Listen to The Mould Show Podcast on ITunes

Microbiological Literacy & COVID-19 Awareness

Uncategorized Mar 13, 2020

Understanding the microbial world is more important than ever

Now that the WHO ( has informed us all that the virus is now a Pandemic...this week’s show will suspend our regular discussion on mould issues to bring you some important and timely information on the COVID-19 virus. This week, we’ll be covering microbiological literacy, fractal scaling behaviour in death rate and how this is linked to what we know about the trail off of infection rate, the role of humidity and general virus transmission and infectivity, as well as debunking some myths surrounding some claims that the COVID-19 is a laboratory-made virus.


I also interview Richard Anthony from Eze Training ( who is launching a new course on infection control especially updated to cover COVID-19. This is aimed at the general public, hospitality staff as well as his core demographic from the tattoo and allied body, piercing and beauty arts field.

I'm going to share two of the more important slides from this show and encourage you to watch the entire video for an explanation.

Fractal scaling and COVID-19

The first slide shows the power law for the death rate from COVID-19 in China validating the fractal scaling seen in the infection rate outcome. This is an update on an earlier study introducing the power-law by the same authors a few weeks ago.

The relationship between humidity and SARS-CoV-2

The next slide I want to share is how relative humidity (RH) shows a U-shaped correlation with virus infectivity.  This study is not on COVID-19 but rather other influenza-type infections, but is still very relevant since COVID-19 may also show similar patterns.  This would mean that controlling RH indoors could be a very practical method of reducing infections.

Citation to this important paper: 

Humidity and respiratory virus transmission in tropical and temperate settings. Epidemiology and Infection, [online] 143(6), pp.1110-1118. Available at: <>

YouTube Link:


Timmis, K., Cavicchioli, R., Garcia, J., Nogales, B., Chavarría, M., Stein, L., McGenity, T., Webster, N., Singh, B., Handelsman, J., Lorenzo, V., Pruzzo, C., Timmis, J., Martín, J., Verstraete, W., Jetten, M., Danchin, A., Huang, W., Gilbert, J., Lal, R., Santos, H., Lee, S., Sessitsch, A., Bonfante, P., Gram, L., Lin, R., Ron, E., Karahan, Z., Meer, J., Artunkal, S., Jahn, D. and Harper, L., 2019. The urgent need for microbiology literacy in society. Environmental Microbiology, 21(5), pp.1513-1528. 10.1111/1462-2920.14611

Liu, S., Saif, L., Weiss, S., & Su, L. (2020). No credible evidence supporting claims of the laboratory engineering of SARS-CoV-2. Emerging Microbes & Infections, 9(1), 505-507. doi: 10.1080/22221751.2020.1733440

Luo, W., Majumder, M., Liu, D., Poirier, C., Mandl, K., Lipsitch, M., & Santillana, M. (2020). The role of absolute humidity on transmission rates of the COVID-19 outbreak. doi: 10.1101/2020.02.12.20022467

Batista, M. (2020). Estimation of the final size of the coronavirus epidemic by the logistic model. doi: 10.1101/2020.02.16.20023606

Ziff, A., & Ziff, R. (2020). Fractal kinetics of COVID-19 pandemic. doi: 10.1101/2020.02.16.20023820

Wang, M., Jiang, A., Gong, L., Luo, L., Guo, W., & Li, C. et al. (2020). Temperature significant change COVID-19 Transmission in 429 cities. doi: 10.1101/2020.02.22.20025791

Cai, Y., Huang, T., Liu, X., & Xu, G. (2020). The Effects of "Fangcang, Huoshenshan, and Leishenshan" Makeshift Hospitals and Temperature on the Mortality of COVID-19. doi: 10.1101/2020.02.26.20028472

Oliveiros, B., Caramelo, L., Ferreira, N., & Caramelo, F. (2020). Role of temperature and humidity in the modulation of the doubling time of COVID-19 cases. doi: 10.1101/2020.03.05.20031872

PAYNTER, S., 2014. Humidity and respiratory virus transmission in tropical and temperate settings. Epidemiology and Infection, [online] 143(6), pp.1110-1118. Available at: <> [Accessed 14 March 2020].

Watch the Livestream that includes a full discussion on the U-shaped humidity effect.  

Interview with Richard Anthony from:

Every week, I do live streams on public health topics. Join me on Facebook

Dr. Cameron Jones


50% Complete

Get your FREE mould assessment questionnaire

Find out today how your home ranks using our 12-point rating scale and take control of your environmental health.