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Far-UVC light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases.

Far-UVC light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases.
Author Information (click to view)

Welch D, Buonanno M, Grilj V, Shuryak I, Crickmore C, Bigelow AW, Randers-Pehrson G, Johnson GW, Brenner DJ,


Welch D, Buonanno M, Grilj V, Shuryak I, Crickmore C, Bigelow AW, Randers-Pehrson G, Johnson GW, Brenner DJ, (click to view)

Welch D, Buonanno M, Grilj V, Shuryak I, Crickmore C, Bigelow AW, Randers-Pehrson G, Johnson GW, Brenner DJ,

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Scientific reports 2018 02 098(1) 2752 doi 10.1038/s41598-018-21058-w
Abstract

Airborne-mediated microbial diseases such as influenza and tuberculosis represent major public health challenges. A direct approach to prevent airborne transmission is inactivation of airborne pathogens, and the airborne antimicrobial potential of UVC ultraviolet light has long been established; however, its widespread use in public settings is limited because conventional UVC light sources are both carcinogenic and cataractogenic. By contrast, we have previously shown that far-UVC light (207-222 nm) efficiently inactivates bacteria without harm to exposed mammalian skin. This is because, due to its strong absorbance in biological materials, far-UVC light cannot penetrate even the outer (non living) layers of human skin or eye; however, because bacteria and viruses are of micrometer or smaller dimensions, far-UVC can penetrate and inactivate them. We show for the first time that far-UVC efficiently inactivates airborne aerosolized viruses, with a very low dose of 2 mJ/cm2 of 222-nm light inactivating >95% of aerosolized H1N1 influenza virus. Continuous very low dose-rate far-UVC light in indoor public locations is a promising, safe and inexpensive tool to reduce the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases.

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