Broadway’s Lawrence Clayton, Who Appeared in The Color Purple & Dreamgirls, Dies at 64

first_imgHis stage credits included touring productions of Dreamgirls as well as Jesus Christ Superstar and the 25th anniversary tour of Les Misérables, in which he took on the iconic musical theater roles of Judas Iscariot and Jean Valjean, respectively. Clayton’s additional Broadway credits included The High Rollers Social and Pleasure Club, Once Upon a Mattress, The Civil War, It Ain’t Nothin’ But the Blues and Bells Are Ringing.His screen credits included appearances on The Big C, The Equalizer, Elementary, Homeland and, most recently, a memorable 2019 episode of Pose in which he played the stepfather to Tony and Emmy winner Billy Porter’s character Pray Tell.Clayton is survived by his wife Linda and son Matthew. Lawrence Clayton(Photo: Emilio Madrid for Lawrence Clayton in a publicity photo for Dreamgirls (Photo by Martha Swope) View Comments Lawrence Clayton, who was last seen on Broadway in the Tony-winning revival of The Color Purple, has died at the age of 64. According to Deadline, he passed away on November 2 after a two-year battle with glioblastoma cancer.Born on October 10, 1956 in Mocksville, North Carolina, Clayton went on to study at North Carolina Central University. He made his Broadway debut in the Tony-winning musical Dreamgirls as the replacement for Obba Babatundé as Effie’s songwriting brother C.C. White.last_img read more

Welch backs Obama on national plan, Shumlin on Vermont’s approach

first_imgby Alicia Freese Representative Peter Welch, D-VT, is on board with President Barack Obama’s decision to allow individuals to extend their current health insurance plans for one year ‘ and with Governor Peter Shumlin’s preliminary decision to table a delay in implementation of Vermont’s mandatory health care exchange program.Obama needed to offer that one-year extension in order to keep his word, Welch said. The president had repeatedly said that Americans who like their health insurance plans could keep them under the Affordable Care Act, which was not true for plans that failed to meet minimum requirements.‘The bottom line is this is an issue that the president is addressing. He made a promise and a promise made is a promise kept,’ Welch said.The decision is also expected to bring Democratic lawmakers, who were threatening to break ranks with the White House, back into the fold.Welch said he thinks Congress needs to be fully committed to ‘rolling up our sleeves’ and fixing problems with the Affordable Care Act. To that end, he’s backing legislation drafted by House Democrats, which mirrors the executive order Obama announced Thursday. The GOP-led House is expected to vote it down.Beyond that, Welch said he didn’t plan to support other immediate legislative ‘fixes’ that are being floated in Congress.‘Right now the two priorities are the website ‘ that’s got to be operational ‘ and, number two, keeping the commitment the president made,’ Welch said.The House approved legislation Friday, drafted by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., that would allow people to continue to purchase new plans that don’t meet the ACA standards. Obama, whose order only permits people already on those plans to keep them for a year, has said he will veto Upton’s bill if it reaches his desk.Welch said that the bill ‘reintroduces a race to the bottom’ for insurance policies and would undermine the ACA.Vermont’s lone representative said he would defer to Shumlin on the decision to not permit Vermonters to extend their plans for a full year. And while he encouraged constituents to call his office if they are having problems with the exchange, he trusts that the Shumlin administration will remedy the situation.‘The state is really taking the lead on this,’ Welch said. ‘Of course I’m reading that there are some issues there, but right now most of the issues arising are being handled by the governor and the people in Montpelier.’last_img read more

