The age-specific immunity to human parvovirus infection was estimated in Victoria, Australia using prospectively collected samples from the Royal Children's Hospital, the Royal Women's Hospital and the Australian Red Cross Blood Service and from sera stored at the Victorian Infectious Diseases Reference Laboratory (VIDRL). All testing was performed at VIDRL using a commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (Biotrin). Of the 824 sera tested, 28% of those drawn from people aged 0-9 years contained protective antibodies to human parvovirus. This rose to 51% in the next decade of life. There was then a slow rise to about 78% immunity over 50 years of age. An analysis of all requests for parvovirus serology at VIDRL from 1992 to 1998 suggested that parvovirus tended to occur in 4-year cycles, with 2 epidemic years followed by 2 endemic years. A review of published reports of parvovirus immunity suggested that parvovirus infection may be more common, with a correspondingly higher proportion of the community immune, in temperate as opposed to tropical countries.