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Recent Advances in Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment of Human Respiratory Syncytial Virus

DOI: 10.1155/2013/595768

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Abstract:

Human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common cause of respiratory infection in infants and the elderly, leading to significant morbidity and mortality. The interdisciplinary fields, especially biotechnology and nanotechnology, have facilitated the development of modern detection systems for RSV. Many anti-RSV compounds like fusion inhibitors and RNAi molecules have been successful in laboratory and clinical trials. But, currently, there are no effective drugs for RSV infection even after decades of research. Effective diagnosis can result in effective treatment, but the progress in both of these facets must be concurrent. The development in prevention and treatment measures for RSV is at appreciable pace, but the implementation into clinical practice still seems a challenge. This review attempts to present the promising diverse research approaches and advancements in the area of diagnosis, prevention, and treatment that contribute to RSV management. 1. Introduction Worldwide, there are reportedly about 12 million severe and 3 million very severe cases of lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI) in children [1]. Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a common contributor of respiratory infections causing bronchiolitis, pneumonia, and chronic obstructive pulmonary infections in people of all ages but affects mainly children and elderly along with other viral infections leading to high mortality and morbidity [2–4]. A recent global survey suggests that RSV is not prevalent throughout the year in the tropical regions of the globe, but the incidence peaks in winter with a wide ranging persistence depending on the geographical topology [5]. RSV has been reported to be a prevalent lower respiratory tract pathogen distributed worldwide including countries from both, the developed and developing world. The major countries with RSV seasonal outbreaks include USA, Canada, Cambodia, Mexico, Uruguay, Brazil, Peru, France, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Latvia, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Australia, New Zealand, China, Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Taiwan, Vietnam, Myanmar, Thailand, Madagascar, Kenya, Zambia, Nigeria, and Columbia. The data about human RSV described in literature over the years seem to have been unchanged significantly, indicating the severity of RSV and the urgent concern to address this issue. An estimate of more than 2.4 billion US dollars per year is the economic cost of viral lower respiratory tract infection in children [6]. RSV is a Paramyxovirus belonging to the

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