how long can a virus survive outside the body?

just a quick question

Depends on the virus. IANAV (virologist), but was told by an AIDS researcher once that HIV could survive for a relatively short time (on the order of an hour) while the herpes virus (or maybe hepatitis, it’s been awhile) could survive for a day or two outside its host.

So, what virus did you have in mind?

What he said, depends on the virus. There have been viral distillations sitting in vials in crystalline form for several decades that are still infective. In contrast others become denatured almot immediately on removal from water.

Again, depends on the virus.

The rule of thumb is if the virus is enveloped(has a plasma membrane around its capsid) then it will last about a day without water. If the virus only has a capsid then it can last much much longer.

If you’re wondering what the evolutionary advantage of an envelope is, I believe it is because it can penetrate a cell much easier.

i cut my finger at work today, dont think i got any viruses, but i was just wonderin how dangerous that napkin i was usin was and also if its safe to be pickin up trash for a livin HA

not very unless someone spilled their blood on it earlier.

People who pick up trash wear gloves!

Hepatitis B can survive outside the body for more than a week. That’s the longest I’ve heard of.

From the CDC

The canine parvovirus is extremely hardy and can continue to be infective for about 6 or 7 months in the environment. Even freezing temperatures won’t kill it.

How about smallpox?

Agree. That time line stretches even longer if there is significant organic material present. Feline leukemia virus OTOH dies as soon as any moisture around it dries. The rhabdovirus that causes rabies has been recovered alive from deep below packed snow, it loves cold environs.