1st Annual Made in Vermont Marketplace, this weekend, April 12-13

first_imgThe first annual Made in Vermont Marketplace will take place this weekend, April 12th & 13th, at the Blue Pavilion Building at the Champlain Valley Exposition in Essex Junction. This the only trade show in Vermont that showcases the wide variety of quality products made right here in the Green Mountains. The show will feature wood producers, specialty food products, Vermont’s finest spirits and so much more. This is your opportunity to come and enjoy browsing, tasting and purchasing products all under one roof. You will be able to meet and talk with each artisan, maker and manufacturer of these fine goods. With over 75 exhibits, you will discover products you did not know existed in Vermont. SEE LIST OF EXHIBITORS BELOW.The Made in Vermont Marketplace is open Saturday April 12th from 9 am until 6 pm and Sunday April 13th from 10 am until 4 pm.There will be raffle prizes given away every hour and a Vermont Teddy Bear giveaway as well. Vermont Teddy Bear will also be raffling off a giant Teddy Bear at the end of the show so don’t forget to fill out a raffle ticket. You do not have to be present to win the giant Teddy. Champlain Chocolates, our ticket sponsor, will be giving away one free coffee at their new restaurant in Burlington, the South End Kitchen on Pine Street. The coupon for the free coffee is on the back of each ticket. Parking is free thanks to our parking sponsor, Co-operative Insurance Companies of is external)Look Who Will Be Exhibiting! Bertek Systems, Inc.Birds in Wood, LLCBlake Hill PreservesBoyden Farm, LLCButterworks FarmCabot Creamery CooperativeCaledonia SpiritsChamplain OrchardsChimney ScrubberCobb Hill Frozen Yogurt LLPCommonwealth DairyCo-operative Insurance CompaniesCreative Labels of VermontCurve Trends MarketingEden Ice Cider CompanyExactBuiltElm Brook FarmFreedom FoodsFresh Tracks Farm Vineyard & WineryGrafton Village Cheese Co.Green Village SoapGrey Owl DesignGringo Jack’sHall Home Place Ice CIderHealthy Paws Barkery, LLCImageTek LabelsJed’s Maple ProductsJohnson Woolen MillsKimball Brook FarmMarla McQuistonMy Brigadeiro, LLCNorth Branch VineyardsSienna Fontaine IllustrationSignaramaSinclair MillworksSmugglers’ Notch DistillerySnow Farm VineyardSumptuous Syrups of VermontSweet Basil CardsThe Gourmet GalThird GenerationTrue North Granola, LLCVEDA/ VACC – Vermont Economic Development Authority/ Vermont Agricultural Credit CorporationVermont CreameryVermont DistillersVermont Drying RacksVermont PhotoInkjetVermont Rolling PinsVermont Smoke and CureVermont SpiritsVermont Teddy BearVermont Trophy & EngravingVermont Verde Antique LLCVERY TEMPTING COMPANIES LLCVT Agency of Agriculture, Food & MarketsVT Agency of Commerce and Community DevelopmentWCAX-TV3WhistlePig Straight Rye WhiskeyWoodchuck Hard Cider CompanyWozz! Kitchen Creationslast_img read more

