One in ten people may still have a viral load capable of transmitting the coronavirus ten days after initial diagnosis, according to a small British scientific study.
Researchers at the University of Exeter, led by Lorna Harris School of Medicine professor and published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, used a test that can detect if the virus is still potentially active. They analyzed samples from 176 people who had previously been positive for molecular PCR.
It was found that ten days after the positive test, 13% of people still had coronavirus levels in their body, which could be contagious. In fact, some people maintained such levels for up to 68 days, but this does not necessarily mean that they were contagious throughout this period.
"Although this is a relatively small study, our findings show that a potentially active virus can sometimes persist beyond the ten-day period and thus potentially pose a risk of continued transmission. "In addition, nothing clinically significant was found in these people, which means we could not predict who they were," said Dr. Harris.
PCR tests, which detect the presence of the coronavirus, and can tell if someone has recently been infected, are unable to tell if the virus is still active and therefore possibly capable of being transmitted. The test used by the British researchers gives a positive result only when it detects an active virus.
"People who continue to be contagious after ten days can pose a serious risk to public health," said researcher Marilyn Davis.
See link for scientific publication HERE