Detection of low pathogenic influenza viruses in eggs from infected turkeys
Creators:Pankajavally Somanathan Pillai, Smitha
Advisor:Lee, Chang Won
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Series/Report no.:Food Animal Health Research Program. Graduate student poster competition, 2009
Studies on the potential of influenza viruses for egg borne transmission are limited. Experimental infection of breeder turkeys with H3N2 subtype influenza virus, A/turkey/Ohio/04, resulted in drastic declines in egg production and we confirmed high levels of virus replication and abundant distribution of avian type influenza receptors in the oviduct of turkeys. We also confirmed the presence of the virus in albumin of eggs using real time RT-PCR (RRT-PCR) and virus isolation in embryonated chicken eggs. Swabs from egg shells were also found positive by RRT-PCR. This is the first experimental demonstration of the transmission of low pathogenic avian influenza viruses to internal egg contents. Although there is no available evidence for vertical transmission of influenza viruses, the possibility of hatchery contamination as well as possible spread of virus during movement of contaminated cracked eggs as well as egg flats could be of serious food safety and public health concern.