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Advances in Virology
Volume 2014, Article ID 859090, 6 pages
Review Article

Influenza Virus Aerosols in the Air and Their Infectiousness

Department of Virology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, 1/12 Leninskie Gory, Moscow 119234, Russia

Received 21 May 2014; Revised 11 July 2014; Accepted 25 July 2014; Published 13 August 2014

Academic Editor: Stefan Pöhlmann

Copyright © 2014 Nikolai Nikitin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Influenza is one of the most contagious and rapidly spreading infectious diseases and an important global cause of hospital admissions and mortality. There are some amounts of the virus in the air constantly. These amounts is generally not enough to cause disease in people, due to infection prevention by healthy immune systems. However, at a higher concentration of the airborne virus, the risk of human infection increases dramatically. Early detection of the threshold virus concentration is essential for prevention of the spread of influenza infection. This review discusses different approaches for measuring the amount of influenza A virus particles in the air and assessing their infectiousness. Here we also discuss the data describing the relationship between the influenza virus subtypes and virus air transmission, and distribution of viral particles in aerosol drops of different sizes.