Intrauterine Parvovirus B19 infections may cause fetal anemia, non-immune hydrops fetalis or abortion. This study focuses on the pathogenic role of Parvovirus B19 in non-immune hydrops fetalis at Hacettepe University, a major reference hospital in Turkey. Twenty-two cases of non-immune hydrops fetalis were retrospectively selected out of a total of 431 hydrops fetalis specimens from the Department of Pathology archieves. Paraffine embedded tissue sections from placental and liver tissues from each case were evaluated by histopatholocry, immunohistochemistry nested PCR and commercial quantitative Real-time PCR. Viral DNA was detected in placental tissues by Real-time PCR in 2 cases (2/22, 9.1%) where histopathology also revealed changes suggestive of Parvovirus B19 infection. No significant histopathologic changes were observed for the remaining sections. Nested PCR that targets the VP1 re-ion of the viral genome and immunohistochemistry for viral capsid antigens were negative for all cases. As a result, Parvovirus B19 is identified as the etiologic agent for the development of non-immune hydrops fetalis for 9.1% of the cases in Hacettepe University, Turkey. Real-time PCR is observed to be an effective dia-nostic tool for nucleic acid detection from paraffine embedded tissues. Part of this study was presented as a poster at XIIIth International Congress of Virology, San Francisco, USA (Abstract V-572). (C) VersitaWarsaw and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. All rights reserved.