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Polio virus found in Sao Paulo sewage, no human case: WHO

Published on Jun 24, 2014 7:21 AM

GENEVA (REUTERS) – The polio virus has been found in sewage samples near Sao Paulo, one of the venues for the soccer World Cup in Brazil, but no human case of the disease has been reported so far, the World Health Organization said on Monday.

The virus discovered in Sao Paulo sewage collected in March at Viracopos International Airport, and reported by Brazilian health authorities last week, is a close match to a strain isolated in a case in Equatorial Guinea, the WHO said.

“(The) virus has been detected in the sewage only ... To date no case of paralytic polio has been reported,” it said in a statement.

Polio invades the nervous system and can cause irreversible paralysis within hours. There is no cure for the disease but it can be prevented by immunisation. Children under age five are the most vulnerable.

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