The second Infectious Intestinal Diseases study (IID2) estimated the incidence of norovirus in the UK at 47/1000 population (three million cases annually). Clinically significant norovirus was defined using a cycle threshold (ct) value of <30; a more stringent cut-off than used in diagnostic laboratories. The low infectious dose of norovirus means asymptomatic individuals potentially contribute to ongoing transmission. Using a less stringent but diagnostically relevant threshold increases the estimation of the population burden of norovirus infection by around 26% to 59/1000 person years (95% CI 52.32–64.98), equating to 3.7 million norovirus infections annually (3.3–4.1 million). With possible vaccines on the horizon for norovirus, having a good estimate of the total burden of norovirus infection, as well as symptomatic disease will be useful in helping to guide vaccination policy when candidate vaccines become available.
- Gastrointestinal infections
- Infectious diseases