Polio virus, illustration. Each virus particle is composed of a protein coat surrounding a core containing RNA genetic material. This virus infects children and causes polio or infantile polio.
Roger Harris / Scientific Gallery | Science Gallery | beautiful pictures
The New York State Department of Health on Thursday confirmed one case of polio and asked health care providers to look for other cases of infection.
A resident of Rockland County, less than an hour from New York City, has tested positive for polio, according to the state health department. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the infection.
Health authorities in New York believe the case originated outside the U.S. There have been no cases of polio originating in the United States since 1979, according to the CDC.
According to the state department of health, the individual’s strain of polio virus, known as reconstituted Sabin virus type 2, indicates a chain of infection that began in a person who had received oral polio vaccine, according to the state department of health. The oral polio vaccine contains a mild strain of the virus that is still able to replicate, which means that people who get the vaccine can spread the virus to others.
Oral polio vaccine is no longer used in the US, which suggests that the chain of transmission has begun abroad. The United States uses an inactivated polio vaccine that is injected into the leg or arm. This vaccine uses a strain of the virus that does not replicate, so people who receive it cannot pass the virus on to others.
The CDC recommends that all children be vaccinated against polio. New York State requires all children to be vaccinated before they start school.