Varicella-zoster virus

Varicella-zoster virus

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET - INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCES

SECTION I - INFECTIOUS AGENT

NAME: Varicella-zoster virus

SYNONYM OR CROSS REFERENCE: VZV, Human Herpesvirus 3, Herpes Zoster, Chickenpox, Shingles

CHARACTERISTICS: Herpesviridae, Alphaherpesvirinae; dsDNA, 100nm diameter, enveloped, icosahedral capsid

SECTION II - HEALTH HAZARD

PATHOGENICITY: Chickenpox (Varicella) - acute generalized disease with sudden onset of fever and vesicular eruption of the skin and mucous membranes; rarely fatal except to immunocompromised who are at increased risk. Shingles (Zoster) - local mainfestation following reactivation of varicella present in latent form in sensory ganglia; inflammatory reaction of the posterior nerve roots and ganglia, accompanied by crops of vesicles over skin supplied by the affected nerves

EPIDEMIOLOGY: Worldwide; Varicella chiefly a disease of children (75% of population by age 15 and 90% of young adults had disease) and more frequent In winter and early spring in temperate zones; Zoster occurs more commonly in adults

HOST RANGE: Humans

INFECTIOUS DOSE: Unknown

MODE OF TRANSMISSION: By direct contact, droplet or airbone spread of secretions of respiratory tract (varicella) or vesicle fluid (zoster); indirectly via contaminated fomites; scabs are not infective

INCUBATION PERIOD: From 2-3 weeks (usually 13-17 days); may be prolonged after passive immunization to varicella or in immunodeficient individuals

COMMUNICABILITY: Chickenpox is highly communicable 1-2 days before onset of rash and 6 days after appearance of vesicles; herpes zoster not as infectious but is source of infection 1 week after appearance of lesions

SECTION III - DISSEMINATION

RESERVOIR: Humans

ZOONOSIS: None

VECTORS: None

SECTION IV - VIABILITY

DRUG SUSCEPTIBILITY: Vidarabine and Acyclovir are effective

SUSCEPTIBILITY TO DISINFECTANTS: Susceptible to disinfectants - 1% sodium hypochlorite, 70% ethanol, 2% glutaraldehyde, formaldehyde

PHYSICAL INACTIVATION: Inactivated by heat

SURVIVAL OUTSIDE HOST: Virus can survive in secretions on inanimate surfaces for short periods

SECTION V - MEDICAL

SURVEILLANCE: Monitor for symptoms; confirmation by recovery of virus or serology

FIRST AID/TREATMENT: Drug therapy for severe cases of herpes zoster in immunocompromised

IMMUNIZATION: Live vaccine licensed in North America

PROPHYLAXIS: Varicella-zoster immune globulin (VZIG) indicated after exposure to chickenpox or zoster in individuals with risk of serious morbidity or mortality

SECTION VI - LABORATORY HAZARDS

LABORATORY-ACQUIRED INFECTIONS: Not a demonstrated cause of lab infections

SOURCES/SPECIMENS: Vesicular fluids, extract of crusts, respiratory secretions and other clinical materials

PRIMARY HAZARDS: Direct contact with broken skin or mucous membranes; accidental parenteral inoculation, inhalation of infectious aerosols

SPECIAL HAZARDS: None

SECTION VII - RECOMMENDED PRECAUTIONS

CONTAINMENT REQUIREMENTS: Biosafety level 2 practices, containment equipment and facilities are recommended for activities utilizing known or potentially infectious clinical materials or cultures

PROTECTIVE CLOTHING: Laboratory coat; gloves when direct contact with infectious materials is unavoidable

OTHER PRECAUTIONS: None

SECTION VIII - HANDLING INFORMATION

SPILLS: Allow aerosols to settle; wearing protective clothing, gently cover spill with paper towels and apply 1% sodium hypochlorite, starting at perimeter and working towards the centre; allow sufficient contact time before clean up (30 min)

DISPOSAL: Decontaminate before disposal; steam sterilization, incineration, chemical disinfection

STORAGE: In sealed containers that are appropriately labelled

SECTION IX - MISCELLANEOUS INFORMATION

Date prepared: September, 1996 Prepared by: Office of Biosafety

LCDC

Although the information, opinions and recommendations contained in this Material Safety Data Sheet are compiled from sources believed to be reliable, we accept no responsibility for the accuracy, sufficiency, or reliability or for any loss or injury resulting from the use of the information. Newly discovered hazards are frequent and this information may not be completely up to date.

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