High Mowing founder named Vermont Small Business Person of the Year

first_imgVermont Business Magazine The Small Business Administration announced the 2016 Vermont small business award winners today. The top prize, the Vermont Small Business Person of the Year, is awarded to Tom Stearns, High Mowing Organic Seeds founder and owner. He is being recognized for growing his company, increasing sales, employee growth and contributing to the local community. High Mowing Organic Seeds is a farm-based company located in Wolcott that produces and distributes vegetable, flower and herb seeds throughout the US and Canada. High Mowing Organic Seeds is the first organic company guaranteeing all of its seeds are non-genetically modified organism verified.Tom Stearns, High Mowing Organic Seeds founder and owner.Stearns launched his company in 1996, and in its first year sales were $2,000.  By 2001, business had grown to such an extent Stearns began to contract with other local farmers to grow his seeds. Twenty years later his company has grown to be one of the top organic seed companies in the U.S., and today has more than 60 employees.The other 2016 Vermont winners are Mansfield Heliflight as the Exporter of the Year, Shat Acres Highland Cattle as the Family-Owned Small Business of the Year, Sweet Crunch Bakeshop & Catering Company as the Woman-Owned Business of the Year, Power Play Sports as the Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Snug Life as the Micro-Enterprise of the Year and Desai Management Consulting as the Minority-Owned Business of the Year.Each year since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week, which recognizes the critical contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners.“Small business owners represent the best of the best and showcase daily their entrepreneurial spirit and what it takes to be successful in today’s evolving and competitive business environment,” said Maria Contreras-Sweet, administrator of the Small Business Administration.Stearns and the 49 other state winners are invited to attend the ceremonies in Washington, D.C. May 1 to 2 where they will be awarded their individual awards, along with the naming of the 2016 National Small Business Person of the Year. “There are more than 28 million small businesses serving as the economic engine of our country, employing half of the private sector and creating two out of three net new jobs. If our small business sector was a country, its output would rank number three above Germany and Japan. I’m looking forward to welcoming these talented entrepreneurs to their nation’s capital and celebrating their stories to shine a light on American ingenuity and innovation,” said Contreras-Sweet.In the spring, all of the Vermont small business winners will receive their awards during the 2016 Vermont Small Business Awards Ceremony cohosted by Vermont Business Magazine at the Shelburne Museum Pizzagalli Center for Art and Education located in Shelburne, Vt. The ceremony is open to the public and registration will be available in May.2016 Small Business Person of the Year WinnersALABAMA               Xiomara Hernandez Bracken                         Owner                                                                        Bouncing Parties, Inc.                                              ALASKA                               Connie Core-Dubay                                                   CEO/OwnerCold Spot Feeds, Inc.ARIZONA                             Paul A. Smiley                                                                                   President                                                                                Sonoran Technology and Professional                       Services, LLC                                                            ARKANSAS             Regina Renee Radke                                                 CEO                                                                                       Wade Stuart Radke                                                   COO                                                                                      Galley Support InnovationsCALIFORNIA                      Helen Margaret Russell                                                                                  Co-Founder and CEO                                               Brooke Jean McDonnell                                            Co-Founder and PresidentEquator Coffees and Teas, Inc.COLORADO            Reed Howard Silberman                                           Founder/CEO                                                            Ink Monstr                                                                             CONNECTICUT                 Peter Newman                                                           CEO                                                                                       Victoria Newman                                                                   Executive DirectorGreenwich Education GroupDELAWARE                        Chris J. Bisaha                                                                       Joseph A. Baker                                                                                 Co-OwnersHenlopen City Oyster HouseDISTRICT OF COLUMBIA                                                                      Robert C. Palmer                                                                   CEO                                                                                       Creative Business Solutions, Inc.FLORIDA                 Sherry L. Acanfora-Ruohomaki                                Owner/President                                                                    K9 Kampus LLC                                                                   GEORGIA    Catherine A. Downey                                                CEO                                                                                       CATMEDIA, Inc.                                                                 GUAM                       David J. John                                                             President                                                                                ASC Trust CorporationHAWAII                    Raymond Jardine Jr.                                                  