ResearchPad - arboviral-infections https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Assessing entomological risk factors for arboviral disease transmission in the French Territory of the Wallis and Futuna Islands]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_13872 The French overseas Territory of the Wallis and Futuna Islands, located in the South Pacific, has been affected by several dengue epidemics, but did not face Zika or chikungunya outbreaks, unlike other neighboring islands. The near-exclusive presence of the Aedes polynesiensis mosquito in the islands of Wallis and Futuna confirmed the role played by this mosquito as a vector of dengue fever. A local Ae. polynesiensis population was recently shown to be able to transmit the Zika virus under experimental conditions, but its susceptibility to the chikungunya virus was still unknown, and recent data on the presence of other potential arbovirus vectors were missing. Therefore, we investigated the entomological risk factors for the transmission of arboviral diseases in the Wallis and Futuna Islands. We reported the occurrence and distribution of different Aedes species, especially the abundant presence of Ae. polynesiensis across the territory and the spread of Ae. aegypti in the island of Wallis. Our results demonstrated the ability of local Ae. polynesiensis populations to transmit the chikungunya virus. These findings highlight the risk of arbovirus transmission in the Wallis and Futuna Islands and provide relevant data to guide prevention and vector control strategies in the territory.

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<![CDATA[The association between Zika virus infection and microcephaly in Brazil 2015–2017: An observational analysis of over 4 million births]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c882414d5eed0c484639707

Background

In 2015, high rates of microcephaly were reported in Northeast Brazil following the first South American Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreak. Reported microcephaly rates in other Zika-affected areas were significantly lower, suggesting alternate causes or the involvement of arboviral cofactors in exacerbating microcephaly rates.

Methods and findings

We merged data from multiple national reporting databases in Brazil to estimate exposure to 9 known or hypothesized causes of microcephaly for every pregnancy nationwide since the beginning of the ZIKV outbreak; this generated between 3.6 and 5.4 million cases (depending on analysis) over the time period 1 January 2015–23 May 2017. The association between ZIKV and microcephaly was statistically tested against models with alternative causes or with effect modifiers. We found no evidence for alternative non-ZIKV causes of the 2015–2017 microcephaly outbreak, nor that concurrent exposure to arbovirus infection or vaccination modified risk. We estimate an absolute risk of microcephaly of 40.8 (95% CI 34.2–49.3) per 10,000 births and a relative risk of 16.8 (95% CI 3.2–369.1) given ZIKV infection in the first or second trimester of pregnancy; however, because ZIKV infection rates were highly variable, most pregnant women in Brazil during the ZIKV outbreak will have been subject to lower risk levels. Statistically significant associations of ZIKV with other birth defects were also detected, but at lower relative risks than that of microcephaly (relative risk < 1.5). Our analysis was limited by missing data prior to the establishment of nationwide ZIKV surveillance, and its findings may be affected by unmeasured confounding causes of microcephaly not available in routinely collected surveillance data.

Conclusions

This study strengthens the evidence that congenital ZIKV infection, particularly in the first 2 trimesters of pregnancy, is associated with microcephaly and less frequently with other birth defects. The finding of no alternative causes for geographic differences in microcephaly rate leads us to hypothesize that the Northeast region was disproportionately affected by this Zika outbreak, with 94% of an estimated 8.5 million total cases occurring in this region, suggesting a need for seroprevalence surveys to determine the underlying reason.

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<![CDATA[Arbovirus coinfection and co-transmission: A neglected public health concern?]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c50c455d5eed0c4845e8560

Epidemiological synergy between outbreaks of viruses transmitted by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, such as chikungunya, dengue, and Zika viruses, has resulted in coinfection of humans with multiple viruses. Despite the potential impact on public health, we know only little about the occurrence and consequences of such coinfections. Here, we review the impact of coinfection on clinical disease in humans, discuss the possibility for co-transmission from mosquito to human, and describe a role for modeling transmission dynamics at various levels of co-transmission. Solving the mystery of virus coinfections will reveal whether they should be viewed as a serious concern for public health.

