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Contamination of surfaces in homes of adults with natural rhinovirus colds and transfer to fingertips during normal daily activities.

Nasal secretions from 30 subjects with common colds were collected. Each subject identified 10 sites in their home which they had touched during the preceding 18 hours. Nasal secretions from 16 (of 30) subjects were positive for rhinovirus by RT-PCR and 67 (42%) of 160 surfaces in homes were positive for rhinovirus by RT-PCR. Surfaces most frequently contaminated were doorknobs (6 positive/18 tested), refrigerator door handles (8/14), TV remote controls (5/10), and bathroom faucets (8/10). Five (19%) of 26 RT-PCR positive sites from culture positive subjects were positive in cell culture. Nasal mucous from six subjects with infectivity titers of 10 to 10 (TCID)50/0.1 ml was deposited on objects. In a further experiment, each subject’s own mucous was deposited on surfaces to test transfer to fingertips through daily life activities (DLA) (flipping a light switch off, touching a telephone keypad, holding the telephone handset). Infectious rhinovirus was detected on 23.5% of fingertips following contact with objects which had been contaminated for 1 hour; transfer dropped to 4% from objects contaminated 24 hours previously and 0% after 48 hours. Detection of rhinovirus genome on fingertips following DLA was 89%, 69% and 53% at 1 hour, 24 and 48 hours after contamination, respectively. Poster presented at a joint meeting of ICAAC/IDSA, 2008. Washington DC. Poster no. V4159.

Author: Winther B, McCue K, Rubino J, Hendley JO

Published: 01/01/2008

Publication Type: Journal article

Publisher: ICAAC/IDSA