Properties of Parvoviridae 285

Parvovirus B19 288

Enteric Parvoviruses 292

Dependoviruses 292

Further Reading 293

The smallest of all human viruses, the Parvoviridae contain so little genetic information in their unique single-stranded DNA molecule that they are able to replicate only in dividing cells (or, m the case of members of the Depen-dovirus genus, in the presence of a helper virus). This requirement for dividing cells accounts for their predilection for bone marrow, gut, and the developing fetus. Parvoviruses of cats, dogs, and mink cause panleukopenia and enteritis, while a rat parvovirus causes congenital malformation of the fetus. The human parvovirus B19, originally discovered fortuitously in the serum of asymptomatic blood donors, has subsequently turned out to be associated not only with a very common exanthematous disease of children, but also with aplastic crises in patients with chronic hemolytic anemia, as well as with hydrops fetalis. Another human parvovirus has been reported to cause gastroenteritis.

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