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J Clin Virol. 2013 Sep;58(1):205-10. doi: 10.1016/j.jcv.2013.06.001. Epub 2013 Jun 28.

Human parechovirus type 3 central nervous system infections in Israeli infants.

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Infectious Diseases Unit, Rambam Health Care Campus, Haifa, Israel.



Human parechoviruses (HPeV) have been recognized as the causative agents of central nervous system (CNS) infection of infants and young children in different parts of the world. The role of HPeV in CNS infection of Israeli infants and children is unknown.


To assess the detection rate of HPeV in enterovirus RT-PCR-negative cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples obtained during the years 2007-2009 from children 0-5 years old with suspected CNS infection or from very young infants with unexplained fever in four medical centers in Israel.


A total of 367 CSF samples were retrospectively tested for the presence of HPeV RNA using nested RT-PCR assay. Positive samples were further typed on the basis of molecular sequencing. Retrospective analysis of the medical charts was performed.


HPeV3 RNA was detected in CSF obtained between May and September 2008 in 13 patients, all of whom were <3 months old (3.5% of all CSFs; 11.3% of all infants<3 months in 2008). The HPeV-positive CSF samples were without pleocytosis. All HPeV3-positive patients recovered without obvious short term sequelae.


HPeV infection could play an important role in summertime febrile/CNS illness in young infants during specific years with high HPeV activity. PCR detection of parechoviral RNA in CSF should be included in the diagnostic evaluation of fever or CNS infection of neonates and very young infants. The rapid identification of HPeV in CSF could curtail unnecessary empirical antibiotic treatment and shorten hospital stay in selected patients.


CNS; CSF; Central nervous system; HPeV; IQR; Infants; LOS; Neonate; Parechovirus; RT-PCR; UTI; Viral infections; WBC; central nervous system; cerebrospinal fluid; human parechovirus; interquartile ranges; length of stay; reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction; urinary tract infection; white blood cells

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