Towards measles elimination in Italy: Virological surveillance and genotypes trend (2013-2015)

F. Magurano, M. Baggieri, A. Filia, M. Del Manso, T. Lazzarotto, A. Amendola, P. D'Agaro, M. Chironna, F. Ansaldi, S. Iannazzo, P. Bucci, A. Marchi, L. Nicoletti, Measles Surveillance Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In accordance with the goal of the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe, the Italian National Measles and Rubella Elimination Plan aimed to interrupt indigenous measles transmission in Italy by the end of 2015. However, from 2013 to 2015, Italy experienced high measles burden with 4902 measles cases (49.3% laboratory-confirmed) reported to the enhanced measles surveillance system (cumulative incidence in the triennium reference period: 2.4/100,000 population). The measles elimination goal was not reached. Laboratory surveillance of measles circulating genotypes is performed by the Measles and Rubella National Reference Laboratory (NRL) at the Italian National Institute of Health (Istituto Superiore di Sanita - ISS), in Rome. Samples received from 1 January 2013-31 December 2015 were analysed. Those positive for measles genome by molecular tests were sequenced and phylogenetically analysed. Phylogenetic analysis performed by NRL identified that genotypes D4 and D8 were endemic and co-circulated in 2011-2013: study results show that genotype D4 disappeared during 2013. Sporadic cases were associated to genotype B3 during 2011-2013, which became endemic in Italy during 2014 and co-circulated with D8 until 2015. Sporadic cases were found belonging to genotypes D9 and H1 all over the period in exam. Similar trend has been observed in European WHO Region.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-29
Number of pages6
JournalVirus Research
Publication statusPublished - May 15 2017


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Female
  • Genotype
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Italy/epidemiology
  • Male
  • Measles/epidemiology/prevention & control/virology
  • Measles virus/classification/genetics/isolation & purification
  • Middle Aged
  • Molecular Epidemiology
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Viral/genetics
  • Sentinel Surveillance
  • Young Adult
  • Elimination
  • Genotyping
  • Measles
  • Measles outbreak
  • Phylogenetic analysis
  • Rubella


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