped dependence on RH. The model accurately predicts existing measurements of five different human coronaviruses, suggesting that shared mechanisms may affect stability for many viruses. The results indicate scenarios of high transmission risk, point to mitigation strategies, and advance the mechanistic study of virus transmission.


Subject(s)
Hot Temperature , Humidity , Models, Biological , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Virus Inactivation , COVID-19 , Humans
4.
Appl Environ Microbiol ; 87(19): e0031421, 2021 09 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319372

ABSTRACT

Decontamination helps limit environmental transmission of infectious agents. It is required for the safe reuse of contaminated medical, laboratory, and personal protective equipment, and for the safe handling of biological samples. Heat treatment is a common decontamination method, notably used for viruses. We show that for liquid specimens (here, solution of SARS-CoV-2 in cell culture medium), the virus inactivation rate under heat treatment at 70°C can vary by almost two orders of magnitude depending on the treatment procedure, from a half-life of 0.86 min (95% credible interval [CI] 0.09, 1.77) in closed vials in a heat block to 37.04 min (95% CI 12.64, 869.82) in uncovered plates in a dry oven. These findings suggest a critical role of evaporation in virus inactivation via dry heat. Placing samples in open or uncovered containers may dramatically reduce the speed and efficacy of heat treatment for virus inactivation. Given these findings, we reviewed the literature on temperature-dependent coronavirus stability and found that specimen container types, along with whether they are closed, covered, or uncovered, are rarely reported in the scientific literature. Heat-treatment procedures must be fully specified when reporting experimental studies to facilitate result interpretation and reproducibility, and must be carefully considered when developing decontamination guidelines. IMPORTANCE Heat is a powerful weapon against most infectious agents. It is widely used for decontamination of medical, laboratory, and personal protective equipment, and for biological samples. There are many methods of heat treatment, and methodological details can affect speed and efficacy of decontamination. We applied four different heat-treatment procedures to liquid specimens containing SARS-CoV-2. Our results show that the container used to store specimens during decontamination can substantially affect inactivation rate; for a given initial level of contamination, decontamination time can vary from a few minutes in closed vials to several hours in uncovered plates. Reviewing the literature, we found that container choices and heat treatment methods are only rarely reported explicitly in methods sections. Our study shows that careful consideration of heat-treatment procedure-in particular the choice of specimen container and whether it is covered-can make results more consistent across studies, improve decontamination practice, and provide insight into the mechanisms of virus inactivation.


Subject(s)
Decontamination/methods , Hot Temperature , Personal Protective Equipment/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Specimen Handling/methods , Virus Inactivation , Decontamination/instrumentation , Reproducibility of Results , Specimen Handling/instrumentation
5.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 26(9)2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-505770

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus pandemic has created worldwide shortages of N95 respirators. We analyzed 4 decontamination methods for effectiveness in deactivating severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 virus and effect on respirator function. Our results indicate that N95 respirators can be decontaminated and reused, but the integrity of respirator fit and seal must be maintained.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Decontamination/methods , Equipment Reuse , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Ventilators, Mechanical/virology , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Humans , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2
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