Chairman & CEO                                                                  Native Hawaiian Veterans, LLC                               IDAHO                       Enrique F. Contreras                                                  Ana M. PazOwnersConpaz Inc. dba Enrique’s Mexican RestaurantILLINOIS                  Dwayne Steven Jackson                                            President & CEO                                                                   Software Tech Enterprises, Inc.INDIANABaziel W. Vrient                                                                    President                                                                                Albert W. VrientOperations ManagerAgdia, Inc.IOWA             Anthony D. Halsted                                                  Owner                                                                        Hoover’s Hatchery Co., LLC                                    KANSAS                   Roger Lee Ward IIIDana Marie WardOwnersGreat Day Moving (Marathon Moving & Delivery LLC)KENTUCKY                        David Allen Dafoe                                                    Founder/CEO                                                            8th Street Ventures                                                     Dba Flavorman, dba Distilled Spirits                      Epicenter                             LOUISIANA Angela O’Byrne                                                                     President/Owner                                                                    Perez, APCMAINE                                  Margo Walsh                                                              Owner                                                                        Maine Works LLC                                                     MARYLAND                        Patrick Babasola Munis                                             CEO                                                                                       NewWave Telecom & Technologies, Inc.MASSACHUSETTS                                                                                    Robert Jacob George                                                             Founder, President and CEO                                                StratComm, Inc.                                                                                MICHIGAN              Russell Beaver                                                           President                                                                                RB Construction Company                                       MINNESOTA                       Gloria Jean Freeman                                                  CEO                                                                                       Olu’s Home/Olu’s Center                                          MISSISSIPPI                        Mike PornovetsOwnerEverything Kayak LLCMISSOURI                David Laurence BaileyFounder & PresidentBaileys’ RestaurantsMONTANA               Greg Thayer                                                               CEO                                                                                       Eugene Thayer                                                                       DirectorMontana Merchandising, Inc.                        Dba Montana Milling, Inc.NEBRASKA             Yolanda F. Diaz                                                                     Member/Owner                                                                      Little Miss Fashion LLC                                            NEVADA                  Bradley J. BurdsallOwner and OperatorThe Egg WorksNEW HAMPSHIRE             Elie El-Chalfoun                                                        Owner/OperatorMega-XNEW JERSEY                      Charles Olivo                                                             Founder and Principal                                    Stonefield Engineering and Design LLCNEW MEXICO   Karl S. Halpert                                                           President & CEO                                                       Private Label Select Ltd. Co.                        NEW YORK Tammy Ann Loewy                                       Wynde Kate ReeseOwnersGreen Goddess Foods LLCNORTH CAROLINACharles Ashton CreechPresidentThomas Howard ChappellVice President – MaintenancePlus TeamNS Aviation, LLC dba North State AviationNORTH DAKOTAJon Simmers                                                                           CEO                                                                                                   Bismarck Aero Center                                                                                              OHIO              Sally Hughes                                                  CEO                                                                           Caster Connection                                         OKLAHOMAEllis “Lanny” McIntosh                                 Founding Principal, CEO                              The McIntosh Group                                     OREGON      Jeremy MurfinGeoff MetsJohnpaul SimonetOwners/Members5.S.G. LLC dba Five Star GuitarsPENNSYLVANIA   Dr. Wei-Shin Lai                                                                    Chief Executive Officer                                                        AcousticSheep LLC                                                  PUERTO RICO                    Fernando J. Rodriguez                                                           President                                                                                Prime Janitorial Service Corp.                        RHODE ISLAND                 Thomas Parsons Kellogg III                                      President                                                                                Parsons Kellogg LLC                                                SOUTH CAROLINA                       JoAnne LaBounty                                          President                                                                                Spartanburg Meat Processing Co., Inc.SOUTH DAKOTA               Janet R. Eining                                                                       Owner                                                                        Cellular Only Connection, Inc.TENNESSEETerence Andrew Douglas                                          President                                                                                Alliant CorporationTEXASYolanda Arriola                                                                     President and CEOSouthwest University at El PasoUTAHJay Benjamin BroadbentPresidentAlpine Home Medical Equipment LLCVERMONT               Thomas M.L. Stearns                                                 PresidentHigh Mowing Organic SeedsVIRGIN ISLANDS              Brianne B. Beatty                                                      Ryan B. Skinner                                                                     OwnersFlagship, LLCVIRGINIA    Caroline Anne Taylor                                                             RN-President                                                             Taylor Made Diagnostics, Inc.WASHINGTON       James “Kiwi” Ferris                                                   President                                                                                Edensaw Woods, Ltd.                                                           WEST VIRGINIA    Arria Hines                                                                             President & CEO                                                                   Allegheny Science & Technology Corp.                    WISCONSIN             Mark Matthiae                                                           CEO                                                                                       Crystal Finishing Systems, Inc.         WYOMINGAnthony Andrew AguireePresidentTriple A Building Services, Inc.last_img read more

