Age-specific epidemic waves of influenza and respiratory syncytial virus in a subtropical city

Lin Yang, Kwok Hung Chan, Kwai Ping Lorna Suen, King Pan Chan, Xiling Wang, Peihua Cao, Daihai He, J. S.Malik Peiris, Chit Ming Wong

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Both influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are active throughout the year in subtropical or tropical regions, but few studies have reported on age-specific seasonal patterns of these viruses. We examined the age-specific epidemic curves of laboratory-confirmed cases of influenza A (subtyped into seasonal A(H1N1), A(H3N2), and pandemic virus A(H1N1)pdm09), influenza B and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), in subtropical city Hong Kong from 2004 to 2013. We found that different types and subtypes of influenza showed similar two-peak patterns across age groups, with one peak in winter and another in spring/summer. Age differences were found in epidemic onset time and duration, but none could reach statistical significance (p > 0.05). Age synchrony was found in epidemic peak time for both cool and warm seasons. RSV showed less clear seasonal patterns and non-synchronized epidemic curves across age. In conclusion, age synchrony was found in influenza seasonal epidemics and the 2009 pandemic, but not in RSV. None of the age groups consistently appear as the driving force for seasonal epidemics of influenza and RSV in Hong Kong.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10390
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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