Characterization of antigenically and genetically similar influenza C viruses isolated in Japan during the 1999-2000 season

Epidemiol Infect. 2004 Aug;132(4):709-20. doi: 10.1017/s0950268804002146.


Between October 1999 and May 2000, a total of 28 strains of influenza C virus were isolated in four Japanese prefectures: Yamagata, Miyagi, Saitama and Hiroshima. Antigenic analysis showed that the 28 isolates were divided into three distinct antigenic groups, and viruses belonging to different antigenic groups were co-circulating in each of the four prefectures. Phylogenetic analysis of the seven protein genes demonstrated that the viruses having a similar genome composition spread in various areas of Japan during the same period. Furthermore, phylogenetic analysis showed that most of the influenza C viruses isolated in various areas of the world between the 1970s and 1980s were closely related to the contemporary Japanese viruses in all gene segments. These observations suggest that the influenza C viruses cause epidemics in some communities during the same season and that antigenically and genetically similar influenza C viruses spread throughout Japan and may be circulating worldwide.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease Outbreaks*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Influenza, Human / epidemiology*
  • Influenza, Human / etiology
  • Influenza, Human / virology*
  • Influenzavirus C / classification*
  • Influenzavirus C / genetics
  • Influenzavirus C / isolation & purification
  • Japan / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Nasopharynx / microbiology
  • Phylogeny
  • Seasons
  • Viral Proteins / genetics*


  • Viral Proteins