Circulation and characterization of seasonal influenza viruses in Cambodia, 2012-2015

Paul F. Horwood*, Erik A. Karlsson, Srey Viseth Horm, Sovann Ly, Seng Heng, Savuth Chin, Chau Darapheak, David Saunders, Lon Chanthap, Sareth Rith, Y. Phalla, Kim Lay Chea, Borann Sar, Amy Parry, Vanra Ieng, Reiko Tsuyouka, Yi Mo Deng, Aeron C. Hurt, Ian G. Barr, Naomi KomadinaPhilippe Buchy, Philippe Dussart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Background: Influenza virus circulation is monitored through the Cambodian influenza-like illness (ILI) sentinel surveillance system and isolates are characterized by the National Influenza Centre (NIC). Seasonal influenza circulation has previously been characterized by year-round activity and a peak during the rainy season (June-November). Objectives: We documented the circulation of seasonal influenza in Cambodia for 2012-2015 and investigated genetic, antigenic, and antiviral resistance characteristics of influenza isolates. Patients/Methods: Respiratory samples were collected from patients presenting with influenza-like illness (ILI) at 11 hospitals throughout Cambodia. First-line screening was conducted by the National Institute of Public Health and the Armed Forces Research Institute of Medical Sciences. Confirmation of testing and genetic, antigenic and antiviral resistance characterization was conducted by Institute Pasteur in Cambodia, the NIC. Additional virus characterization was conducted by the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza (Melbourne, Australia). Results: Between 2012 and 2015, 1,238 influenza-positive samples were submitted to the NIC. Influenza A(H3N2) (55.3%) was the dominant subtype, followed by influenza B (30.9%; predominantly B/Yamagata-lineage) and A(H1N1)pdm09 (13.9%). Circulation of influenza viruses began earlier in 2014 and 2015 than previously described, coincident with the emergence of A(H3N2) clades 3C.2a and 3C.3a, respectively. There was high diversity in the antigenicity of A(H3N2) viruses, and to a smaller extent influenza B viruses, during this period, with some mismatches with the northern and southern hemisphere vaccine formulations. All isolates tested were susceptible to the influenza antiviral drugs oseltamivir and zanamivir. Conclusions: Seasonal and year-round co-circulation of multiple influenza types/subtypes were detected in Cambodia during 2012-2015.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)465-476
Number of pages12
JournalInfluenza and other Respiratory Viruses
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • A(H1N1)pdm09
  • A(H3N2)
  • Cambodia
  • influenza A virus
  • influenza B virus
  • surveillance


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