Molecular epidemiology of respiratory syncytial virus among children and adults in India 2016 to 2018

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Virus Genes


Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common cause of respiratory tract infections among children less than 5 years of age and the elderly. This study intended to determine the circulating genotypes of RSV among severe acute respiratory illness (SARI) cases during the period 2016–2018 in India, among hospitalized acute febrile illness cases of age ranging from 1 to 65 years. Throat/nasopharyngeal swab samples were subjected for testing RSV and subgroups by real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), further sequencing and phylogenetic analysis were performed for the second hypervariable region of the G gene. RSV-A and B subtypes co-circulated during the years 2016, 2017, and 2018, with RSV-A as the dominant subtype in 2016, and RSV-B as the dominant subgroup in 2017 and 2018. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the circulating genotypes of RSV were GA2 (16/16), of RSV-A, and GB5 (23/23) of RSV-B in the South, North, and Northeast region of India during the period between 2016 and 2018. Here we report the first study comprising the distribution of RSV-A and B genotypes in the different geographic regions of India among children and adults during the year 2016 to 2018. We also report GA2.3.7 lineage of GA2 genotype for the first time in India to the best of our knowledge.

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