With original concept falling through, owner looking for new restaurant to go in at 47th and Mission

first_imgThe Roeland Park building that sat across the street from Taco Republic is now a pile of rubble.Demolition, a future restaurant, more parking and even food trucks were part of the discussion about one of Roeland Park’s hottest corners – the southwest edge of 47th and Mission Road.Demolition has begun on the office buildings at the site and is expected to be complete this week.But don’t expect construction to begin on a new restaurant yet. Tony Krsnich, president of Flint Hills Holdings, which purchased the property, told the Roeland Park City Council on Monday that he is still working to find a restaurateur for the site. He told the City Council that he has talked with restauranteurs for concepts that include a sushi restaurant or a wood-fired grill but those ideas have not materialized.In December, he indicated to the Roeland Park City Council that Bread & Butter Concepts, the company that runs Taco Republic as well as BRGR and Urban Table, was likely to be the restaurant partner for the site. That deal appears to have fallen through.However, Krsnich said that he’s more determined than ever to find a restaurant for the site.“We couldn’t be more bullish on the project but we are back to the drawing board,” he said.In the meantime, Krsnich requested that the City Council loosen parking restrictions at the site. He has an existing parking lease agreement with Taco Republic, which is across the street in Kansas City. Kan., to provide 12 spaces for the restaurant. Krsnich asked for “as many parking spots as possible” while he continues to search for a restaurant at the site.“Our livelihood for the success of this project is going to be predicated on the success of Taco Republic,” he said.The City Council ultimately agreed to allow Krsnich to continue using 12 spots on the site for up to one year. But the governing body made it clear that anything beyond 12 spaces would have to go through a more detailed special zoning process just as other developers are required to do.That’s, in part, because a parking lot without a structure is not allowed in that area.City Councilors also expressed concern that a promising corner could turn into a non-revenue producing parking lot for a restaurant in another city.“We’re merely the parking lot for the Kansas City restaurant and I don’t see what benefit that would have to any of the parties involved other than Kansas City, Kan. and the Taco Republic,” said City Councilor Jennifer Gunby.Increasing visibility for the area is important, she said. But she was concerned that customers would park and take their wallets and sales tax into another city.Others expressed concern that the parking lot could be a long-term problem.Krsnich said he has talked to homeowners in the area about temporarily using some of the lot for food trucks until a restaurant can be developed. The response, he said, was favorable. The possibility would allow the city to collect sales tax. He emphasized that food trucks were not part of his long-term plan because that wouldn’t pay enough to cover his expenses.“We need the brick and mortar restaurant, Krsnich said. “We just obviously can’t force it. We can’t bring a restauranteur out of thin air.”However, he hasn’t formally presented a request for food trucks and city administrators said there are no written provisions for food truck in the city code.Several City Councilors urged the developer to seek additional input from the 47th and Mission Road Committee, a multi-jurisdictional advisory group composed of members from Westwood, Roeland Park and Wyandotte County’s Unified Government.last_img read more

Rise Southern Biscuits & Righteous Chicken debuts at Village Shops in Prairie Village

first_imgRise Chicken opened Saturday in Prairie Village.The first Rise restaurant location west of the Mississippi opened in Prairie Village Saturday — and judging by the lines out the door it drew its opening weekend, there’s plenty of appetite for Southern style biscuits and fried chicken here in the Midwest.Founded in 2012 in North Carolina, Rise features a menu centered on made-from-scratch biscuits. The restaurant has options with fried chicken on a biscuit, sandwiches on a biscuit, and staples like biscuits and gravy. Additionally, Rise has a selection of sweet rolls, donuts and coffee beverages.The new location is at the Village Shops on Tomahawk Drive in the space vacated earlier this year by the French Market, which moved two doors down.Rise Prairie Village is open 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. seven days a week.last_img read more

Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Gophers’ Antoine Winfield Jr. in NFL Draft

first_imgTampa Bay Buccaneers select Gophers’ Antoine Winfield Jr. in NFL DraftWinfield was chosen with the 45th overall pick.Kamaan RichardsGophers Head Coach P.J. Fleck converses with Defensive Back Antoine Winfield Jr. at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida on Wednesday, Jan. 1. Minnesota holds a 24-17 lead over Auburn heading into the third quarter of the Outback Bowl. (Kamaan Richards / Minnesota Daily) Nick JungheimApril 24, 2020Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintAlthough no team drafted safety Antoine Winfield Jr. during the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft on Thursday, he did not have to wait much longer. Winfield heard his name called Friday night. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected Winfield with the No. 13 pick of the draft’s second round, making him the 45th overall selection in this years’ draft. It is the highest any Gopher has gone in the NFL Draft since Ra’Shede Hageman was selected 37th overall in 2014. Minnesota can expect to have a few more players chosen in this draft, but it is no surprise that Winfield went first.“He’s got natural instincts and he is so aggressive” Gophers head coach P.J. Fleck said in media availability before the draft. “He loves the game. You talk about a good teammate, he loves the game, is going the play the game the right way, respect the teammates.”Winfield gained national recognition for his outstanding play in 2019, helping Minnesota to an 11-2 record. He led the Big Ten with seven interceptions and ranked first on the team with 85 total tackles. After the season, he was named the Gophers’ first unanimous All-American since 2005. “You are getting a relentless football player, with an incredibly high IQ,” Fleck said. “You are getting a linebacker-type tackler. You are getting a cornerback coverage person. And then you are getting a wide receiver with the catch radius. So you are getting all of those things and then you are getting one of the smartest players on our team.”A redshirt sophomore in 2019, Winfield elected to forego his final two years of eligibility to enter the draft. Winfield spent four seasons as a part of the program, but missed eight games in 2017 and 2018 with injuries.Scouts have praised Winfield for his versatility and athleticism. He flashed at the NFL Scouting Combine in February, running a 4.45-second 40-yard dash.Poised to make his NFL debut next season, Winfield will carry on the family legacy his father, Antoine Winfield Sr. began. Winfield Sr. was selected in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft after a stand-out career at Ohio State, playing 14 NFL seasons with the Buffalo Bills and Minnesota Vikings.last_img read more

