ResearchPad - Infectious Diseases https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[A biological control model to manage the vector and the infection of <i>Xylella fastidiosa</i> on olive trees]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_11237 Xylella fastidiosa pauca ST53 is the bacterium responsible for the Olive Quick Decline Syndrome that has killed millions of olive trees in Southern Italy. A recent work demonstrates that a rational integration of vector and transmission control measures, into a strategy based on chemical and physical control means, can manage Xylella fastidiosa invasion and impact below an acceptable economic threshold. In the present study, we propose a biological alternative to the chemical control action, which involves the predetermined use of an available natural enemy of Philaenus spumarius, i.e., Zelus renardii, for adult vector population and infection biocontrol. The paper combines two different approaches: a laboratory experiment to test the predation dynamics of Zelus renardii on Philaenus spumarius and its attitude as candidate for an inundation strategy; a simulated experiment of inundation, to preliminary test the efficacy of such strategy, before eventually proceeding to an in-field experimentation. With this double-fold approach we show that an inundation strategy with Zelus renardii has the potential to furnish an efficient and “green” solution to Xylella fastidiosa invasion, with a reduction of the pathogen incidence below 10%. The biocontrol model presented here could be promising for containing the impact and spread of Xylella fastidiosa, after an in-field validation of the inundation technique. Saving the fruit orchard, the production and the industry in susceptible areas could thus become an attainable goal, within comfortable parameters for sustainability, environmental safety, and effective plant health protection in organic orchard management.

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<![CDATA[Placental transfer of Letermovir &amp; Maribavir in the <i>ex vivo</i> human cotyledon perfusion model. New perspectives for <i>in utero</i> treatment of congenital cytomegalovirus infection]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_11236 Congenital cytomegalovirus infection can lead to severe sequelae. When fetal infection is confirmed, we hypothesize that fetal treatment could improve the outcome. Maternal oral administration of an effective drug crossing the placenta could allow fetal treatment. Letermovir (LMV) and Maribavir (MBV) are new CMV antivirals, and potential candidates for fetal treatment.MethodsThe objective was to investigate the placental transfer of LMV and MBV in the ex vivo method of the human perfused cotyledon. Term placentas were perfused, in an open-circuit model, with LMV or MBV at concentrations in the range of clinical peak plasma concentrations. Concentrations were measured using ultraperformance liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. Mean fetal transfer rate (FTR) (fetal (FC) /maternal concentration), clearance index (CLI), accumulation index (AI) (retention of each drug in the cotyledon tissue) were measured. Mean FC were compared with half maximal effective concentrations of the drugs (EC50(LMV) and EC50(MBV)).ResultsFor LMV, the mean FC was (± standard deviation) 1.1 ± 0.2 mg/L, 1,000-fold above the EC50(LMV). Mean FTR, CLI and AI were 9 ± 1%, 35 ± 6% and 4 ± 2% respectively. For MBV, the mean FC was 1.4 ± 0.2 mg/L, 28-fold above the EC50(MBV). Mean FTR, CLI and AI were 10 ± 1%, 50 ± 7% and 2 ± 1% respectively.ConclusionsDrugs’ concentrations in the fetal side should be in the range for in utero treatment of fetuses infected with CMV as the mean FC was superior to the EC50 for both molecules. ]]> <![CDATA[Hospital preparedness for COVID-19 pandemic: experience from department of medicine at Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_10285 The 2019–2020 pandemic Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) has inundated hospital systems globally, as they prepare to accommodate surge of patients requiring advanced levels of care. Pandemic preparedness has not been this urgently and widely needed in the last several decades. According to epidemiologic predictions, the peak of this pandemic has still not been reached, and hospitals everywhere need to ensure readiness to care for more patients than they usually do, and safety for healthcare workers who strive to save lives. We share our hospital-wide rapid preparedness and response to COVID-19 to help provide information to other healthcare systems globally.

