Molecular epidemiology of respiratory viruses in a paediatric cohort from Indonesia

Soh, Shirlena Wee Ling (2010) Molecular epidemiology of respiratory viruses in a paediatric cohort from Indonesia. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


Acute lower respiratory tract infections (ALRTIs) are a common cause of morbidity and mortality among children under 5 years of age and are found worldwide, with pneumonia as the most severe manifestation. Although the incidence of severe disease varies both between individuals and countries, there is still no clear understanding of what causes this variation. Studies of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) have traditionally not focused on viral causes of disease due to a paucity of diagnostic tools. However, with the emergence of molecular techniques, it is now known that viruses outnumber bacteria as the etiological agents of childhood CAP, especially in children under 2 years of age. The main objective of this study was to investigate viruses contributing to disease severity in cases of childhood ALRTI, using a two year cohort study following 2014 infants and children enrolled in Bandung, Indonesia. A total of 352 nasopharyngeal washes collected from 256 paediatric ALRTI patients were used for analysis. A subset of samples was screened using a novel microarray pathogen detection method that identified respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human metapneumovirus (hMPV) and human rhinovirus (HRV) in the samples. Real-time RT-PCR was used both for confirming and quantifying viruses found in the nasopharyngeal samples. Viral copy numbers were determined and normalised to the numbers of human cells collected with the use of 18S rRNA. Molecular epidemiology was performed for RSV A and hMPV using sequences to the glycoprotein gene and nucleoprotein gene respectively, to determine genotypes circulating in this Indonesian paediatric cohort. This study found that HRV (119/352; 33.8%) was the most common virus detected as the cause of respiratory tract infections in this cohort, followed by the viral pathogens RSV A (73/352; 20.7%), hMPV (30/352; 8.5%) and RSV B (12/352; 3.4%). Co-infections of more than two viruses were detected in 31 episodes (defined as an infection which occurred more than two weeks apart), accounting for 8.8% of the 352 samples tested or 15.4% of the 201 episodes with at least one virus detected. RSV A genotypes circulating in this population were predominantly GA2, GA5 and GA7, while hMPV genotypes circulating were mainly A2a (27/30; 90.0%), B2 (2/30; 6.7%) and A1 (1/30; 3.3%). This study found no evidence of disease severity associated either with a specific virus or viral strain, or with viral load. However, this study did find a significant association with co-infection of RSV A and HRV with severe disease (P = 0.006), suggesting that this may be a novel cause of severe disease.

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ID Code: 37309
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Hafner, Louise, Timms, Peter, & Hibberd, Martin
Keywords: respiratory viruses, molecular epidemiology, Indonesia
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Science and Technology
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 28 Sep 2010 01:43
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2011 20:00

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