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<![CDATA[Molecular characterization of viruses associated with encephalitis in São Paulo, Brazil]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c46657cd5eed0c48451968d

The objective of this study was to characterize the prevalence of viral encephalitis due to arbovirus infection of the Togaviridae and Flaviviridae families in São Paulo, Brazil. A total of 500 cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples collected between August 2012 and January 2013, from patients with symptoms of acute encephalitis were analyzed. Findings suggestive of viral encephalitis—elevations in cell concentration, glucose and total protein—were observed in 234 (46.8%) samples, designated as Group 1. The remaining 266 samples comprised Group 2. All samples were tested for Flaviviruses (dengue virus 1, 2, 3 and 4, yellow fever virus and West Nile virus), Alphavirus (NS5 region) and enterovirus by RT- PCR and for herpesviruses and enteroviruses using CLART-Entherpex. A presumptive viral etiological agent was detected in 26 samples (5.2%), 18 (8.0%) in Group 1 and 8 (3.0%) in Group 2. In Group 1 human herpesviruses were detected in 9 cases, enteroviruses in 7 cases, dengue viruses (DENV) in 2 CSFs and St. Louis encephalitis virus (SLEV) in one case. In Group 2 there were 3 CSFs positive for human herpesviruses, 2 for enteroviruses, 2 for DENV and 1 for SLEV. Detection of arboviruses, even though present in a minority of infected patients, identifies these viruses as a probable etiological agent of encephalitis. This is of special concern in regions where this class of viruses is endemic and has been linked to other recent epidemics.

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<![CDATA[Alternative strategies for mosquito-borne arbovirus control]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c37b78cd5eed0c4844903f9

Background

Mosquito-borne viruses—such as Zika, chikungunya, dengue fever, and yellow fever, among others—are of global importance. Although vaccine development for prevention of mosquito-borne arbovirus infections has been a focus, mitigation strategies continue to rely on vector control. However, vector control has failed to prevent recent epidemics and arrest expanding geographic distribution of key arboviruses, such as dengue. As a consequence, there has been increasing necessity to further optimize current strategies within integrated approaches and advance development of alternative, innovative strategies for the control of mosquito-borne arboviruses.

Methods and findings

This review, intended as a general overview, is one of a series being generated by the Worldwide Insecticide resistance Network (WIN). The alternative strategies discussed reflect those that are currently under evaluation for public health value by the World Health Organization (WHO) and represent strategies of focus by globally recognized public health stakeholders as potential insecticide resistance (IR)-mitigating strategies. Conditions where these alternative strategies could offer greatest public health value in consideration of mitigating IR will be dependent on the anticipated mechanism of action. Arguably, the most pressing need for endorsement of the strategies described here will be the epidemiological evidence of a public health impact.

Conclusions

As the burden of mosquito-borne arboviruses, predominately those transmitted by Aedes aegypti and A. albopictus, continues to grow at a global scale, new vector-control tools and integrated strategies will be required to meet public health demands. Decisions regarding implementation of alternative strategies will depend on key ecoepidemiological parameters that each is intended to optimally impact toward driving down arbovirus transmission.

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<![CDATA[Potential inconsistencies in Zika surveillance data and our understanding of risk during pregnancy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c1813a1d5eed0c48477565b

Background

A significant increase in microcephaly incidence was reported in Northeast Brazil at the end of 2015, which has since been attributed to an epidemic of Zika virus (ZIKV) infections earlier that year. Further incidence of congenital Zika syndrome (CZS) was expected following waves of ZIKV infection throughout Latin America; however, only modest increases in microcephaly and CZS incidence have since been observed. The quantitative relationship between ZIKV infection, gestational age and congenital outcome remains poorly understood.

