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Brief Reports
Emergence of Norovirus GII.17-associated Outbreak and Sporadic Cases in Korea from 2014 to 2015
Sunyoung Jung, Bo-Mi Hwang, HyunJu Jung, GyungTae Chung, Cheon-Kwon Yoo, Deog-Yong Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2017;8(1):86-90.   Published online February 28, 2017
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2017.8.1.12
  • 2,571 View
  • 22 Download
  • 7 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF

Human norovirus are major causative agent of nonbacterial acute gastroenteritis. In general, genogroup (G) II.4 is the most prominent major genotype that circulate in human population and the environment. However, a shift in genotypic trends was observed in Korea in December 2014. In this study, we investigated the trend of norovirus genotype in detail using the database of Acute Diarrhea Laboratory Surveillance (K-EnterNet) in Korea. GII.17 has since become a major contributor to outbreaks of norovirus-related infections and sporadic cases in Korea, although the reason for this shift remain unknown.

Occurrence of Norovirus GII.4 Sydney Variant-related Outbreaks in Korea
Sunyoung Jung, Bo-Mi Hwang, Hyun Ju Jeong, Gyung Tae Chung, Cheon-Kwon Yoo, Yeon-Ho Kang, Deog-Yong Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2015;6(5):322-326.   Published online October 31, 2015
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phrp.2015.10.004
  • 1,721 View
  • 17 Download
  • 7 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Human noroviruses are major causative agents of food and waterborne outbreaks of nonbacterial acute gastroenteritis. In this study, we report the epidemiological features of three outbreak cases of norovirus in Korea, and we describe the clinical symptoms and distribution of the causative genotypes. The incidence rates of the three outbreaks were 16.24% (326/2,007), 4.1% (27/656), and 16.8% (36/214), respectively. The patients in these three outbreaks were affected by acute gastroenteritis. These schools were provided unheated food from the same manufacturing company. Two genotypes (GII.3 and GII.4) of the norovirus were detected in these cases. Among them, major causative strains of GII.4 (Hu-jeju-47-2007KR-like) were identified in patients, food handlers, and groundwater from the manufacturing company of the unheated food. In the GII.4 (Hu-jeju-47-2007KR-like) strain of the norovirus, the nucleotide sequences were identical and identified as the GII.4 Sydney variant. Our data suggests that the combined epidemiological and laboratory results were closely related, and the causative pathogen was the GII.4 Sydney variant strain from contaminated groundwater.
Epidemics of Norovirus GII.4 Variant in Outbreak Cases in Korea, 2004–2012
Sunyoung Jung, Hyun Ju Jeong, Bo-Mi Hwang, Cheon-Kwon Yoo, Gyung Tae Chung, Hyesook Jeong, Yeon-Ho Kang, Deog-Yong Lee
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2015;6(5):318-321.   Published online October 31, 2015
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phrp.2015.10.002
  • 1,814 View
  • 19 Download
  • 1 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Norovirus GII.4 is recognized as a worldwide cause of nonbacterial outbreaks. In particular, the GII.4 variant occurs every 2–3 years according to antigenic variation. The aim of our study was to identify GII.4 variants in outbreaks in Korea during 2004–2012. Partial VP1 sequence of norovirus GII.4-related outbreaks during 2004–2012 was analyzed. The partial VP1 sequence was detected with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, seminested polymerase chain reaction, and nucleotide sequence of 312-314 base pairs for phylogenetic comparison. Nine variants emerged in outbreaks, with the Sydney variant showing predominance recently. This predominance may persist for at least 3 years, although new variants may appear in Korea.
Original Article
Emerging Pathogens and Vehicles of Food- and Water-borne Disease Outbreaks in Korea, 2007–2012
Shinje Moon, Il-Woong Sohn, Yeongseon Hong, Hyungmin Lee, Ji-Hyuk Park, Geun-Yong Kwon, Sangwon Lee, Seung-Ki Youn
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2014;5(1):34-39.   Published online February 28, 2014
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phrp.2013.12.004
  • 1,778 View
  • 16 Download
  • 14 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Food- and water-borne disease outbreaks (FBDOs) are an important public health problem worldwide. This study investigated the trends in FBDOs in Korea and established emerging causal pathogens and causal vehicles.
Methods
We analyzed FBDOs in Korea by year, location, causal pathogens, and causal vehicles from 2007 to 2012. Information was collected from the FBDOs database in the Korean Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Results
During 2007–2012, a total of 1794 FBDOs and 48,897 patients were reported. After 2007, FBDOs and patient numbers steadily decreased over the next 2 years and then plateaued until 2011. However, in 2012, FBDOs increased slightly accompanied by a large increase in the number of affected patients. Our results highlight the emergence of norovirus and pathogenic Escherichia coli other than enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) in schools in 2012. We found that pickled vegetables is an emerging causal vehicle responsible for this problem.
Conclusion
On the basis of this study we recommend intensified inspections of pickled vegetable manufacturers and the strengthening of laboratory surveillance of relevant pathogens.
Brief Report
Trends in Water- and Foodborne Disease Outbreaks in Korea, 2007–2009
Jin Gwack, Kyoung-Chan Lee, Hyo Jin Lee, Wooseok Kwak, Dong Woo Lee, Yeon Hwa Choi, Jin Seok Kim, Young Ah Kang
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2010;1(1):50-54.   Published online December 31, 2010
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.phrp.2010.12.011
  • 1,866 View
  • 13 Download
  • 14 Citations
AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
In Korea, every outbreak of acute gastroenteritis in two or more patients who are epidemiologically related is investigated by local public health centres to determine causative agents and control the outbreak with the support of the Korean Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The findings and conclusions of each outbreak investigation have been summarized annually since 2007 to make reports and statistics of water- and foodborne disease outbreaks.
Methods
All outbreaks reported to Korean Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2007 to 2009 were included in the study. We analysed the trends and epidemiologic aspects of outbreaks by month, year, and location.
Results
The total number of outbreaks decreased steadily each year for the period the study covered, whereas the number of patients per outbreak continued to increase resulting from a dramatic increase in the number of patients per outbreak in food service establishments. The outbreaks occurred in the period of June to September, when temperature and humidity are relatively high, which accounted for 44.3% of total outbreaks. The monthly number of outbreaks decreased steadily until November after peaking in May 2009. The most common causative agent was norovirus (16.5%) followed by pathogenic Escherichia coli. The rate of causative agent identification was 60.1%, with higher identification rates in larger outbreaks.
Conclusions
Although a decreasing trend of outbreaks by year was observed in the study, the food services in schools and companies require more attention to hygiene and sanitation to prevent large outbreaks. The ability to establish the cause of an outbreak should be further improved.

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives