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Viruses 2018, 10(8), 425; https://doi.org/10.3390/v10080425

Reported Direct and Indirect Contact with Dromedary Camels among Laboratory-Confirmed MERS-CoV Cases

1
Department of Infectious Hazard Management, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization, 1211 Geneva, Switzerland
2
Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health (GmbH), Institute of Epidemiology, 85764 Neuherberg, Germany
3
Institut Pasteur, Centre for Global Health Research and Education, 75015 Paris, France
4
Department of Infectious Hazard Management, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean, 11371 Cairo, Egypt
5
Department of Country Preparedness and International Health Regulations, World Health Organization Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean, 11371 Cairo, Egypt
6
Department of Food Safety and Zoonoses, World Health Organization, 1211 Geneva, Switzerland
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 July 2018 / Revised: 30 July 2018 / Accepted: 9 August 2018 / Published: 13 August 2018
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Abstract

Dromedary camels (Camelus dromedarius) are now known to be the vertebrate animal reservoir that intermittently transmits the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) to humans. Yet, details as to the specific mechanism(s) of zoonotic transmission from dromedaries to humans remain unclear. The aim of this study was to describe direct and indirect contact with dromedaries among all cases, and then separately for primary, non-primary, and unclassified cases of laboratory-confirmed MERS-CoV reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) between 1 January 2015 and 13 April 2018. We present any reported dromedary contact: direct, indirect, and type of indirect contact. Of all 1125 laboratory-confirmed MERS-CoV cases reported to WHO during the time period, there were 348 (30.9%) primary cases, 455 (40.4%) non-primary cases, and 322 (28.6%) unclassified cases. Among primary cases, 191 (54.9%) reported contact with dromedaries: 164 (47.1%) reported direct contact, 155 (44.5%) reported indirect contact. Five (1.1%) non-primary cases also reported contact with dromedaries. Overall, unpasteurized milk was the most frequent type of dromedary product consumed. Among cases for whom exposure was systematically collected and reported to WHO, contact with dromedaries or dromedary products has played an important role in zoonotic transmission. View Full-Text
Keywords: MERS-CoV; dromedary camels; zoonotic transmission MERS-CoV; dromedary camels; zoonotic transmission
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. (CC BY 4.0).
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Conzade, R.; Grant, R.; Malik, M.R.; Elkholy, A.; Elhakim, M.; Samhouri, D.; Ben Embarek, P.K.; Van Kerkhove, M.D. Reported Direct and Indirect Contact with Dromedary Camels among Laboratory-Confirmed MERS-CoV Cases. Viruses 2018, 10, 425.

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