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- Negative sense, single strand, enveloped RNA paramyxovirus.
- Member of Paramyxoviridae, along with human metapneumovirus (hMPV), measles and mumps.
- RSV is part of subfamily Pneumovirinae.
- RSV fusion protein facilitates fusion of the viral envelope with the host cell membrane. This protein is a potential target for vaccines and anti-viral agents.
- The virus that infects people is human RSV. There are no animal reservoirs for this virus.
- Transmission is via nasal or oral secretions, either directly via large droplets (and probably aerosolized particles) or indirectly through contact with contaminated hands and environmental surfaces (e.g. cribs, toys, doorknobs, tabletops).