Methodology/Principle findings

We characterised the gestational-age-varying risk of microcephaly given ZIKV infection using publicly available incidence data from multiple locations in Brazil and Colombia. We found that the relative timings and shapes of ZIKV infection and microcephaly incidence curves suggested different gestational risk profiles for different locations, varying in both the duration and magnitude of gestational risk. Data from Northeast Brazil suggested a narrow window of risk during the first trimester, whereas data from Colombia suggested persistent risk throughout pregnancy. We then used the model to estimate which combination of behavioural and reporting changes would have been sufficient to explain the absence of a second microcephaly incidence wave in Bahia, Brazil; a population for which we had two years of data. We found that a 18.9-fold increase in ZIKV infection reporting rate was consistent with observed patterns.

Conclusions

Our study illustrates how surveillance data may be used in principle to answer key questions in the absence of directed epidemiological studies. However, in this case, we suggest that currently available surveillance data are insufficient to accurately estimate the gestational-age-varying risk of microcephaly from ZIKV infection. The methods used here may be of use in future outbreaks and may help to inform improved surveillance and interpretation in countries yet to experience an outbreak of ZIKV infection.

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<![CDATA[Vertical transmission of naturally occurring Bunyamwera and insect-specific flavivirus infections in mosquitoes from islands and mainland shores of Lakes Victoria and Baringo in Kenya]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5bfc6252d5eed0c484ec8441

Background

Many arboviruses transmitted by mosquitoes have been implicated as causative agents of both human and animal illnesses in East Africa. Although epidemics of arboviral emerging infectious diseases have risen in frequency in recent years, the extent to which mosquitoes maintain pathogens in circulation during inter-epidemic periods is still poorly understood. This study aimed to investigate whether arboviruses may be maintained by vertical transmission via immature life stages of different mosquito vector species.

Methodology

We collected immature mosquitoes (egg, larva, pupa) on the shores and islands of Lake Baringo and Lake Victoria in western Kenya and reared them to adults. Mosquito pools (≤25 specimens/pool) of each species were screened for mosquito-borne viruses by high-resolution melting analysis and sequencing of multiplex PCR products of genus-specific primers (alphaviruses, flaviviruses, phleboviruses and Bunyamwera-group orthobunyaviruses). We further confirmed positive samples by culturing in baby hamster kidney and Aedes mosquito cell lines and re-sequencing.

Principal findings

Culex univittatus (2/31pools) and Anopheles gambiae (1/77 pools) from the Lake Victoria region were positive for Bunyamwera virus, a pathogenic virus that is of public health concern. In addition, Aedes aegypti (3/50), Aedes luteocephalus (3/13), Aedes spp. (2/15), and Culex pipiens (1/140) pools were positive for Aedes flaviviruses at Lake Victoria, whereas at Lake Baringo, three pools of An. gambiae mosquitoes were positive for Anopheles flavivirus. These insect-specific flaviviruses (ISFVs), which are presumably non-pathogenic to vertebrates, were found in known medically important arbovirus and malaria vectors.

Conclusions

Our results suggest that not only ISFVs, but also a pathogenic arbovirus, are naturally maintained within mosquito populations by vertical transmission, even in the absence of vertebrate hosts. Therefore, virus and vector surveillance, even during inter-epidemics, and the study of vector-arbovirus-ISFV interactions, may aid in identifying arbovirus transmission risks, with the potential to inform control strategies that lead to disease prevention.

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<![CDATA[Current challenges and implications for dengue, chikungunya and Zika seroprevalence studies worldwide: A scoping review]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b60074a463d7e39c55261fe

Background

Arboviral infections are a public health concern and an escalating problem worldwide. Estimating the burden of these diseases represents a major challenge that is complicated by the large number of unapparent infections, especially those of dengue fever. Serological surveys are thus required to identify the distribution of these diseases and measure their impact. Therefore, we undertook a scoping review of the literature to describe and summarize epidemiological practices, findings and insights related to seroprevalence studies of dengue, chikungunya and Zika virus, which have rapidly expanded across the globe in recent years.

