Melnick, Joseph L. Department of Virology and Epidemiology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas.
Reichmann, M. E. Department of Microbiology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois.
Last reviewed:April 2020
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One of the virus types belonging to the genus Enterovirus in the family Picornaviridae. Rhinoviruses were initially thought to constitute their own genus (Rhinovirus). However, modern-day investigations have determined that rhinoviruses are members of the genus Enterovirus in the family Picornaviridae. The human rhinovirus group includes at least 160 antigenically distinct types. Like other enteroviruses, the rhinoviruses are small (17–30 nanometers), contain ribonucleic acid (RNA), and are not inactivated by ether. Unlike most other enteroviruses, though, they are isolated from the nose and throat rather than from the enteric tract, and are unstable if kept under acid conditions (pH 3–5) for 1–3 h. Most strains can be recovered by culture only in cells of human origin; they grow better when cultures are rolled (rather than held stationary) and are kept at a temperature of 33°C (91.4°F). See also: Antigen; Enterovirus; Picornaviridae; Tissue culture; Virus; Virus classification
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