The 2019-2020 coronavirus pandemic in Italy: immunologic and cultural hurdles on the road to a cure


Braz J Infect Dis




ABSTRACT Background: Global publications on Q fever have increased after the 2007 epidemic in the Netherlands. However, the epidemiology of Q fever/coxiellosis in Brazil is still poorly understood. Accordingly, there have been few studies investigating the presence of Coxiella burnetii in dairy products around the world, especially in Brazil, where consumption of fresh cheese made from raw-milk is very high. Objective: This study was a random survey to assess the prevalence of C. burnetii by PCR in traditional Minas artisanal cheese from the Serro microregion, Brazil, which is manufactured from bovine raw-milk. Methods: DNA extracted from 53 cheese samples were analyzed by nested PCR with C. burnetii-specific primers and the products confirmed by DNA sequencing. Results: Out of the 53 cheese samples five (9.43%) were C. burnetii DNA-positive, each coming from one of the respective randomly selected manufacturing agroindustries.Based on our results, it is estimated that 1.62 tons/day of ready-to-eat cheese made from raw-milk from a total of 16.2 tons produced daily in the study region are contaminated with C. burnetii. Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first report of highly heat-resistant zoonotic pathogen in raw-milk Brazilian artisanal cheese. This food safety hazard has been completely neglected in ready-to-eat raw-milk Brazilian artisanal cheese and could imply potential threats to consumers, since C. burnetii survives in artisanal cheese submitted to long ripening periods. Thus, this work established random and representative baseline prevalence of C. burnetii in this food product in Brazil. Further epidemiological studies, monitoring trends and setting control targets are warranted. Finally, these results point out the importance of including C. burnetii in animal and public health surveillance programs.

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