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Clin Microbiol Infect. 2007 Aug;13(8):782-7. Epub 2007 May 4.

Genetic and antigenic analyses of enterovirus 71 isolates in Taiwan during 1998-2005.

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  • 1Faculty of Biotechnology and Laboratory Science in Medicine, Institute of Biotechnology in Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan.

Abstract

Enterovirus 71 (EV71) infections can lead to devastating clinical outcomes in children, with an increasing number of severe cases worldwide. The genetic and antigenic variability of EV71 strains isolated in Taiwan in 1998-2005 was evaluated using partial nucleotide sequence analysis of the VP1 gene and the neutralisation assay. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that most EV71 isolates from the 1998 epidemic belonged to sub-genogroup C2, with a minority belonging to sub-genogroup B4. Between 1999 and 2003, isolates belonging to sub-genogroup B4 predominated, followed by a change to sub-genogroup C4 in 2004 and 2005. Antibodies raised in rabbits or collected from infected patients were able to neutralise EV71 virus stocks at high dilutions, regardless of the sub-genogroup of the virus being challenged. The presence of phylogenetically distinct yet antigenically similar populations of EV71 in Taiwan is of concern in the context of herd immunity and vaccine development.

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