Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Medical Norovirus (Norwalk) and Rotavirus

  1. Mar 22, 2008 #1

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    A colleague was recently very ill and the illness was attiributed by the doctor to the Norwalk virus (aka 'stomach flu'). My sister, a pediatrician, informed me that cases of norovirus/rotavirus have increased. I have to wonder with all the flooding in the midwest, Gulf Coast (Katrina and Rita), and southeast US, if the contamination of regions with agriculture waste/runoff and municpal sanitary/sewear systems dramatically increased.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norovirus (Caliciviridae)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotavirus (Reoviridae)
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 22, 2008 #2

    Moonbear

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Those virii can spread fairly easily via casual contact as well (hence the difficulty in eradicating them on cruise ships once a passenger or two board already infected). They're the ones people usually call "stomach flu."

    Without knowing more about it, I attribute it most likely to a more virulent strain or two evolving and spreading to those who have not been exposed previously. If that's what's going on, the incidence will slow down again as people get exposed and develop immunity.
     
  4. Mar 23, 2008 #3

    Astronuc

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    With respect to immunity, I was surprised to read -
    *Cellular and Humoral Immunity following Snow Mountain Virus Challenge, Lisa Lindesmith, Christine Moe, Jacques LePendu, Jeffrey A. Frelinger, John Treanor, and Ralph S. Baric
    http://jvi.asm.org/cgi/content/full/79/5/2900?view=long&pmid=15709009

    I wonder if this is peculiar to RNA-based virii.

    My colleague, who became ill, may have been exposed on an international airline flight.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?