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<![CDATA[Linking administrative data sets of inpatient infectious diseases diagnoses in far North Queensland: a cohort profile]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_9097 To design a linked hospital database using administrative and clinical information to describe associations that predict infectious diseases outcomes, including long-term mortality.ParticipantsA retrospective cohort of Townsville Hospital inpatients discharged with an International Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems 10th Revision Australian Modification code for an infectious disease between 1 January 2006 and 31 December 2016 was assembled. This used linked anonymised data from: hospital administrative sources, diagnostic pathology, pharmacy dispensing, public health and the National Death Registry. A Created Study ID was used as the central identifier to provide associations between the cohort patients and the subsets of granular data which were processed into a relational database. A web-based interface was constructed to allow data extraction and evaluation to be performed using editable Structured Query Language.Findings to dateThe database has linked information on 41 367 patients with 378 487 admissions and 1 869 239 diagnostic/procedure codes. Scripts used to create the database contents generated over 24 000 000 database rows from the supplied data. Nearly 15% of the cohort was identified as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders. Invasive staphylococcal, pneumococcal and Group A streptococcal infections and influenza were common in this cohort. The most common comorbidities were smoking (43.95%), diabetes (24.73%), chronic renal disease (17.93%), cancer (16.45%) and chronic pulmonary disease (12.42%). Mortality over the 11-year period was 20%.Future plansThis complex relational database reutilising hospital information describes a cohort from a single tropical Australian hospital of inpatients with infectious diseases. In future analyses, we plan to explore analyses of risks, clinical outcomes, healthcare costs and antimicrobial side effects in site and organism specific infections. ]]> <![CDATA[Inferring the immune response from repertoire sequencing]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7765 High-throughput immune repertoire sequencing (RepSeq) experiments are becoming a common way to study the diversity, structure and composition of lymphocyte repertoires, promising to yield unique insight into individuals’ past infection history. However, the analysis of these sequences remains challenging, especially when comparing two different temporal or tissue samples. Here we develop a new theoretical approach and methodology to extract the characteristics of the lymphocyte repertoire response from different samples. The method is specifically tailored to RepSeq experiments and accounts for the multiple sources of noise present in these experiments. Its output provides expansion parameters, as well as a list of potentially responding clonotypes. We apply the method to describe the response to yellow fever vaccine obtained from samples taken at different time points. We also use our results to estimate the diversity and clone size statistics from data.

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<![CDATA[New estimates of the Zika virus epidemic attack rate in Northeastern Brazil from 2015 to 2016: A modelling analysis based on Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS) surveillance data]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7754 The mandatory reporting of the Zika virus (ZIKV) disease began region-wide in February 2016, and it is believed that ZIKV cases could have been highly under-reported before that. Given the Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is relatively well reported, the GBS surveillance data has the potential to act as a reasonably reliable proxy for inferring the true ZIKV epidemics. We developed a mathematical model incorporating weather effects to study the ZIKV-GBS epidemics and estimated the key epidemiological parameters. It was found that the attack rate of ZIKV was likely to be lower than 33% over the two epidemic waves. The risk rate from symptomatic ZIKV case to develop GBS was estimated to be approximately 0.0061%. The analysis suggests that it would be difficult for another ZIKV outbreak to appear in Northeastern Brazil in the near future.

