A method has been developed for recovery of viruses from cooked peeled prawns. The method involves elution of viruses from the surface of prawns using a suitable buffer, clarification of the extract by centrifugation and concentration of viruses present by ultracentrifugation. In trials with laboratory-contaminated samples of prawns the method recovered at least 70% of added poliovirus 1. The survival of poliovirus 1 on the surface of cooked peeled prawns was followed during storage at 4–6°C and −20°C for up to 15 d and up to 300 d, respectively. A substantial proportion (22–75%) of added virus remained infective for the periods that this product is usually stored either during transport and distribution or in the home. Thirty retail samples of cooked peeled prawns were examined for presence of viruses infective for man. Viruses were not isolated from any sample

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Author notes

1Present address: CSIRO Division of Food Research, P.O. Box 52, North Ryde, NSW 2113, Australia.