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The prevalence of enteric RNA viruses in stools from diarrheic and non-diarrheic people in southwestern Alberta, Canada

Leblanc, D., Inglis, G.D., Boras, V.F., Brassard, J., Houde, A. (2017). The prevalence of enteric RNA viruses in stools from diarrheic and non-diarrheic people in southwestern Alberta, Canada, 162(1), 117-128. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00705-016-3063-9

Abstract

© 2016, Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada. Southwestern Alberta is a region of Canada that has high rates of enteritis as well as high densities of livestock. The presence of enteric RNA viruses, specifically norovirus (NoV) GI, GII, GIII, GIV; sapovirus (SaV); rotavirus (RV); and astrovirus (AstV), was evaluated in stools from diarrheic (n = 2281) and non-diarrheic (n = 173) people over a 1-year period in 2008 and 2009. Diarrheic individuals lived in rural (46.6 %) and urban (53.4 %) settings and ranged in age from less than 1 month to 102 years, and the highest prevalence of infection in these individuals was in November. In all, viruses were detected in diarrheic stools from 388 individuals (17.0 %). NoV GII was the most frequently detected virus (8.0 %; n = 182) followed by SaV (4.3 %; n = 97), RV (2.0 %; n = 46), AstV (1.8 %; n = 42), NoV GI (0.9 %; n = 20), and NoV GIV (0.1 %; n = 1). Animal NoV GIII was never detected. The prevalence of mixed viral infections in diarrheic individuals was 2.8 % (n = 11). Children from 1 to 5 years of age accounted for the highest prevalence of positive stools, followed by the elderly individuals (≥70 years). Only NoV GII (1.2 %; n = 2) and SaV (1.2 %; n = 2) were detected in stools from non-diarrheic people. Sequence analysis of a subset of stools revealed homology to NoV, SaV and RV sequences from humans but not to strains from non-human animals. The results of this study do not support the hypothesis that viruses of animal origin have a significant impact on the occurrence of acute gastroenteritis caused by RNA enteric viruses in people living in southwestern Alberta.

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