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Rotavirus genotypes in children in the Basque Country (North of Spain): rapid and intense emergence of the G12[P8] genotype

  • G. CILLA (a1), M. MONTES (a1), M. GOMARIZ (a1), M. ALKORTA (a2), A. ITURZAETA (a2), E. G. PEREZ-YARZA (a3) (a4) and E. PEREZ-TRALLERO (a1) (a4)...

Between July 2009 and June 2011, rotavirus was detected in 507 of 4597 episodes of acute gastroenteritis in children aged <3 years in Gipuzkoa (Basque Country, Spain), of which the G-type was determined in 458 (90·3%). During the annual seasonal epidemic of 2010–2011, the unusual G-type 12 was predominant, causing 65% (145/223) of cases of rotavirus gastroenteritis. All the G12 strains were clustered in lineage III and were preferentially associated with P-type 8. This epidemic was characterized by broad geographical distribution (rural and urban) and, over 7 months, affected both infants and children, the most frequently affected being children between 4 and 24 months. Of children with rotavirus G12, 16% required hospital admission, the admission rate in children aged <2 years being 20·7 cases/10 000 children. The sudden emergence and predominance of G12 rotaviruses documented in this winter outbreak suggest that they may soon become a major human rotavirus genotype.

Corresponding author
*Author for correspondence: Dr G. Cilla, Servicio de Microbiología, Hospital Universitario Donostia, Paseo Dr. Beguiristain s/n, 20014 San Sebastián, Spain. (Email:
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Epidemiology & Infection
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