Case report: detection of parvovirus B19 in a skin biopsy of a patient with erythema infectiosum

J Med Virol. 1994 Jun;43(2):171-4. doi: 10.1002/jmv.1890430214.


We report the findings on a skin biopsy taken from a child acutely infected with parvovirus B19 showing the typical exanthematous rash. By indirect immunofluorescence with a monoclonal antibody to B19, viral capsid proteins were detected in epidermal cells localized mainly in the stratum basale. Additionally, B19 DNA was detected in epidermal cells of the stratum basale by in situ hybridization using a Dig-labelled B19 DNA probe. The detection of viral capsid proteins and viral DNA suggests the presence of complete viral particles. It is therefore concluded that B19 plays a direct role in the formation of the exanthematous rash in erythema infection.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Child, Preschool
  • Erythema Infectiosum / microbiology*
  • Erythema Infectiosum / pathology
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Humans
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Male
  • Parvovirus B19, Human / isolation & purification*
  • Skin / microbiology*
  • Skin / pathology