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Environ Sci Technol. 2012 Dec 18;46(24):13303-10. doi: 10.1021/es3032105. Epub 2012 Dec 3.

Temperature and humidity influences on inactivation kinetics of enteric viruses on surfaces.

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Department of Environmental Health, Graduate School of Public Health, Seoul National University, 1 Gwanak-ro, Gwanak-gu, Seoul 151-742, South Korea.


Norovirus (NoV) and hepatitis A virus (HAV) are pathogenic enteric viruses responsible for public health concerns worldwide. The viral transmission occurs through fecally contaminated food, water, fomites, or direct contact. However, the difficulty in cultivating these viruses makes it a challenge to characterize the resistance to various environmental stresses. In this study, we characterized the inactivation rates of murine norovirus (MNV), MS2, and HAV on either lacquer coating rubber tree wood or stainless steel under different temperature and relative humidity (RH) conditions. The viruses were analyzed at temperatures of 15 °C, 25 °C, 32 °C, and 40 °C and at RHs of 30%, 50%, and 70% for 30 days. Overall, they survived significantly longer on wood than on steel at lower temperature (P < 0.05). The inactivation rate of MS2 and MNV increased at higher RH levels, whereas HAV survived the best at a medium RH level (50%). The effect of RH was significant only for MS2 (P < 0.05). MS2 persisted longest under all of the environmental conditions examined. Both a linear and a nonlinear Weibull model were used to describe the viral inactivation data in this study. The data produced a better fit to the survival curves that were predicted by the Weibull model.

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