The prevalence of human parainfluenza virus 1 on indoor office fomites

Stephanie A. Boone, Charles P. Gerba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to evaluate the potential role of fomites in human parainfluenza virus 1 (HPIV1) transmission by assessing the occurrence of HPIV1 on surfaces in an adult setting (office). In 2004, a total of 328 fomites from 12 different office buildings in five different cities were evaluated for HPIV1 viral RNA. HPIV1 was isolated using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and detected on 37% of all office fomites. HPIV1 RNA was frequently isolated on desk tops (47%), and infrequently isolated on light switches (19%). Data revealed a statistically significant difference between the percentage of HPIV1 positive fomites in office cubicles and conference rooms (Chi-square P < 0.011, Fisher's Exact P = 0.054). A statistically significantdifference was also found among positive fomites in different buildings (Chi-square P < 0.011). HPIV1 was consistently isolated on various indoor fomites in the 12 office buildings assessed during 2004, a low HPIV incident year.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41-46
Number of pages6
JournalFood and Environmental Virology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2010


  • Fomites
  • Offices
  • Parainfluenza 1 virus
  • RT-PCR
  • Respiratory virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Food Science
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Virology


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