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Original article

A comprehensive surveillance of adamantane resistance among human influenza A virus isolated from mainland China between 1956 and 2009

Yu Lan, Ye Zhang, Libo Dong, Dayan Wang, Weijuan Huang, Li Xin, Limei Yang, Xiang Zhao, Zi Li, Wei Wang, Xiyan Li, Cuilin Xu, Lei Yang, Junfeng Guo, Min Wang, Yousong Peng, Yan Gao, Yuanji Guo, Leying Wen, Taijiao Jiang, Yuelong Shu

Corresponding author name: Yuelong Shu
Corresponding author e-mail: yshu@cnic.org.cn

Citation: Antiviral Therapy 2010; 15:853-859
doi: 10.3851/IMP1656

Date accepted: 14 March 2010
Date published online: 10 September 2010


Background: Adamantane-derived drugs have been used for treatment and prophylaxis of influenza A virus infection for many years worldwide. Rapid surveillance of antiviral drug resistance is important for appropriate clinical guideline development. Here, we retrospectively assessed adamantane resistance among different influenza A subtypes (H1N1, H3N2 and H5N1) over 53 years (1956–2009) in mainland China.

Methods: A total of 1,451 viruses, including 773 H3N2 viruses, 647 H1N1 viruses and 31 human H5N1 viruses, were analysed by matrix gene sequencing and assayed for drug resistance.

Results: Our results show that the prevalence of adamantane-resistant H3N2 viruses was low between 1956 and 2002, but substantially increased in 2003 to the extent that since 2006 all H3N2 viruses have been drug resistant. The percentage of adamantane-resistant H1N1 viruses also increased from 50.0% in 2004 to 98.7% in 2007; however, this decreased to 46.7% in 2009. Only three adamantane-resistant H5N1 viruses have been detected since 2003, when the first case of human H5N1 virus infection was detected in mainland China. Phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that the increase of adamantane-resistant isolates was caused by point mutations or intrasubtype reassortment instead of intersubtype reassortment.

Conclusions: Because of the high percentage of adamantane-resistant H3N2 and H1N1 viruses in mainland China, the use of amantadine and rimantadine drugs for prophylaxis and treatment of current seasonal influenza A infection is not recommended.


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