Emerging issues in occupationally relevant zoonoses.
Clin Occup Environ Med 2002 Aug; 2:631-649
Diseases that are transmitted from animals to humans are known as zoonoses. Humans can contract such diseases directly from animals, as in the case of rabies. They also can contract zoonoses after environmental contamination; this is the case with leptospirosis (Weil's disease), which results from infected urine contaminated soil or water. Vectors also can transmit zoonoses to humans, as is the case with typhus. Zoonoses not only cause human disease; they also play a critical role in the development of new human diseases . Some of these diseases remain zoonotic, some develop the ability to be transferred between humans, and others specifically adapt to and persist within human populations. Bubonic plague, for example, persists in animal reservoirs but can cause human epidemics with human-to-human transmission. AIDS is a dramatic example in which an animal virus (simian immunodeficiency virus [SIV] persists through infection in humans. Workers are at risk when their occupation exposes them to zoonotic agents. The past decade has seen tremendous changes in the number of known zoonotic agents and the geographic range of some zoonoses. Each of these situations confers new issues for workers. This article examines some zoonotic agents that have been recently introduced into the United States, zoonotic agents diagnosed with increasing frequency in the Americas, newly identified zoonotic agents, and the zoonotic transmission of influenza virus. I intend to provide important examples of these situations and their impact on workers, but not to include all zoonotic agents present in each category. Each situation has Important implications for worker protection.
Zoonoses; Animal-studies; Animals; Disease-transmission; Environmental-contamination; Humans; Workers; Occupational-exposure; Infectious-diseases
Ann F. Hubbs, Health Effects Laboratory Division, Naitonal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA
Clinics in Occupational and Environmental Medicine