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National survey of foodborne viruses in Australian oysters at production


Torok, V and Hodgson, K and McLeod, C and Tan, J and Malhi, N and Turnbull, A, National survey of foodborne viruses in Australian oysters at production, Food Microbiology, 69 pp. 196-203. ISSN 0740-0020 (2017) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2017 Elsevier Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1016/


Internationally human enteric viruses, such as norovirus (NoV) and hepatitis A virus (HAV), are frequently associated with shellfish related foodborne disease outbreaks, and it has been suggested that acceptable NoV limits based on end-point testing be established for this high risk food group. Currently, shellfish safety is generally managed through the use of indicators of faecal contamination. Between July 2014 and August 2015, a national prevalence survey for NoV and HAV was done in Australian oysters suitable for harvest. Two sampling rounds were undertaken to determine baseline levels of these viruses. Commercial Australian growing areas, represented by 33 oyster production regions in New South Wales, South Australia, Tasmania and Queensland, were included in the survey. A total of 149 and 148 samples were collected during round one and two of sampling, respectively, and tested for NoV and HAV by quantitative RT-PCR. NoV and HAV were not detected in oysters collected in either sampling round, indicating an estimated prevalence for these viruses in Australian oysters of <2% with a 95% confidence interval based on the survey design. The low estimated prevalence of foodborne viruses in Australian oysters was consistent with epidemiological evidence, with no oyster-related foodborne viral illness reported during the survey period.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:norovirus, hepatitis A virus, Crassostrea gigas, Saccostrea glomerata
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Microbiology
Research Field:Virology
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - aquaculture
Objective Field:Aquaculture oysters
UTAS Author:Turnbull, A (Dr Alison Turnbull)
ID Code:139444
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:16
Deposited By:Fisheries and Aquaculture
Deposited On:2020-06-16
Last Modified:2020-07-20

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