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Chiu YT, Tien N, Lin HC, Wei HM, Lai HC, Chen JA, Low YY, Lin HH, Hsu YL, Hwang KP. Detection of respiratory pathogens by application of multiplex PCR panel during early period of COVID-19 pandemic in a tertiary hospital in Central Taiwan. Journal of microbiology, immunology, and infection = Wei mian yu gan ran za zhi. 2022 Dec 1; 55(6 Pt 2):1144-1150.
BACKGROUND: Respiratory tract infections (RTIs) represent a major cause of clinical visits worldwide. Viral epidemiology of RTIs in adults has been less studied compared to children. FilmArray respiratory panel (FA-RP), a multiplex, real time polymerase chain reaction method can simultaneously detect the nucleic acids of multiple pathogens. The purpose of this study is to analyze the epidemiology and clinical presentations of an RTI cohort. METHODS: This retrospective cohort study was conducted at China Medical University Hospital (CMUH) and China Medical University Children's Hospital (CMUCH), from January 2020 to June 2020. The FA-RP results were collected and analyzed according to upper versus lower RTIs. RESULTS: Among 253 respiratory samples tested, 135 (53.4%) were from adults and 118 (46.6%) from children. A total positive rate of 33.9% (86/253) was found, with 21.48% (29/135) in adults and 48.31% (57/118) in children. Human rhinovirus/Enterovirus (HRV/EV) was detected in most of the age groups and was more common in URIs. HRV/EV was found as a frequent co-detection virus. Among children, HRV/EV was the most detected pathogen of URIs, while the most predominant pathogen in LRIs was Mycoplasma pneumoniae. CONCLUSIONS: FA-RP has the potential to improve the detection rate of respiratory pathogens. The positive rate of FA-RP was higher in children compared to adults, which likely corresponds to the higher incidence of viral RTIs in children. Different pathogens may lead to different types of respiratory infections.