Diagnosis of human metapneumovirus infection in immimosuppressed lung transplant recipients and children evaluated for pertussis

Ryan Dare, Sonali Sanghavi, Arlene Bullotta, Maria-Cristina Keightley, Kirsten St George, Robert M Wadowsky, David L Paterson, Kenneth R McCurry, Todd A Reinhart, Shahid Husain, Charles Rinaldo

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60 Citations (Scopus)


Human metapneumovirus (hMPV) is a recently discovered paramyxovirus that is known to cause respiratory tract infections in children and immunocompromised individuals. Given the difficulties of identifying hMPV by conventional culture, molecular techniques could improve the detection of this virus in clinical specimens. In this study, we developed a real-time reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) assay designed to detect the four genetic lineages of hMPV. This assay and a commercial real-time nucleic acid sequence-based amplification (NASBA) assay (bioMerieux, Durham, NC) were used to determine the prevalence of hMPV in 114 immunosuppressed asymptomatic and symptomatic lung transplant recipients and 232 pediatric patients who were being evaluated for pertussis. hMPV was detected in 4.3 of the immunosuppressed lung transplant recipients and in 9.9 of children evaluated for pertussis. Both RT-PCR and NASBA assays were efficient in detection of hMPV infection in respiratory specimens. Even though hMPV was detected in a small number of the lung transplant recipients, it was still the most prevalent etiologic agent detected in patients with respiratory symptoms. In both of these diverse patient populations, hMPV infection was the most frequent viral respiratory tract infection identified. Given our findings, infection with hMPV infection should be determined as part of the differential diagnosis of respiratory illnesses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)548 - 552
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes

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