When a person is infected with a virus, the virus multiplies in the body and can be released into the environment through sneezing, coughing or even speaking. This release is called "shedding" and viral shedding is how COVID-19 is spread from person to person. How long a person who has COVID-19 will shed virus is still unknown.
On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, discusses viral shedding and why asymptomatic carriers of COVID-19 are a big concern.
This interview was recorded on Aug. 10, 2020. Information in this post was accurate at the time of its posting. Due to the fluid nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, scientific understanding along with guidelines and recommendations may have changed since the original publication date.
More information on COVID-19: https://www.mayoclinic.org/coronavirus-covid-19
Dr. Poland has served as a consultant for Merck & Co. Inc., Medicago Inc., GlaxoSmithKline plc, Sanofi Pasteur, Emergent BioSolutions Inc., Dynavax Technologies Corp., Genentech Inc., Eli Lilly and Co., Kentucky BioProcessing Inc. and Genevant Sciences Corp., and Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. He is a paid scientific adviser for Johnson & Johnson. Honoraria: Elsevier.