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, 4 (3), 627-42

Enteric Adenoviruses


Enteric Adenoviruses

I Uhnoo et al. Baillieres Clin Gastroenterol.


Human adenoviruses are classified into 47 serotypes and six subgenera (A-F) with different tropisms. In recent years adenovirus type 40 (Ad40) and 41 (Ad41) of subgenus F have been shown to be causative agents in enteric infections, which is second in importance only to rotaviruses as a cause of infantile gastroenteritis. Infection with EAds occurs worldwide and has been associated with 4-17% of cases of diarrhoea in children. AD40 and Ad41 primarily affect young children less than 2 years of age and occur throughout the year. The clinical characteristics include watery diarrhoea accompanied by vomiting, low grade fever and mild dehydration. A distinct feature of EAds infection is the protracted diarrhoea (mean 8.6 and 12.2 days for Ad40 and Ad41, respectively). Respiratory symptoms are infrequent. Serotypes Ad40 and Ad41 differ from all other (established) adenoviruses by being unable to replicate in conventional cell cultures. These fastidious viruses only grow in selected cell lines, 293 cells being the most commonly used. In spite of the difficulty of isolating Ad40 and Ad41, they can be directly identified and typed by ELISA and solid-phase immune electron microscopy. The amount of viral DNA in stool specimens is sufficient for identification by DNA restriction and dot-blot assays. The recent development of highly sensitive and specific monoclonal antibody-based ELISAs enable accurate diagnosis of adenovirus gastroenteritis in routine work and make possible the evaluation of the role of the enteric adenoviruses in diarrhoeal disease in the developing countries.

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