Adenoviruses are a group of medium sized virus those are non enveloped, double stranded DNA viruses. They infect human, animals and birds, showing strict host specificity.

In humans, adenoviruses cause infections of the respiratory tract and eyes, and less often of the intestine and urinary tract.

Over 50 serotypes of adenoviruses has been isolated from human sources. Most of the recent serotypes are isolated from AIDS patients. Adenovirus infection is common worldwide mostly in children. Most of the infection of adenoviruses are asymptomatic. The virus may persists in host for many months.


Adenovirus are 70-75 nm in size. They have a characteristic morphology. The capsid is composed of 252 capsomers arranged as an icosahedron. Thus, the virion has the appearance of a space vehicle.


Adenoviruses are relatively stable, remaining viable for about a week at 37 C. they are readily inactivated at 50 C. they resist ether and bile salts.


Adenoviruses cause infections of the respiratory tract, eye, bladder and intestine. More than one type of virus may produce the same clinically syndrome and one type of virus may cause clinically different diseases. 

Laboratory DiagnosisDiagnosis can be established by isolation of the virus from the throat, eye, urine or feces. The materials are inoculated in tissue cultures. Preliminary identification is possible by nothing the cytopathic effects and by complement fixation tests with adenovirus antiserum. By hemagglutination with rat and monkey erythrocytes, the isolate can be classified into subgroups. Typing is done by neutralization tests.

Gaurav Singh

Editor in Chief Medical Microbiology & RDT Labs - RDT Labs Magazine | BSc Medical Microbiology | MSc Microbiology

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