Cassidy Turley Completes Sale Of Former Jerry’s Audio Building On Camelback

first_imgCassidy Turley completed the sale of the former Jerry’s Audio building at 600 E. Camelback Rd. in Phoenix.Qamnet, LLC purchased the 15,000 SF building in an all cash purchase for $955,000. Chris Hollenbeck with Cassidy Turley’s Retail Group negotiated the sale on behalf of the owner, Paying Cash for, LLC of Phoenix.The building has more than 200 feet of frontage on Camelback and includes office, showroom and warehouse space.“This property is ideally located, with signage and visibility to a traffic count of over 82,000 cars daily,” Hollenbeck said. “It was perfect for a retail or office user looking to expand their brand in the heart of the Camelback Corridor.”Qamnet is a privately held Phoenix-based telephone, telegraph and fiber optics apparatus manufacturing company founded in 2008. The company is relocating from a leased office on 44th St. and Camelback.last_img read more

Days of work in tourism in Osijek, Knin and Zagreb

first_imgOrganized by the Ministry of Labor and Pension System, the Ministry of Tourism, the Croatian Employment Service, the Croatian Tourist Board, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, the Croatian Chamber of Crafts, the Croatian Employers ‘Association and the Hotel Employers’ Association, Tourism Job Days 2017 is organized in three cities: Osijek , Knin and Zagreb.The project was created with the aim of ensuring better visibility of occupations in tourism and employment opportunities provided by the tourism sector. Holding a Job Day in tourism is an opportunity to promote jobs in tourism and motivate all those who are looking for a job, whether they have worked in tourism or not, and young people who are just entering the labor market. About 10.000 visitors, the unemployed, high school graduates and many others are expected.The activities of the one-day Job Days in tourism will be held in Osijek, March 07, 2017 from 9.00 a.m. to 17.00 p.m. (sports hall Gradski vrt, kneza Trpimira 23, Osijek), u Zagreb, March 14 i Knin, 21 March 2017, which will include the presentation of employers at the stands, panel discussions and presentation of examples of good practice. The Ministry of Labor and Pension System will intensify the promotion of active labor market policy measures related to employment, training and education in tourism and other redefined active employment policy measures .The Ministry of Tourism will present a tender and hold information workshops for “Improving the access of vulnerable groups to the labor market in the tourism and hospitality sector”, co-financed by the European Social Fund. Through this tender, grants from the European Social Fund in the total amount of HRK 31.500.000 were provided for adult education institutions and associations in the tourism and hospitality sector. The lowest grant amount that can be awarded to an individual project is HRK 500.000, while the highest amount that can be awarded to an individual project is HRK 2.000.000.The call for project proposals “Improving the access of vulnerable groups to the labor market in the tourism and hospitality sector” will be funded under Operational Program Effective Human Resources 2014-2020. Through projects aimed at the unemployed, people with disabilities, under 25 and over 54, tourism professionals and lecturers in educational institutions, the main goal is to increase the employability of vulnerable groups through education and training, to integrate them into the market work in the tourism and hospitality sector.RELATED NEWS:PUBLIC CALL: IMPROVING THE ACCESS OF VULNERABLE GROUPS TO THE LABOR MARKET IN THE TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY SECTORNEW MEASURES FOR ACTIVE EMPLOYMENT POLICYlast_img read more