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<![CDATA[Prevalence, Severity and Mortality associated with COPD and Smoking in patients with COVID-19: A Rapid Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7662 Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is an evolving infectious disease that dramatically spread all over the world in the early part of 2020. No studies have yet summarized the potential severity and mortality risks caused by COVID-19 in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and we update information in smokers.MethodsWe systematically searched electronic databases from inception to March 24, 2020. Data were extracted by two independent authors in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines. Study quality was assessed using a modified version of the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. We synthesized a narrative from eligible studies and conducted a meta-analysis using a random-effects model to calculate pooled prevalence rates and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI).ResultsIn total, 123 abstracts were screened and 61 full-text manuscripts were reviewed. A total of 15 studies met the inclusion criteria, which included a total of 2473 confirmed COVID-19 patients. All studies were included in the meta-analysis. The crude case fatality rate of COVID-19 was 7.4%. The pooled prevalence rates of COPD patients and smokers in COVID-19 cases were 2% (95% CI, 1%–3%) and 9% (95% CI, 4%–14%) respectively. COPD patients were at a higher risk of more severe disease (risk of severity = 63%, (22/35) compared to patients without COPD 33.4% (409/1224) [calculated RR, 1.88 (95% CI, 1.4–2.4)]. This was associated with higher mortality (60%). Our results showed that 22% (31/139) of current smokers and 46% (13/28) of ex-smokers had severe complications. The calculated RR showed that current smokers were 1.45 times more likely [95% CI: 1.03–2.04] to have severe complications compared to former and never smokers. Current smokers also had a higher mortality rate of 38.5%.ConclusionAlthough COPD prevalence in COVID-19 cases was low in current reports, COVID-19 infection was associated with substantial severity and mortality rates in COPD. Compared to former and never smokers, current smokers were at greater risk of severe complications and higher mortality rate. Effective preventive measures are required to reduce COVID-19 risk in COPD patients and current smokers. ]]> <![CDATA[Virulence factors and antibiograms of <i>Escherichia coli</i> isolated from diarrheic calves of Egyptian cattle and water buffaloes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_8462 Diarrhea caused by Escherichia coli in calves is an important problem in terms of survivability, productivity and treatment costs. In this study, 88 of 150 diarrheic animals tested positive for E. coli. Of these, 54 samples had mixed infection with other bacterial and/or parasitic agents. There are several diarrheagenic E. coli pathotypes including enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC), Shiga-toxin producing E. coli (STEC), enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC) and necrotoxigenic E. coli (NTEC). Molecular detection of virulence factors Stx2, Cdt3, Eae, CNF2, F5, Hly, Stx1, and ST revealed their presence at 39.7, 27.2, 19.3, 15.9, 13.6, 9.0, 3.4, and 3.4 percent, respectively. As many as 13.6% of the isolates lacked virulence genes and none of the isolate had LT or CNF1 toxin gene. The odds of isolating ETEC from male calves was 3.6 times (95% CI: 1.1, 12.4; P value = 0.042) that of female calves, whereas the odds of isolating NTEC from male calves was 72.9% lower (95% CI: 91.3% lower, 15.7% lower; P value = 0.024) than that in females. The odds of isolating STEC in winter was 3.3 times (95% CI: 1.1, 10.3; P value = 0.037) that of spring. Antibiograms showed 48 (54.5%) of the isolates to be multi-drug resistant. The percent resistance to tetracycline, streptomycin, ampicillin, and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole was 79.5, 67.0, 54.5, and 43.0, respectively. Ceftazidime (14.8%), amoxicillin-clavulanic acid (13.6%) and aztreonam (11.3%) showed the lowest resistance, and none of the isolates was resistant to imipenem. The results of this study can help improve our understanding of the epidemiological aspects of E. coli infection and to devise strategies for protection against it. The prevalence of E. coli pathotypes can help potential buyers of calves to avoid infected premises. The antibiograms in this study emphasizes the risks associated with the random use of antibiotics.

