Viruses of foodborne origin: a review, published by Dove Medical Press

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This review covers viruses that have been implicated in foodborne disease and are predominantly spread through fecal contamination, with the main food vehicles of transmission being shellfish harvested in polluted waters and ready-to-eat foods prepared with much handling by infected workers.

Virus Adaptation and Treatment has published “Viruses of foodborne origin: a review”.

As corresponding author Dr Ewen Todd says “Enteric viruses are major contributors to foodborne disease; these include adenovirus, astrovirus, rotavirus, sapovirus, hepatitis A and E viruses, and particularly norovirus which is the leading etiological agent of foodborne disease in the USA and other developed countries. However, most developing countries have no surveillance systems to detect this virus, and their citizens are not even aware of it. Yet, it is known that the virus has a worldwide distribution with a substantial morbidity. The reasons why these agents are so effective in causing foodborne illness are that they survive well in the environment including food and food contact surfaces, are resistant to mild disinfectants, are excreted in abundance in feces, and they have very low infectious doses. The main measures for preventing foodborne viral illnesses for ready-to-eat food is effective hand hygiene, proper clean-up and disinfection after vomiting or diarrhea, and prevention of food contact by infected individuals; and for shellfish is sourcing from non-polluted waters and thorough cooking of the meat.”

Dr Todd continues “Some emerging food-virus associations that have to be researched further are hepatitis E virus with pork and game meat, sapovirus with molluscs, avian influenza viruses with raw poultry products, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus with camel milk and meat, and Nipah virus with pigs and products in contact with saliva from fruit bats. As diagnostics improve, more foodborne illnesses relating to enteric viruses are expected to be identified, especially in developing countries where are little data today.”

As Professor Jonathan Dinman, Editor-in-Chief, explains “This is a wonderful review of foodborne viruses that will be useful for those who teach the subject of virology”

Virus Adaptation and Treatment is an international, peer-reviewed, open access journal focusing on the study of virology, viral adaptation and the development and use of antiviral drugs and vaccines to achieve improved outcomes in infection control and treatment.
Dove Medical Press Ltd is a privately held company specializing in the publication of Open Access peer-reviewed journals across the broad spectrum of science, technology and especially medicine.

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Angela Jones
Dove Medical Press
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