Detection of Hepatitis A Virus in Shellfish (Mytilus galloprovincialis) with RT-PCR

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A PCR assay for the detection of hepatitis A virus (HAV) in shellfish is described. The procedure involves the concentration of viral particles with the use of polyethylene glycol (PEG), followed by viral RNA extraction and purification with oligo(dT) cellulose. Reverse transcriptase–PCR detection was accomplished in a single step with the use of primers specific for the VP3-VP1 region of the genome. The procedure detected one 50% tissue culture infective dose (0.6 PFU) per 25 g of shellfish homogenate. Heminested PCR was then carried out to verify the specificity of the PCR products. The method was used to detect HAV in shellfish samples from EU categories B and C and to evaluate the quality of shellfish in routine monitoring for HAV in view of the relevant public health implications of this foodborne disease.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Dipartimento Sanitàe Benessere degli Animali, Universitàdegli Studi - Bari, Provinciale per Casamassima, km 3, 70010 Valenzano, Bari, Italy

Publication date: September 1, 2003

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