INTRODUCTION: Human metapneumovirus (hMPV), first isolated in 2001 in the Netherlands, was identified as a respiratory etiologic agent in a variety of regions. A number of reports have described evidence of hMPV infection on mainland China. However, the description of the seroepidemiology of hMPV infection remains limited.
OBJECTIVE: We aimed to define the seropositivity of hMPV immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies in different age groups of children in Chongqing, China.
METHODS: The specificity of the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was first validated by using respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)-infected cell lysates subtracted sera and Western blotting based on anti-hMPV animal serum. This assay was subsequently used to determine the presence of IgG antibodies to hMPV and RSV in 325 serum samples from children aged 0 to 6 years.
RESULTS: There was no cross-reaction between the hMPV and RSV enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays observed in our system. Seropositivity of anti-hMPV IgG antibodies in children aged 0 to 5 months was 74.5%, 64% for children aged 6 to 11 months, 72.7% for children aged 12 to 23 months, 87.1% for children aged 24 to 35 months, and 90.3% for children 3 to 6 years old, respectively. The seropositivity of hMPV and RSV was considerably similar in almost all age groups.
CONCLUSIONS: hMPV seems to be a common and important respiratory pathogen in Chongqing's children. Almost all individuals had been exposed to hMPV by the age of 6 years.
Submitted by Xiaodong Zhao
- Copyright © 2008 by the American Academy of Pediatrics