Viral antibodies in agricultural populations exposed to aerosols from wastewater irrigation during a viral disease outbreak

B. Fattal, M. Margalith, H. I. Shuval, Y. Wax, A. Morag

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

The presence of antibodies to eight enteroviruses (echovirus types 4, 7, and 9, coxsackievirus types A9, B1, B3, and B4, and hepatitis A virus) and varicella-zoster virus was determined during a two-year period, 1980-1981, in paired blood samples of 777 persons in selected agricultural communities (kibbutzim) in Israel. These communities were divided Into several categories on the basis of waste-water utilization for sprinkler irrigation and/or fish ponds. Among the nine viral antibodies studied, there was a consistent and significant excess of antibodies to echovirus type 4 only, particularly in the age group 0-5 years, in kibbutzim that had been exposed to aerosols from sprinkler Irrigation with partially treated wastewater from nearby towns. This finding may be attributed to a major national echovirus type 4 epidemic, which had peaked shortly before the collection of the blood samples. The fact that no similar excess of the other viral antibodies studied was found in any of the kibbutz categories suggests that, under nonepidemic conditions, exposure to wastewater aerosols usually does not lead to an excess in enteroviral infection. No excess of clinical cases of echovirus type 4-associated disease (meningitis or encephalitis) was detected In the communities exposed to wastewater aerosol.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)899-906
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Epidemiology
Volume125
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1987
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aerosols
  • Antibodies
  • Disease outbreaks
  • Echoviruses
  • Viral

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology

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