Effects of coronavirus infections in children

Emerg Infect Dis. 2010 Feb;16(2):183-8. doi: 10.3201/eid1602.090469.


The isolation of the coronavirus (CoV) identified as the cause of severe acute respiratory syndrome and the detection of 2 new human CoVs (HCoV-NL63 and HCoV-HKU1) have led to studies of the epidemiology and clinical and socioeconomic effects of infections caused by all HCoVs, including those known since the late 1960s (HCoV-229E and HCoV-OC43). HCoV infections can be associated with respiratory and extrarespiratory manifestations, including central nervous system involvement. Furthermore, unlike other RNA viruses, HCoVs can easily mutate and recombine when different strains infect the same cells and give rise to a novel virus with unpredictable host ranges and pathogenicity. Thus, circulating HCoVs should be closely monitored to detect the spread of particularly virulent strains in the community at an early stage and to facilitate the development of adequate preventive and therapeutic measures.

Publication types

  • Editorial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Coronavirus / genetics
  • Coronavirus / isolation & purification*
  • Coronavirus / pathogenicity
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / virology*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Population Surveillance*
  • Recombination, Genetic
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / virology*
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies
  • Virulence / genetics