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Detection of Respiratory Virus

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Detection of Respiratory Viruses Article by: James B. Mahony, Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine, Regional Virology and Chlamydiology Laboratory, St. Joseph's Healthcare-Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Access to this content is available to Ward's World readers for free from McGraw Hill's AccessScience, an award-winning, digital STEM resource containing exclusive articles written by expert scientists and engineers; biographies of well-known scientific figures; science news, videos, and animations; and much, much more. Instructors can use AccessScience to guide students on their research project journeys, to help students understand scientific concepts, to support distance learning efforts, in flipped classroom approaches, and in countless other ways. Ward's World and AccessScience have partnered to offer educators a no-obligation, free trial subscription to AccessScience. Request your free trial today to discover how valuable AccessScience can be for you and your students! Get your free trial now. The process of identifying the presence of viruses that cause respiratory ailments. The detection of respiratory viruses greatly concerns epidemiologists and physicians. Acute respiratory diseases account for an estimated 75% of all acute morbidities in nonindustrial- ized countries, and most of these are caused by viruses. Upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) are among the most common infections in children, occurring 3 to 8 times per year in children under 5 years of age, and often causing acute asthma exacerbations or acute middle ear infections. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Vital Statistics Report indicates that there are 12–32 million episodes of URTIs annually in children under 2 years of age. Viral respiratory tract infections can be caused by numerous types of viruses. These include influenza A and B, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) types A and B, parainfluenza virus (types 1–4), numerous adenoviruses, the "common cold" viruses (including various coronaviruses and rhinoviruses), and a number of viruses discovered in the twenty-first century—metapneumovirus, various coronaviruses [including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus (Fig. 1); and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which is the virus responsible for COVID-19], bocavirus, and avian influenza virus (H5N1 and H7N9). + ward ' s science Content • Clinical disease • Traditional diagnostic methods • Molecular methods Fig. 1: Electron microscopic image of SARS coronavirus. The arrow indicates the presence of the "corona" or crown formed by a single surface protein. (Credit: James B. Mahony) Key Concepts • The detection of respiratory viruses involves methodologies that identify the presence of viruses that cause respiratory ailments. • Viral respiratory tract infections can be caused by numerous types of viruses, including influenza viruses, parainfluenza viruses, coronaviruses, and adenoviruses. • Traditional diagnostic methods include virus isolation in cell culture, direct fluorescent antibody (DFA) staining, shell vial culture, and rapid enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs). • Molecular methods include nucleic acid amplification tests (NAATs) and multiplex polymerase chain reaction (M-PCR) techniques.

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