J Pediatr Infect Dis 2024; 19(01): 023-027
DOI: 10.1055/s-0043-1776043
Original Article

Epidemiological and Genetic Characteristics of Mycoplasma pneumoniae Pneumonia after the Outbreak of COVID-19

Lin Li
1   Department of Clinical Laboratory, National Clinical Research Center for Child Health, The Children's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, People's Republic of China
Bing-han Wang
2   School of Public Health, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, People's Republic of China
Wei Li
1   Department of Clinical Laboratory, National Clinical Research Center for Child Health, The Children's Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, People's Republic of China
› Author Affiliations


ObjectiveMycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia (MPP) accounts for a major part of community-acquired pneumonia in children, and we performed this study to investigate the epidemiological and genetic characteristics of MPP after the outbreak of COVID-19.

Methods A total of 15,538 throat swab samples were collected from inpatients with respiratory tract infections from January 2021 to December 2021. All specimens were detected by real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The P1 gene of Mycoplasma pneumoniae (MP) in positive samples was amplified and sequenced.

Results From January 2021 to December 2021, a total of 15,538 children with acute respiratory tract infection were tested by real-time RT-PCR in our study, including 9,056 boys and 6,482 girls. Overall, 469 (3.0%, 469/15,538) tested positive for MP, with 266 (2.9%, 266/9,056) males and 203 (3.1%, 203/6,482) females (p = 0.48). The positive rates of MP infection in < 1 year old, 1 to 3 years old, 3 to 5 years old, 5 to 7 years old, and >7 years old groups were 1.31% (85/6,474), 1.87% (64/3,423), 3.65% (95/2,601), 8.02% (127/1,583), and 6.72% (98/1,458), respectively. The homology analysis of the P1 gene of 24 MP positive samples showed that the nucleotide sequence consistency was up to 91.2 to 99.3%.

Conclusion After the outbreak of COVID-19, positive detection rate was the highest from 5 to 7 years old among children with MPP, and the genotype of MP in Hangzhou, China area was focused on P1 subtype, type I.

Authors' Contribution

W.L. conceived the idea and supervised this work. L.L. wrote the manuscript. L.L. and B.W. performed data processing and analysis. All authors reviewed and approved the manuscript.

Publication History

Received: 23 June 2023

Accepted: 13 September 2023

Article published online:
06 November 2023

© 2023. Thieme. All rights reserved.

Georg Thieme Verlag KG
Rüdigerstraße 14, 70469 Stuttgart, Germany

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