Possibly the new coronavirus spreads when people speak and through breathing, said virologist and presidential advisor Anthony Fauci to Fox News.
Fauci said he had information that the virus could spread while people were just talking, rather than sneezing or coughing.
American academies of science have informed the White House that several initial scientific results tend to say that the virus spreads when people exhale.
If true, it may be the long-sought-after explanation for the apparently high infectivity of the virus that causes Covid-19 lung disease.
The White House is now preparing to recommend the general wearing of mouth masks.