This study was conducted to evaluate the inactivation of murine norovirus (MNV-1) and hepatitis A virus (HAV) by pulsed ultraviolet (UV) light. MNV-1 was used as a model for human norovirus. Viral suspensions of about 10(6) PFU/ml were exposed to pulses of UV light for different times and at different distances in a Xenon Steripulse device (model RS-3000C). Inactivation studies were also carried out on 1-cm(2) stainless steel and polyvinyl chloride disks with 10(5) PFU/ml. Inactivation of MNV-1 and HAV at 10.5 cm from the UV source was greater on inert surfaces than in suspension. The presence of organic matter (fetal bovine serum) reduced the effectiveness of pulsed light both in suspension and on surfaces. However, 2-s treatment in the absence of FBS completely inactivated (5 log reduction) the viral load at different distances tested, whether in suspension (MNV-1) or on disks (MNV-1 and HAV). The same treatment in the presence of fetal bovine serum (5%) allowed a reduction of about 3 log. This study showed that short duration pulses represent an excellent alternative for inactivation of food-borne viruses. This technology could be used to inactivate viruses in drinking water or on food-handling surfaces.
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