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Enterovirus Surveillance -- United States, 1990

Since 1985, nonpolio enterovirus (NPEV) surveillance data on isolates reported from March through May in the United States have been used to predict the serotypes likely to be isolated during July through December, which encompasses the period of the peak enterovirus activity. From March through May 1990, state virology laboratories reported to CDC 77 NPEV isolates. Echovirus 30 was isolated most frequently (19 isolates (25%)), followed by coxsackievirus A9 (eight isolates (10%)), coxsackie virus B2 (eight isolates (10%)),echovirus 5 (five isolates (6%)), echovirus 6 (five isolates (6%)), and coxsackievirus B5, echovirus 7, echovirus 9, andechovirus 11 (four isolates each (5%)).

During March through May 1989, coxsackievirus B5 was the most commonly reported NPEV (16 (52%) of 31 isolates). Of all 1260 NPEV isolates reported for 1989, the six most common were coxsackievirus B5 (21%), echovirus 9 (20%), echovirus 11 (10%), coxsackievirus B2 (6%), echovirus 6 (5%), and coxsackievirus A16 (5%). Reported by: State virology laboratory directors. Respiratory and Enterovirus Br, Div of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, Center for Infectious Diseases, CDC.

Editorial Note

Editorial Note: Enteroviruses are a group of 65 different, common agents causing illnesses that range from mild, nonspecific manifestations to syndromes as severe as aseptic meningitis. Reporting of the most prevalent enterovirus serotypes may assist diagnostic laboratories in the rapid identification of enterovirus isolates and public health officials in recognizing and controlling outbreaks of enteroviral disease. Among the commonly reported isolates for 1989, coxsackievirus A16 was the agent most probably responsible for large regional outbreaks of hand, foot,and mouth disease.

Since 1970, state health department laboratories have reported enterovirus serotypes to CDC on a monthly basis approximately 6-8 weeks after specimens are submitted for identification; the delay in reporting is due to the time necessary to isolate and identify the viruses. Previous reviews of enterovirus surveillance data have demonstrated that isolates from March through May predict the serotypes likely to be isolated in July through December(1,2). From 1970 through 1983, the six most common isolates in March through May accounted for an average of 59% of the isolates in July through December (range: 51%-74%), and for this period in 1984-1988, for 50%-58% of the isolates. In 1989, they accounted for 66% of isolates in July through December.

Serotypes isolated in early 1990 suggested that echovirus 30,coxsackieviruses A9 and B2, and echoviruses 5 and 6 are likely to be prevalent this year. Preliminary data from June and July 1990 indicate that these serotypes accounted for 75% of the enteroviruses reported. These five serotypes and five of the six most frequently reported isolates in 1989 are among the 15 most frequently reported isolates during 1970-1983(1).

Virology laboratories are encouraged to report identified enteroviruses through state virology laboratories to CDC.


  1. Strikas RA, Anderson LJ, Parker RA. Temporal and geographicpatterns of isolates of nonpolio enterovirus in the United States,1970-1983. J Infect Dis 1986;153:346-51.

  2. CDC. Enterovirus surveillance--United States, 1989.MMWR 1989;38:563.

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