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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania » Eastern Regional Research Center » Food Safety and Intervention Technologies Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #280386

Title: Novel methods for detection of foodborne viruses

item Kingsley, David

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/12/2012
Publication Date: 8/19/2012
Citation: Kingsley, D.H. 2012. Novel methods for detection of foodborne viruses. Meeting Abstract., American Chemical Society (ACS) meeting., Philadelphia, PA., August 19-23, 2012., Volume 1, Page 1.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Enteric viruses such as norovirus are the number one cause of foodborne illness. Bivalve shellfish such as oysters efficiently bioconcentrate and retain theses pathogens, making raw shellfish consumption a significant risk factor for acquisition of these viruses. Recent ARS research indicates that viable viruses sequester themselves within the hemocytes, or oyster blood cells, of live shellfish. We have recently utilized this finding to demonstrate that purifying HAV or murine norovirus RNA directly from hemocytes is an efficient and rapid method for testing shellfish. Essentially this simple test involves removing or draining hemocytes from oyster tissues, centrifugation, lysing the pellet and purifying virus RNA using commercial RNA purification kits. We anticipate that this newly developed method will lead to a practical method for routine testing of shellfish. Currently human norovirus strains cannot be propagated in the laboratory and current detection methods are based on RNA detection methods such as RT-PCR. Unfortunately RNA-based methods cannot distinguish infectious virions from damaged virions unless the capsid has been completely destroyed. In order to infect the host cell, a virus must first bind to its receptor. We have exploited this fact to develop a means of separating potentially infectious virus from inactive virus using virus receptor-like glycoproteins attached to magnetic beads. This extraction method when coupled with RT-PCR extraction should reduce the detection of inactive norovirus virions that are not a threat to public health. The utility of this method for testing of shellfish and other foods is being evaluated.