Genetics, recombination and clinical features of human rhinovirus species C (HRV-C) infections; interactions of HRV-C with other respiratory viruses

Wisdom, A., Kutkowska, A.E., McWilliam Leitch, E.C., Gaunt, E., Templeton, K., Harvala, H. and Simmonds, P. (2009) Genetics, recombination and clinical features of human rhinovirus species C (HRV-C) infections; interactions of HRV-C with other respiratory viruses. PLoS ONE, 4(12), e8518. (doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0008518)

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Abstract

To estimate the frequency, molecular epidemiological and clinical associations of infection with the newly described species C variants of human rhinoviruses (HRV), 3243 diagnostic respiratory samples referred for diagnostic testing in Edinburgh were screened using a VP4-encoding region-based selective polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for HRV-C along with parallel PCR testing for 13 other respiratory viruses. HRV-C was the third most frequently detected behind respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and adenovirus, with 141 infection episodes detected among 1885 subjects over 13 months (7.5%). Infections predominantly targeted the very young (median age 6–12 months; 80% of infections in those <2 years), occurred throughout the year but with peak incidence in early winter months. HRV-C was detected significantly more frequently among subjects with lower (LRT) and upper respiratory tract (URT) disease than controls without respiratory symptoms; HRV-C mono-infections were the second most frequently detected virus (behind RSV) in both disease presentations (6.9% and 7.8% of all cases respectively). HRV variants were classified by VP4/VP2 sequencing into 39 genotypically defined types, increasing the current total worldwide to 60. Through sequence comparisons of the 5′untranslated region (5′UTR), the majority grouped with species A (n = 96; 68%, described as HRV-Ca), the remainder forming a phylogenetically distinct 5′UTR group (HRV-Cc). Multiple and bidirectional recombination events between HRV-Ca and HRV-Cc variants and with HRV species A represents the most parsimonious explanation for their interspersed phylogeny relationships in the VP4/VP2-encoding region. No difference in age distribution, seasonality or disease associations was identified between HRV-Ca and HRV-Cc variants. HRV-C-infected subjects showed markedly reduced detection frequencies of RSV and other respiratory viruses, providing evidence for a major interfering effect of HRV-C on susceptibility to other respiratory virus infections. HRV-C's disease associations, its prevalence and evidence for interfering effects on other respiratory viruses mandates incorporation of rhinoviruses into future diagnostic virology screening.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Leitch, Dr Carol
Authors: Wisdom, A., Kutkowska, A.E., McWilliam Leitch, E.C., Gaunt, E., Templeton, K., Harvala, H., and Simmonds, P.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:PLoS ONE
Publisher:Public Library of Science
ISSN:1932-6203
ISSN (Online):1932-6203
Published Online:30 December 2009
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2009 The Authors
First Published:First published in PLoS ONE 4(12):e8518
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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