A study released March 17 by the New England Journal of Medicine looked at the “aerosol and surface stability of SARS-CoV-2 as compared with SARS-CoV-1.”

In an accompanying letter to the journal’s editor, the authors submitting the findings noted that the new virus the world is currently facing is called Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) coronavirus 2 (CoV-2).  

SARS-CoV-1, the letter stated, is “the most closely related human coronavirus.” 

In the study, the authors said they evaluated the stability of both strains “in aerosols and on various surfaces,” to estimate their “decay rates,” using a methodology called “a Bayesian model.” 

To make determinations, they wrote, the “data consisted of 10 experimental conditions” involving the two identified viruses “in five environmental conditions.” They are: aerosols, plastic, stainless steel, copper and cardboard. 

In aerosols, they wrote, CoV-2 (COVID-19) remained viable throughout the duration of the three-hour experiment. 

Looking at surfaces, they wrote, COVID-19 was “more stable on plastic and stainless steel than on copper and cardboard,” with viable virus detected up to 72 hours after application to those surfaces. 

The full letter, accompanying analytics and report are here:


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