The research, published in the Emerging Infectious Diseases journal, looks at an incident at a restaurant in Guangzhou in January. A family had travelled from Wuhan, where coronavirus broke out, and one member was asymptomatic.
Nine other people, including two other groups on nearby tables, later came down with the virus.
The research claims the air conditioning in the restaurant spread droplets from the infected person further.
It adds: “To prevent the spread of COVID-19 in restaurants, we recommend strengthening temperature monitoring surveillance, increasing the distance between tables, and improving ventilation.”
However, none of the other 81 people inside the restaurant were struck down with the virus.
It comes as more than 2.5 million around the world have been infected with COVID-19 and 172,927 people have died.
There have been 129,044 confirmed cases in the UK and the death toll is 17,337.
In other coronavirus news, the Government is facing mounting criticism over desperate shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE).
A delivery of PPE from Turkey, which was delayed and originally due on Sunday, has arrived in the UK this morning.
Elsewhere, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced that human trials led by the University of Oxford to develop a coronavirus vaccine will begin this Thursday.
Speaking at Tuesday’s Downing Street press briefing, Mr Hancock said the UK is at the “front of the global effort” to find a vaccine.
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He added: “We have put more money than any other country into a global search for a vaccine and, for all the efforts around the world, two of the leading vaccine developments are taking place here at home – at Oxford and Imperial.
“Both of these promising projects are making rapid progress and I’ve told the scientists leading them we will do everything in our power to support.”
Mr Hancock pledged a further £22.5 million to Imperial College London, while Oxford will be granted £20 million to fund its clinical trials.
On the issue of coronavirus testing, the Government is under fire over its 100,000-per-day target for the end of the month.
With the deadline looming, the Government is still only meeting around a fifth of its target.
Less than half of the available testing capacity has been used, according to the latest figures.
Fewer than 20,000 tests were conducted in the 24 hours to 9am on Monday despite there being the capacity for 39,250.
Downing Street insisted Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is continuing his recovery from coronavirus after being discharged from hospital, had full confidence in Mr Hancock and the testing target.
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