Bivalve mollusks as filter-feeders concentrate in their digestive tissue microorganisms likely present in the harvesting water, thus becoming risky food especially if consumed raw or poorly cooked. To eliminate bacteria and viruses eventually accumulated, they must undergo a depuration process which efficacy on viruses is on debate. To better clarify the worth of the depuration process on virus elimination from mussels, in this study we investigated rotavirus kinetics of accumulation and depuration in Mytilus galloprovincialis experimentally contaminated. Depuration process was monitored for 9 days and virus residual presence and infectivity were evaluated by real time quantitative polymerase chain reaction, cell culture and electron microscopy at days 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 9 of depuration. Variables like presence of ozone and of microalgae feeding were also analyzed as possible depuration enhancers. Results showed a two-phase virus removal kinetic with a high decrease in the first 24 h of depuration and 5 days necessary to completely remove rotavirus.
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