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<![CDATA[Adherence to antiretroviral therapy and associated factors among Human immunodeficiency virus positive patients accessing treatment at Nekemte referral hospital, west Ethiopia, 2019]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7637 Antiretroviral therapy has a remarkable clinical effect in reducing the progress of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. The clinical outcome of Anti-Retroviral therapy depends on strict adherence. Poor adherence reduces the effectiveness of antiretroviral therapy and increases viral replication. With changes in service delivery over time and differences in socio-demographic status from region to region, it is essential to measure adherence. Therefore, this study aimed to assess adherence to antiretroviral therapy and its associated factors among HIV/AIDS patients accessing treatment at Nekemte referral hospital, West Ethiopia.MethodsInstitutional based cross-sectional study was conducted on 311 HIV/AIDS patients from March 01 to March 30, 2019. The study participants were selected by a simple random sampling method and interviewed using structured questionnaires. Bivariable logistic regression was conducted to find an association between each independent variable and adherence to antiretroviral medication. Multivariable logistic regression was used to find the independent variables which best predict adherence. The statistical significance was measured using odds ratio at a 95% confidence interval with a p-value of less than 0.05.ResultsOut of a total of 311 patients sampled, 305 were participated in the study, making a response rate of 98.07%. From these 305 study participants,73.1% (95% CI = 68.2, 78.0) were adherent to their medication. Having knowledge about HIV and its treatment (AOR = 8.24, 95% CI: 3.10, 21.92), having strong family/social support (AOR = 6.21, 95% CI: 1.39, 27.62), absence of adverse drug reaction (AOR = 5.33, 95% CI: 1.95, 14.57), absence of comorbidity of other chronic diseases (AOR = 5.72, 95% CI: 1.91, 17.16) and disclosing HIV status to the family (AOR = 5.08, 95% CI: 2.09, 12.34) were significantly associated with an increased likelihood of adherence to antiretroviral medication.ConclusionThe level of adherence to antiretroviral therapy was found low compared to WHO recommendation. The clinician should emphasize reducing adverse drug reaction, detecting and treating co-morbidities early, improving knowledge through health education, and encouraging the patients to disclose their HIV status to their families. ]]> <![CDATA[Suggestions to Prepare for the Second Epidemic of COVID-19 in Korea]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_8428 <![CDATA[Prospective observational study on the pharmacokinetic properties of the Irrua ribavirin regimen used in routine clinical practice in patients with Lassa fever in Nigeria]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nb6aeae1d-7691-4367-9d6f-f4480c1fa542 Lassa fever (LF) is a severe and often fatal systemic disease in humans and affects a large number of countries in West Africa. Treatment options are limited to supportive care and the broad-spectrum antiviral agent ribavirin. However, evidence for ribavirin efficacy in patients with LF is poor and pharmacokinetic (PK) data are not available.Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital (ISTH) developed an intravenous ribavirin regimen different to the WHO recommendation. Apart from a lower total daily dose the drug is usually administered once per day which reduces the exposure of personnel to patients with LF. The aim of this study is to characterise the PK of the Irrua ribavirin regimen.Methods and analysisThis prospective, observational clinical study will assess PK properties of the Irrua ribavirin regimen on routinely ribavirin-treated patients with LF at ISTH, a referral hospital serving 19 local governmental areas in a LF endemic zone in Nigeria. Participants will be adults with PCR-confirmed LF. The primary objective is to describe classical PK parameters for ribavirin (maximum plasma drug concentration, time to maximum plasma drug concentration, area under the plasma drug concentration vs time curve, half-life time T1/2, volume of distribution). Blood samples will be collected at 0.5, 1, 3, 5, 8, 12 and 24 hours after doses on day 1, day 4 and day 10 of ribavirin treatment. Ribavirin plasma concentrations will be determined using liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry.Ethics and disseminationThe study will be conducted in compliance with the protocol, the Declaration of Helsinki, Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and the Nigerian National Code for Health Research Ethics. The protocol has received approval by the Health Research Ethics Committee of ISTH. Results will be made available to LF survivors, their caregivers, the funders, LF research society and other researchers.Registration detailsISRCTN11104750 ]]> <![CDATA[First Pediatric Case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 in Korea]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N2d71daac-6070-4654-b25c-782c75eb42ce

The large outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) that started in Wuhan, China has now spread to many countries worldwide. Current epidemiologic knowledge suggests that relatively few cases are seen among children, which limits opportunities to address pediatric specific issues on infection control and the children's contribution to viral spread in the community. Here, we report the first pediatric case of COVID-19 in Korea. The 10-year-old girl was a close contact of her uncle and her mother who were confirmed to have COVID-19. In this report, we present mild clinical course of her pneumonia that did not require antiviral treatment and serial viral test results from multiple specimens. Lastly, we raise concerns on the optimal strategy of self-quarantine and patient care in a negative isolation room for children.

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<![CDATA[Are We Ready for Coronavirus Disease 2019 Arriving at Schools?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N37ad11c7-fbe3-4414-a6e0-df69b05bc806 ]]> <![CDATA[Drive-Through Screening Center for COVID-19: a Safe and Efficient Screening System against Massive Community Outbreak]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/Nae1aad93-1250-4bf1-9782-17b1e3d5bcd5

As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak is ongoing, the number of individuals to be tested for COVID-19 is rapidly increasing. For safe and efficient screening for COVID-19, drive-through (DT) screening centers have been designed and implemented in Korea. Herein, we present the overall concept, advantages, and limitations of the COVID-19 DT screening centers. The steps of the DT centers include registration, examination, specimen collection, and instructions. The entire service takes about 10 minutes for one testee without leaving his or her cars. Increased testing capacity over 100 tests per day and prevention of cross-infection between testees in the waiting space are the major advantages, while protection of staff from the outdoor atmosphere is challenging. It could be implemented in other countries to cope with the global COVID-19 outbreak and transformed according to their own situations.

