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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Severity of human rhinovirus infection in infants linked to maternal atopy

Human rhinoviruses (HRV) are known to be associated with asthma exacerbations in both children and adults. Additionally, bronchiolitis, which is usually associated with respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), is being associated with HRV as well. Typically, HRV is a viral infection associated with older children and has not been closely examined in infants with low risk for atopy.

Miller and colleagues in this month’s issue (J Allergy Clin Immunol 2011;127:883-891) examine the HRV burden in upper respiratory infections (URI) and bronchiolitis among children that had participated in the Tennessee Children’s Respiratory Initiative. They collected atopy risk information, clinical severity from hospital admission records, and performed type testing on the three HRV strains, A, B, and C.

Miller et al find that both URI and bronchiolitis in healthy infants are commonly caused by HRV. Maternal atopy and asthma were associated significantly with risk of more severe bronchiolitis, with maternal atopy conferring more than double the severity risk. Of the three strains of HRV, the newly described group, HRVC was very common and occurred more often in black infants thnt HRVA and HRVB. Infants infected with HRVB had higher severity scores and were more likely to require oxygen supplementation and have longer hospital stays.

The authors conclude that an infant’s susceptibility to severe HRV illness is significantly correlated to asthma and atopy susceptibility in the mother.

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1 comment:

  1. My friend mentioned to me your blog, so I thought I’d read it for myself. Very interesting insights, will be back for more! Jenny