Methodology/Principal findings

Relevant studies were retrieved through a literature search of MEDLINE, WHOLIS, Lilacs, SciELO and Scopus (2000 to 2018). In total, 1389 publications were identified. Studies addressing the seroprevalence of dengue, chikungunya and/or Zika written in English or French and meeting the inclusion and exclusion criteria were included. In total, 147 studies were included, from which 185 data points were retrieved, as some studies used several different samples. Most of the studies were exclusively conducted on dengue (66.5%), but 16% were exclusively conducted on chikungunya, and 7 were exclusively conducted on Zika; the remainder were conducted on multiple arboviruses. A wide range of designs were applied, but most studies were conducted in the general population (39%) and in households (41%). Although several assays were used, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) were the predominant test used (77%). The temporal distribution of chikungunya studies followed the virus during its rapid expansion since 2004. The results revealed heterogeneity of arboviruses seroprevalence between continents and within a given country for dengue, chikungunya and Zika viruses, ranging from 0 to 100%, 76% and 73% respectively.

Conclusions/Significance

Serological surveys provide the most direct measurement for defining the immunity landscape for infectious diseases, but the methodology remains difficult to implement. Overall, dengue, chikungunya and Zika serosurveys followed the expansion of these arboviruses, but there remain gaps in their geographic distribution. This review addresses the challenges for researchers regarding study design biases. Moreover, the development of reliable, rapid and affordable diagnosis tools represents a significant issue concerning the ability of seroprevalence surveys to differentiate infections when multiple viruses co-circulate.

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<![CDATA[Pregnant women co-infected with HIV and Zika: Outcomes and birth defects in infants according to maternal symptomatology]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b4a289d463d7e4513b8980d

Background

Zika virus (ZIKV) was first isolated in Uganda in 1947. In Brazil, the first reported case of ZIKV infection was in May 2015. Additionally, dengue (DENV) is endemic and there has been a recent outbreak of chikungunya (CHIKV). Since the clinical manifestations of different arboviral infections (AI) can be similar, definitive diagnosis requires laboratory testing.

Objectives

To determine the prevalence of ZIKV, DENV, and CHIKV infections in a Brazilian cohort of HIV-infected pregnant women, to assess clinical/immunological characteristics and pregnancy outcomes of women with evidence of recent AI.

Study design

Laboratory diagnosis of ZIKV, DENV and CHIKV infections utilized serological assays, RT-PCR and PRNT. The tests were performed at the first visit, 34–36 weeks of gestation and at any time if a woman had symptoms suggestive of AI. Mann-Whitney tests were used for comparison of medians, Chi-square or Fisher’s to compare proportions; p< 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Poisson regression was used to analyze risk factors for central nervous system (CNS) malformations in the infant according to maternal symptomatology.

Results

Of 219 HIV-infected pregnant women enrolled, 92% were DENV IgG+; 47(22%) had laboratory evidence of recent AI. Of these, 34 (72%) were ZIKV+, nine (19%) CHIKV+, and two (4%) DENV+. Symptoms consistent with AI were observed in 23 (10%) women, of whom 10 (43%) were ZIKV+, eight (35%) CHIKV+. No CNS abnormalities were observed among infants of DENV+ or CHIKV+ women; four infants with CNS abnormalities were born to ZIKV+ women (three symptomatic). Infants born to ZIKV+ women had a higher risk of CNS malformations if the mother was symptomatic (RR = 7.20), albeit not statistically significant (p = 0.066).

Conclusions

Among HIV-infected pregnant women with laboratory evidence of a recent AI, 72% were ZIKV-infected. In this cohort, CNS malformations occurred among infants born to both symptomatic and asymptomatic pregnant women with Zika infection.