Study: Pigs susceptible to deadly Ebola strain

first_imgMay 13, 2011 (CIDRAP News) – Canadian researchers have shown that an Ebola virus species that can kill humans can also infect pigs and spread among them, raising the specter of Ebola virus as a potential foodborne pathogen.The researchers infected two groups of pigs with a high dose of the Zaire Ebola virus (“ZEBOV”), a strain that is up to 90% fatal in humans, according to a report published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases. The pigs became ill to varying degrees, with severe signs in some cases, and they transmitted the virus to other pigs that were previously unexposed.A US expert who wrote a commentary on the findings said the probability of Ebola virus becoming a foodborne pathogen is small but can’t be dismissed for now.Pigs and Ebola have been linked once before, notes Daniel G. Bausch of the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in the commentary. In the Philippines in 2008, pigs on two farms were found to be infected with Reston Ebola, or “REBOV,” a strain that does not sicken humans. That strain was originally identified in monkeys at a breeding facility in the Philippines. The Philippines pigs had a respiratory illness, but it was not clear if the disease was due to Ebola or to another virus the pigs were infected with, Bausch explains.Severely sick pigs In the new study, researchers from the Public Health Agency of Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency used two groups of young pigs confined in high-containment cubicles. In the first experiment, six pigs were inoculated with ZEBOV in their nostrils, eyes, and mouths. Two other pigs, housed separately, were inoculated with saline solution as a control.In a second experiment, three pigs were inoculated with the virus in the same way as the first group. A day later, four other pigs were put in the same cubicle with them to see if the virus would spread.All the inoculated pigs became ill with a fever within 4 days, had labored breathing, and stopped eating, among other signs, according to the report. The clinical course of disease was less severe in the transmission experiment. In general, however, the virus reproduced abundantly, mainly in the pigs’ respiratory tract, causing severe lung disease as shown on necropsy.The pigs shed the virus from their oral and nasal mucosa for up to 14 days after infection, and in the transmission experiment, all the pigs placed with the inoculated pigs became infected.The study “demonstrates that domesticated pigs are susceptible to ZEBOV infection following mucosal challenge and develop a respiratory disease with a clinical manifestation that can be severe,” the report says. “This observation raises the possibility that pigs are capable of shedding relatively high viral loads into the environment.”The researchers comment that the disease in the pigs was primarily respiratory and therefore could be mistaken for other porcine respiratory diseases. In contrast, Ebola fever in primates typically affects multiple organs, they said.From pigs to humans?In the commentary, Bausch observes that in the case of the Philippines pigs infected with REBOV, six farm workers had serologic evidence of past infection with that virus. That finding suggests that pigs could serve as “accidental hosts” and transmit REBOV or ZEBOV to humans, he says.But he adds that among more than 800 people exposed to the Reston strain, no one has been known to get sick, and there has been no sign of pigs playing a role in any Ebola outbreak so far.As for the possibility of risk from Ebola-tainted meat, Bausch notes that ZEBOV transmission in Africa has been linked to the hunting and consumption of “bushmeat” (nonhuman primates as food). But infection in people who had contact only with meat procured by others has not been reported, and there is no risk from eating cooked food.These facts “should assuage any sense of panic regarding EBOV [Ebola virus] as a potential foodborne pathogen, but the possibility cannot yet be dismissed,” Bausch writes. One concern is that REBOV, though apparently harmless for healthy adult males, might be pathogenic for more vulnerable groups such as the elderly or immunocompromised people.Bausch also comments that the susceptibility of pigs to Ebola also could be seen as an opportunity for bioterrorists wanting to disrupt the food supply or infect humans.He concludes that it would be premature to restrict the movement of pigs as an Ebola precaution, but “targeting exporters in endemic and high-risk areas could be warranted if continued surveillance indicates a risk.”See also: Kobinger GP, Leung A, Neufeld J, et al. Replication, pathogenicity, shedding, and transmission of Zaire ebolavirus in pigs. J Infect Dis 2011; early online publication May 12 [Abstract]Bausch DG. Ebola virus has a foodborne pathogen? Cause for consideration, not panic. J Infect Dis 2011; early online publication May 12 [Full text]May 13 Infectious Diseases Society of America news releaselast_img read more