Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division

Detecting human bocavirus in new places

Bocavirus was discovered in 2005 and has been linked to respiratory and gastrointestinal infections, although whether it actually causes these diseases remains unclear. VIDI scientists, led by affiliate investigator Dr. Janet Englund, looked for bocavirus in children aged 2-11, using sensitive PCR on nasal swabs and saliva. While the virus had previously been detected in nasal swabs, stool, and blood samples, this was the first study to detect evidence of the virus in saliva. The group found viral DNA in both healthy children and children with cold-like symptoms.  While this study was small, these techniques may be used in the future to address questions about bocavirus’ association with disease.

DETECTION OF BOCAVIRUS IN SALIVA OF CHILDREN WITH AND WITHOUT RESPIRATORY ILLNESS.  Martin ET, Taylor J, Kuypers J, Magaret A, Wald A, Zerr D, Englund JA.  J Clin Microbiol. 2009 Sep 30.