The role of adenoviruses in the pertussis syndrome

Kenrad E. Nelson, Frances Gavitt, Murray D. Batt, Charles A. Kallick, K. T. Reddi, Stuart Levin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


To define the role of adenoviruses in the pertussis syndrome, a study was done of a group of 134 children with clinical pertussis and a healthy control population of similar age, race, sex, and socioeconomic status. Adenovirus infections occurred in 30 (22.4%) of 134 patients with the pertussis syndrome and 5 (4.9%) of 101 control subjects (p<0.001). B. pertussis was recovered from 46 (34.3%) patients, and from 18 (39.1%) of these patients adenoviruses were also isolated. Although adenovirus infections also occurred in patients with the pertussis syndrome with negative cultures for B. pertussis, the rate, 12 of 88 patients (13.6%), was significantly lower (p<0.001). The clinical course was similar irrespective of the results of bacterial or viral cultures. These data substantiate the frequent association of adenoviruses with the pertussis syndrome. It would appear that adenoviruses do not usually have an independent role in the pathogenesis of the pertussis syndrome since we found them so commonly to be one agent in a mixed infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-341
Number of pages7
JournalThe Journal of pediatrics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1975
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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