Occurrence of HEV-RNA in Italian Regional Pork and Wild Boar Food Products
Hepatitis E is an emerging threat in industrialized countries. The foodborne transmission linked to consumption of pork and game meat is considered the main source of autochthonous infection. In Europe, small outbreaks have been reported linked to the consumption of pork liver sausages and wild boar meat. Based on previous findings and on increasing evidence of pork and game meat as a vehicle for HEV infections, the present study investigated the occurrence of HEV in 99 pork and 63 wild boar sausages and salami sold in Southern Italy. The HEV genome was detected in four wild boar sausages. Sequencing from 2 wild boar sausages confirmed that the HEV strains detected belonged to HEV-3 genotype, not assigned to any defined subtype. Data obtained confirmed the possible occurrence of HEV in pork products and in game. Although the detection rate is low, these products are frequently consumed raw after curing, whose effect on virus viability is still unknown.
KeywordsHEV Genotype 3 Pork products Wild boar Sausages
This study was supported by the Ministry of Health, Italy-Directorate General for Animal Health and Veterinary Drugs - Grant title “Hepatitis E (HEV) and Emerging Zoonoses”. We kindly thank all the departments involved that have collaborated for its realization.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Informed consent was not required, as no human participants or individuals were included in this study.
Research Involving Human Participants and/or Animals
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals, performed by any of the authors.
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