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<![CDATA[Clinical Score System to Differentiate Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Patients from Patients with Scrub Typhus or Hemorrhagic Fever with Renal Syndrome in Korea]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N37f1b837-2e40-4fdc-bb1b-5cbf97b889e8

Background

Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging infectious disease with high mortality in East Asia. This study aimed to develop, for primary care providers, a prediction score using initial symptoms and basic laboratory blood tests to differentiate between SFTS and other endemic zoonoses in Korea.

Methods

Patients aged ≥ 18 years diagnosed with endemic zoonoses during a 3-year period (between January 2015 and December 2017) were retrospectively enrolled from 4 tertiary university hospitals. A prediction score was built based on multivariate logistic regression analyses.

Results

Of 84 patients, 35 with SFTS and 49 with other endemic zoonoses were enrolled. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, independent predictors of SFTS included neurologic symptoms (odds ratio [OR], 12.915; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.173–76.747), diarrhea (OR, 10.306; 95% CI, 1.588–66.895), leukopenia (< 4,000/mm3) (OR, 19.400; 95% CI, 3.290–114.408), and normal C-reactive protein (< 0.5 mg/dL) (OR, 24.739; 95% CI, 1.812–337.742). We set up a prediction score by assigning one point to each of these four predictors. A score of ≥ 2 had 82.9% sensitivity (95% CI, 71.7%–87.5%) and 95.9% specificity (95% CI, 88.0%–99.2%). The area under the curve of the clinical prediction score was 0.950 (95% CI, 0.903–0.997).

Conclusion

This study finding suggests a simple and useful scoring system to predict SFTS in patients with endemic zoonoses. We expect this strategic approach to facilitate early differentiation of SFTS from other endemic zoonoses, especially by primary care providers, and to improve the clinical outcomes.

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<![CDATA[Prevalence and type distribution of human papillomavirus in a Chinese urban population between 2014 and 2018: a retrospective study]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N2050df28-8a93-48d9-8e56-2954fee25750

Background

Human papilloma virus (HPV) infection is one of the most common sexually transmitted infections among women worldwide. The current study’s main objective is to report the prevalence and distribution of HPV types in an urban population in Beijing, China.

Methods

All the eligible female participants aged ≥18 years were recruited from the Aerospace Center Hospital in Beijing, China between 2014 and 2018. A total of 21 HPV types were detected by the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) reverse dot blot method and fluorescence quantitative PCR method.

Results

In total, 12 high risk HPV types and nine low risk HPV types were detected. The HPV-positive rates were 8.85% in 2014, 7.16% in 2015, 7.60% in 2016, 8.31% in 2017, and 7.72% in 2018, respectively, in an urban population in Beijing, China. Overall, no significant differences in the HPV-positive rates were found over the five years. The peak prevalence of HPV infection in all types was observed in age group of 20–24 in all types. HPV52 was the dominant HPV type across the five years . Among all 21 HPV types, HPV66, HPV26, and HPV59 were ranked the top three in coinfection occurrence.

Conclusions

Our findings are very helpful for HPV screening and vaccination. The associations between gynaecological diseases and the HPV types with high prevalence, particularly HPV52, warrant further investigation.

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<![CDATA[Antibiotic prescribing in neonatal sepsis: an Australian nationwide survey]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/N482ba219-d9c1-4bd2-bd30-8c39fb32c15e

Objective

To evaluate quality and variation in antibiotic prescribing for neonatal sepsis.

Design

We analysed prescribing in hospitalised neonates using the National Antimicrobial Prescribing Survey in Australian neonates from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2018.

Setting

Data from antibiotic point prevalence surveys performed in hospitals, ranging from rural hospitals to tertiary paediatric and maternity hospitals within Australia.

Patients

Admitted neonates <28 days of age from participating hospitals.

Main outcome measures

Variation and appropriateness in prescribing for neonatal sepsis and variation in dosing for gentamicin and benzylpenicillin across hospitals.

