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Genetic diversity of human parechoviruses in stool samples, Germany

Pietsch, Corinna, Liebert, Uwe G.
Infection, genetics, and evolution 2019 v.68 pp. 280-285
RNA, children, disease severity, enteropathogens, feces, gastroenteritis, genetic variation, genotype, genotyping, infancy, infants, nucleotide sequences, patients, phylogeny, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, signs and symptoms (animals and humans), Germany, United Kingdom
Human parechoviruses (HPeV) are ubiquitous and mainly occur in early infancy. They are known to cause various clinical manifestations including acute gastroenteritis. To gain insight into the diversity of circulating HPeV genotypes, stool samples from patients (n = 539) with clinical signs of infectious gastroenteritis which showed negative results for other common viral and bacterial enteric pathogens were obtained during three years, 2008 to 2010. Real-time RT-PCR showed HPeV RNA in 34 (6.3%) of the samples. The HPeV detection rate was highest (8.8%) in samples derived from infants and young children under the age of two years. Genotyping was based on VP3/VP1 junction nucleic acid sequences and revealed predominant HPeV-1B (n = 16) and HPeV-3 (n = 12) strains. Those prevailed minor HPeV-6 (n = 3) as well as HPeV-2, −4 and −5 (n = 1, each) strains. To ascertain the assigned HPeV-2 genotype of uncommon strain LPZ04-2008, analysis of complete coding sequences was performed. In complete VP1 analysis strain LPZ04-2008 showed 81.2% nucleic acid identity with HPeV-2 reference strain Williamson. In phylogenetic analysis VP1 of strain LPZ04–2008 clustered with a recent HPeV-2 strain from the UK. Regarding clinical manifestations, severe disease occurred HPeV-1B, −3 and − 6 infections. In conclusion, this paper a high genetic diversity of HPeV in stool samples, including rare strains. The investigation adds data on the whole coding sequences of the rare HPeV-2 strain. Genotyping results confirm previously reported association of more severe illness with HPeV-3 and HPeV-1B strains.