So far we know that COVID-19 can be spread by contact with a contaminated object or by sneezing or coughing, but a scientific study carried out by scientists from the University of Toho, in Japan, suggests a third way of propagation, discovering that the saliva microdrops emitted when starting a simple conversation could remain several minutes in the air, which would be causing the coronavirus to spread much faster.
This investigation, coincides with the work of Italian scientists, who have found COVID-19 microparticles, filtered on contamination, underlining the importance of wearing masks during the whole time that one is in public spaces, in addition to keeping the closed spaces ventilated, these being the primary keys to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Japanese scientists consider that each vez we talk, sneeze or cough, we send two types of particles, some of considerable dimensions and others of micrometric size, the latter being the most resistant to climatic conditions, allowing them to survive and disperse through the air. This mechanism would create a third transmission route called “Droplet infection”.
To verify their hypothesis, the experts, together with the collaboration of the NHK television station, made an experiment to monitor the behavior of saliva droplets, using lasers and a highly sensitive camera, with the ability to detect microscopic particles, up to 0.1 millimeters wide.
First they tested the particles of a sneeze, then they asked two volunteers to start a short distance conversation, the result was the same. While the plarger items fall directly to the ground in less than a minute, droplets of saliva Not only They remain in the air for more than 20 minutes, but also begin to disperse around the room.
Although it is still necessary to determine in what volume of microdroplets the infection can carry, Kazuhiro Tateda, President of the Japanese Association of Infectious diseases and leader of the investigation, ensures that micrometer particles could be transmitting coronaviruses when people are very close to each other.
The summary of the study was shared by the television station itself on YouTube, available with subtitles in English and Spanish, which was rescued by CNN, it is so interesting that it already exceeds 800 thousand views. What is impressive is that this study coincides with research carried out by scientists from the University of Bologna, Italy, who have detected COVID-19 particles in air pollutionand.
The study tries to find out if it is possible that the coronavirus can move for long distances, which would increase the number of infected people. According to Guard The Guardian ’, in this approach, scientists used standard techniques to collect samples of outdoor air pollution at an urban and industrial site in the province of Bergamo and they identified a highly specific gene for Covid-19 in multiple samples.
Both works are preliminary and, without a doubt, more research will have to be done in this regard until conclusive data are available to be endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO), however, the truth is that science continues to advance and if we take Considering that COVID-19 took us by surprise just four months ago, scientists have made relevant discoveries.