The scenario humans need to worry about would occur if the infection rate in pigs drops. At low infection rates, there is actually a higher chance pigs will pass on HEV to humans at slaughter.
Kunio Satou and Hiroshi Nishiura analysed blood test data from 2,500 pigs, natural hosts for the virus, on Japanese farms at Hokkaido, Honshu and Kyushu. They found that by the age of 150 days, over 95% of pigs had been infected with HEV.
Inoculation studies have shown that the virus remains in pigs’ faeces and some organs for up to 30 days after infection. This means that the chances of pigs excreting the virus when they are slaughtered at the age of 180 days are currently small. However, if the infection weakens and pigs don’t get infected with HEV until they are older, more pigs will still be carrying the virus when they reach the slaughterhouse.
HEV, which is found worldwide, can potentially cause acute hepatitis in humans. So monitoring infection rates could help protect meat processors and vets. The disease can be transmitted by drinking water contaminated with faeces as well as by eating pork: uncooked wild boar liver is one Japanese delicacy that frequently leads to infection.
Suckling pigs don’t contract the virus in their first 30 days, because a maternal antibody protects them. Vaccines are currently under development against HEV, although Satou and Nishiura suggest that changes in husbandry practices and avoiding eating raw liver might be more cost-effective measures should HEV’s hold on pig farms weaken.
Press Officer | alfa
New research recovers nutrients from seafood process water
31.10.2018 | Chalmers University of Technology
Plant Hormone Makes Space Farming a Possibility
17.10.2018 | Universität Zürich
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.
Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
16.11.2018 | Health and Medicine
16.11.2018 | Life Sciences
16.11.2018 | Life Sciences