Epidemiological, molecular, and clinical features of rotavirus infections among pediatrics in Qatar.
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Acute gastroenteritis (AGE) remains a major cause of diarrhea in developing and developed countries. Rotavirus (RV) is a leading cause of severe pediatric diarrhea worldwide. Here we report on the prevalence of circulating genotypes in association with demographics and clinical manifestations outcomes in Qatar. A total of 231 RV-positive fecal samples were collected from children suffering from AGE during 3 years study period between June 2016 and June 2019. The age of the subjects ranged between 2 months and 14 years (median of 16 months). The VP4 and VP7 were amplified and sequenced. Phylogenetic analyses were performed using MEGA7.0. Pearson's chi-squared test was used to determine significant differences for comparisons of general categorical variables. RV infections were most common in children between 1 and 3 years of age (49%), followed by those < 1 year and > 3 years of age (33% and 28%, respectively). RV infections were more frequent in males than females, with a ratio of 1.4:1. RV infections occurred throughout the year, with a noticeable increase in summer (42.8%) and a drop in winter (20.1%). RV genotypes G3P (30.8%), G2P (12.3%), G4P (11.7%), and G1P (10.4%) were the common genotypes during the study period. The G3P strain detected in our study revealed similarities to the equine-like G3P (10.3%; 24/231) (KT988229.1), Wa-like genomic constellation (9%; 21/231) (MF563894.1), and DS-1-like strains (6.4%; 15/231) (LC386081.1). Based on the Vesikari score system, severe clinical illness including diarrhea and vomiting (average frequency: 4 to 5 times/day) was recorded for G3P group, followed by G9P, G4P, and G1P. Higher incidence for G3P, G2P, G4P, and G1P were reported in Qatari subjects compared to other nationalities. The multinational status of a small country explains the wide diversity of circulating RV genotypes in Qatar. The highest prevalence and severe illnesses were recorded to G3P, which is different from other surrounding countries/global levels.
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