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Adenovirus, a family of viruses that can cause various diseases

Adenovirus, a family of viruses that can cause various diseases
Adenovirus, a family of viruses that can cause various diseases Adenovirus is a family of viruses that can trigger various kinds of diseases in humans, ranging from the common cold to gastrointestinal infections.

There are 88 types of adenovirus known to infect humans.

According to the 2019 annual report in the journal Scientific Reports, the types of adenoviruses are grouped into seven different species, namely species A to G.

Getting to know Adenovirus

Reporting from Live Science, in addition to infecting humans, adenoviruses also infect various vertebrate animals, including mammals, birds, reptiles, and even fish.

In humans, adenovirus infection most often causes mild respiratory symptoms.

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However, according to the CDC, sometimes the virus can cause severe illness in people who have compromised immune systems, respiratory illnesses, or heart disease.

That said, scientists have used modified adenoviruses to make vaccines, such as the COVID-19 vaccine.

This modified virus can no longer infect human cells, but acts as a “vehicle” for vaccines to enter the body.

Symptoms of adenovirus infection

Reporting from Healthline, adenovirus infection often causes symptoms of the common cold or flu, fever, and sore throat.

Adenoviruses can also cause pink eye or conjunctivitis, inflammation of the airways of the lungs or acute bronchitis, pneumonia, lung infections, and inflammation of the stomach or intestines, known as acute gastroenteritis.

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In the gastrointestinal tract, adenovirus can cause diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and abdominal pain.

Less commonly, adenoviruses can infect the urinary tract causing inflammation or infection of the bladder and even neurological diseases that affect the spinal cord and brain.

How do adenoviruses spread?

Symptoms of adenovirus infection usually appear between 2 and 14 days after initial exposure.

In people with healthy immune systems, the symptoms of an adenovirus infection are usually mild and pass quickly.

“Adenoviruses are usually associated with respiratory infections, as well as gastrointestinal infections,” says Dr. Helena Gutierrez, medical director at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, told Medline Plus.

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Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, says that adenoviruses are fairly common and most responsible for pink eye outbreaks.

“However, there are also a number of papers showing adenovirus, once it enters units that treat immunocompromised patients, can cause more serious outbreaks,” Schaffner said.

“Adenovirus often causes pneumonia, and in this case, a number of deaths.”

The final word

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