Molecular epidemiology of Anellovirus infection in children's urine: A cross-sectional study

Document Type : Original Article


1 Department of Virology, Faculty of Medicine, International Campus (IUMS-IC), Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Virology, Faculty of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran; Infectious Disease Research Center, Birjand University of Medical Science, Birjand, Iran

4 Department of Virology, Faculty of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

5 Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran; Department of Virology, Faculty of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Background: Anelloviridae is a viral family which is considered as a constant component of human virome. Given the ubiquitous nature of the virus infection and the long-standing relationship between the virus and the host, in the present study, we aimed at investigating the presence of Anelloviruses in the urine samples of children in a cross-sectional study. Materials and Methods: The urine samples of 50 children who were referred to Hazrat Ali Asghar Children's Hospital, affiliated to Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran, were obtained. Three TaqMan real-time polymerase chain reactions (PCRs) were carried out for Anellovirus detection. A phylogenetic tree was drawn for positive products after PCR amplification, purification, and nucleotide sequencing. SPSS, version 20, was used for statistical analyses. Results: Children's mean age ± standard deviation was 4.30 ± 1.47 years and 56% (28/50) were female. Real-time PCR revealed that Anellovirus was positive in 12% (6/50). Furthermore, PCR-sequencing results showed that torque teno virus was detected in 83.3% (5/6) and SEN virus in 16.6% (1/6) of the Anellovirus positive samples. In addition, 86% (5/6) of the children with positive samples were female. No significant difference was detected between any of the demographic characteristics and Anellovirus positivity (P > 0.05). Conclusion: According to our preliminary study, the presence of Anelloviruses in the urine samples of asymptomatic children in Iran is striking, although limited sample size and age range limitations might have affected the comprehensive results of our study.


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