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Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis: human exposure through environmental and domestic aerosols

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

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  • Glenn Rhodes
  • Hollian Richardson
  • John Hermon-Taylor
  • Andrew Weightman
  • Andrew Higham
  • Roger Pickup
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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>14/07/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>Pathogens
Issue number3
Volume3
Number of pages19
Pages (from-to)577-595
Publication statusPublished
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

Mycobacterium avium subspecies paratuberculosis (Map) causes Johne’s disease in animals and is significantly associated with Crohn’s disease (CD) in humans. Our previous studies have shown Map to be present in U.K. rivers due to land deposition from chronic livestock infection and runoff driven by rainfall. The epidemiology of CD in Cardiff showed a significant association with the River Taff, in which Map can be detected on a regular basis. We have previously hypothesized that aerosols from the river might influence the epidemiology of CD. In this preliminary study, we detected Map by quantitative PCR in one of five aerosol samples collected above the River Taff. In addition, we examined domestic showers from different regions in the U.K. and detected Map in three out of 30 independent samples. In detecting Map in river aerosols and those from domestic showers, this is the first study to provide evidence that aerosols are an exposure route for Map to humans and may play a role in the epidemiology of CD.

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.