Results

A total of 415 prescriptions among 214 neonates from 39 different hospitals were included. The majority of prescriptions (342, 82.4%) were for neonates <7 days of age. The most commonly prescribed antibiotics were gentamicin and benzylpenicillin, with 323 (77.8%) prescriptions. Dosing variability was substantial, with doses ranging from 2 to 8 mg/kg for gentamicin (median 5 mg/kg, IQR 4–5) and from 45 to 72 mg/kg for benzylpenicillin (median 60 mg/kg, IQR 50–60), although only 13 (3.2%) and 19 (4.6%) prescriptions were locally assessed as inappropriate or non-compliant with guidelines, respectively. At time of audit, 22% of antibiotics had been given for more than 48 hours and 9% more than 72 hours, although microbiologically confirmed infection was documented in only nine (4.2%) neonates.

Conclusions

Prescribing for neonatal sepsis was dominated by use of benzylpenicillin and gentamicin with substantial variation in dosing. A small minority had culture-confirmed infection. Efforts to standardise antibiotic dosing and duration for suspected neonatal sepsis are recommended.

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<![CDATA[A Novel HIV Vaccine Adjuvanted by IC31 Induces Robust and Persistent Humoral and Cellular Immunity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab9ab0ee8fa60badf30

The HIV vaccine strategy that, to date, generated immune protection consisted of a prime-boost regimen using a canarypox vector and an HIV envelope protein with alum, as shown in the RV144 trial. Since the efficacy was weak, and previous HIV vaccine trials designed to generate antibody responses failed, we hypothesized that generation of T cell responses would result in improved protection. Thus, we tested the immunogenicity of a similar envelope-based vaccine using a mouse model, with two modifications: a clade C CN54gp140 HIV envelope protein was adjuvanted by the TLR9 agonist IC31®, and the viral vector was the vaccinia strain NYVAC-CN54 expressing HIV envelope gp120. The use of IC31® facilitated immunoglobulin isotype switching, leading to the production of Env-specific IgG2a, as compared to protein with alum alone. Boosting with NYVAC-CN54 resulted in the generation of more robust Th1 T cell responses. Moreover, gp140 prime with IC31® and alum followed by NYVAC-CN54 boost resulted in the formation and persistence of central and effector memory populations in the spleen and an effector memory population in the gut. Our data suggest that this regimen is promising and could improve the protection rate by eliciting strong and long-lasting humoral and cellular immune responses.

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<![CDATA[Sanitation and Health]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db0cab0ee8fa60bca73f

As one article in a four-part PLoS Medicine series on water and sanitation, David Trouba and colleagues discuss the importance of improved sanitation to health and the role that the health sector can play in its advocacy.

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<![CDATA[Gene Conversion Transfers the GAF-A Domain of Phosphodiesterase TbrPDEB1 to One Allele of TbrPDEB2 of Trypanosoma brucei]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da89ab0ee8fa60b9d706

Background

Chromosome 9 of Trypanosoma brucei contains two closely spaced, very similar open reading frames for cyclic nucleotide specific phosphodiesterases TbrPDEB1 and TbrPDEB2. They are separated by 2379 bp, and both code for phosphodiesterases with two GAF domains in their N-terminal moieties and a catalytic domain at the C-terminus.

Methods and Findings

The current study reveals that in the Lister427 strain of T. brucei, these two genes have undergone gene conversion, replacing the coding region for the GAF-A domain of TbrPDEB2 by the corresponding region of the upstream gene TbrPDEB1. As a consequence, these strains express two slightly different versions of TbrPDEB2. TbrPDEB2a represents the wild-type phosphodiesterase, while TbrPDEB2b represents the product of the converted gene. Earlier work on the subcellular localization of TbrPDEB1 and TbrPDEB2 had demonstrated that TbrPDEB1 is predominantly located in the flagellum, whereas TbrPDEB2 partially locates to the flagellum but largely remains in the cell body. The current findings raised the question of whether this dual localization of TbrPDEB2 may reflect the two alleles. To resolve this, TbrPDEB2 of strain STIB247 that is homozygous for TbrPDEB2a was tagged in situ, and its intracellular localization was analyzed.

Conclusions

The results obtained were very similar to those found earlier with Lister427, indicating that the dual localization of TbrPDEB2 reflects its true function and is not simply due to the presence of the two different alleles. Notably, the gene conversion event is unique for the Lister427 strain and all its derivatives. Based on this finding, a convenient PCR test has been developed that allows the stringent discrimination between Lister-derived strains that are common in many laboratories and other isolates. The technique is likely very useful to resolve questions about potential mix-ups of precious field isolates with the ubiquitous Lister strain.

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