Human Metapneumovirus

Human metapneumovirus (hMPV) is a recently identified member of a family of viruses. It was identified in 2001 in the Netherlands, but it most likely has been causing respiratory illnesses for at least 50 years worldwide. Human metapneumovirus can cause upper and lower respiratory tract infections in people of all ages. Upper respiratory tract infections include colds, while lower respiratory tract infections include pneumonia or bronchitis.

Most people with hMPV infection have mild symptoms. But some people have more severe illness, with wheezing, difficulty breathing, hoarseness, cough, pneumonia, and a flare-up of asthma. HMPV can cause more serious illness in children younger than 1 year of age, the elderly and people who have weak immune systems.