A specially formulated antimicrobial coating can keep surfaces clear of a human coronavirus for up to 90 days with just one application, a preliminary study said Friday, suggesting a new line of defense against COVID-19.

The paper by researchers at the University of Arizona (UA), which has not yet been peer-reviewed, found that the amount of virus on coated surfaces reduced by 90 percent in 10 minutes and by 99.9 percent in two hours.

Charles Gerba, a microbiologist at UA who was the study’s senior author, told AFP the technology was “the next advancement in infection control.”

“I think it’s mostly important for high-use surfaces like subways and buses, because you could disinfect them but then the next people that come in there will recontaminate the surfaces,” he said.