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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: PATHOGEN DETECTION AND INTERVENTION METHODS FOR SHELLFISH

Location: Food Safety and Intervention Technologies

Title: Shellfish-associated enteric virus illness: virus localization, disease outbreaks and prevention

Author
item Richards, Gary

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: December 30, 2013
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Numerous outbreaks of shellfish-borne enteric virus illness have been reported worldwide. Most notable among the outbreaks are those involving norovirus illness and hepatitis A. Lessons learned from outbreak investigations indicate that most outbreaks are preventable. Anthropogenic sources of contamination will continue to invade shellfish growing waters. Shellfish, by their very nature, will continue to bioconcentrate these contaminants, including enteric viruses. There is no quick fix for enteric virus contamination of shellfish; however, vigilance on behalf of the industry, regulatory agencies, and the consumer could substantially reduce the incidence of illness. Enhanced monitoring in all areas of shellfish production, harvesting, distribution, and processing would help to reduce viral illnesses. Pollution abatement and improved hygienic practices on behalf of the industry and consumers are needed. Improved analytical techniques for the detection of enteric viruses in shellfish are under development and will lead to enhanced shellfish safety. Once illnesses occur, better reporting and epidemiological follow-up of outbreaks are often useful to control the further spread of disease.

Last Modified: 7/31/2014
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