Adenovirus outbreak at U.Md.

Officials at the University of Maryland said they would take special precautions to clean surfaces over the winter break following an outbreak of adenovirus in at least 30 students and the death of one 18-year-old freshman, news sources are reporting.

Structure of adenovirus

Olivia Paregol, 18, died November 18, after suffering respiratory symptoms typical of the virus, her father, Ian Paregol, told local television stations as well as the Baltimore Sun, according to an NBC News report.

The report also said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were assisting with the investigation of the outbreak on the College Park campus.

Adenoviruses are very common, according to the CDC, and can cause symptoms ranging from a cold to eye infections and sometimes stomach upset. Only a few of the 50 or so known strains cause serious disease but they include the adenovirus 7 strain.

Officials in Maryland have not said whether Ms Paregol was infected with that strain, but new military recruits are routinely vaccinated against it, because it has caused such a nuisance. The vaccine, however, is not available to the general public.

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Paul Katula
Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

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