the project / study 3
Landscape as a direct source of human exposure
Within this part of our research we will be performing three different studies to investigate whether or not the landscape is a direct source of human exposure to Campylobacter.
Campylobacter in people is very seasonal. Disease increases sharply in late spring, reaching a peak in early summer. However, this varies in different areas of the country. In NW England the seasonal peak is very pronounced, but is less so in East Anglia. To investigate this marked difference we are looking for Campylobacter in the environment in various rural settings.
Food Safety Hazard Perception Study
As part of the Enigma Study Hazard Perception work, the team at the University of Manchester has developed a Watch-&-Click Video challenge that tests food safety awareness. Find Out More.
This study focuses on people and recreation in rural and urban parks. We are exploring public awareness of pathogen risks associated with urban park and countryside recreational behaviours.
We are visiting parks in the North West and inviting park visitors to take part in a survey which includes a watch-&-click video challenge. Find out more.
You do not have to be in a park to do this challenge – You can take part in the Parklife study online:
We are investigating Campylobacter in children up to five years of age. To understand better where children pick up Campylobacter we will be ask parents/guardians to complete a questionnaire which captures places they have visited, their activities and foods eaten. As part of this we are developing new ways to trigger peoples’ memories.
Using these studies we will investigate the following hypotheses:
- Seasonal patterns in human Campylobacter cases arise from variation in patterns of human exposure in the landscape, coinciding with seasonal variation in pathogen load arising from variations in land use and weather;
- Members of the public do not perceive health hazards associated with countryside use;
- Throughout the year, children in rural areas are more frequently infected with Campylobacter from the environment because they have more frequent contact with soils and water than do children in urban areas;
- During the seasonal peak a higher proportion of human disease is caused by genotypes found in the environment because of greater environmental exposure and higher levels excreted by sources in the countryside.