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<![CDATA[Detection and phylogenetic characterization of arbovirus dual-infections among persons during a chikungunya fever outbreak, Haiti 2014]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b28b38b463d7e126303d2a6

In the context of recent arbovirus epidemics, questions about the frequency of simultaneous infection of patients with different arbovirus species have been raised. In 2014, a major Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) epidemic impacted the Caribbean and South America. As part of ongoing screening of schoolchildren presenting with acute undifferentiated febrile illness in rural Haiti, we used RT-PCR to identify CHIKV infections in 82 of 100 children with this diagnosis during May—August 2014. Among these, eight were infected with a second arbovirus: six with Zika virus (ZIKV), one with Dengue virus serotype 2, and one with Mayaro virus (MAYV). These dual infections were only detected following culture of the specimen, suggesting low viral loads of the co-infecting species. Phylogenetic analyses indicated that the ZIKV and MAYV strains differ from those detected later in 2014 and 2015, respectively. Moreover, CHIKV and ZIKV strains from co-infected patients clustered monophyletically in their respective phylogeny, and clock calibration traced back the common ancestor of each clade to an overlapping timeframe of introduction of these arboviruses onto the island.

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<![CDATA[Limited Dengue Virus Replication in Field-Collected Aedes aegypti Mosquitoes Infected with Wolbachia]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da43ab0ee8fa60b8aea4

Introduction

Dengue is one of the most widespread mosquito-borne diseases in the world. The causative agent, dengue virus (DENV), is primarily transmitted by the mosquito Aedes aegypti, a species that has proved difficult to control using conventional methods. The discovery that A. aegypti transinfected with the wMel strain of Wolbachia showed limited DENV replication led to trial field releases of these mosquitoes in Cairns, Australia as a biocontrol strategy for the virus.

Methodology/Principal Findings

Field collected wMel mosquitoes that were challenged with three DENV serotypes displayed limited rates of body infection, viral replication and dissemination to the head compared to uninfected controls. Rates of dengue infection, replication and dissemination in field wMel mosquitoes were similar to those observed in the original transinfected wMel line that had been maintained in the laboratory. We found that wMel was distributed in similar body tissues in field mosquitoes as in laboratory ones, but, at seven days following blood-feeding, wMel densities increased to a greater extent in field mosquitoes.

Conclusions/Significance

Our results indicate that virus-blocking is likely to persist in Wolbachia-infected mosquitoes after their release and establishment in wild populations, suggesting that Wolbachia biocontrol may be a successful strategy for reducing dengue transmission in the field.

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<![CDATA[The Global Burden of Disease Study 2010: Interpretation and Implications for the Neglected Tropical Diseases]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da7eab0ee8fa60b999d9 ]]> <![CDATA[A Novel MVA Vectored Chikungunya Virus Vaccine Elicits Protective Immunity in Mice]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da2cab0ee8fa60b82a9f

Background

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is a re-emerging arbovirus associated with febrile illness often accompanied by rash and arthralgia that may persist for several years. Outbreaks are associated with high morbidity and create a public health challenge for countries affected. Recent outbreaks have occurred in both Europe and the Americas, suggesting CHIKV may continue to spread. Despite the sustained threat of the virus, there is no approved vaccine or antiviral therapy against CHIKV. Therefore, it is critical to develop a vaccine that is both well tolerated and highly protective.

Methodology/Principal Findings

In this study, we describe the construction and characterization of a modified Vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) virus expressing CHIKV E3 and E2 proteins (MVA-CHIK) that protected several mouse models from challenge with CHIKV. In particular, BALB/c mice were completely protected against viremia upon challenge with CHIKV after two doses of MVA-CHIK. Additionally, A129 mice (deficient in IFNα/β) were protected from viremia, footpad swelling, and mortality. While high anti-virus antibodies were elicited, low or undetectable levels of neutralizing antibodies were produced in both mouse models. However, passive transfer of MVA-CHIK immune serum to naïve mice did not protect against mortality, suggesting that antibodies may not be the main effectors of protection afforded by MVA-CHIK. Furthermore, depletion of CD4+, but not CD8+ T-cells from vaccinated mice resulted in 100% mortality, implicating the indispensable role of CD4+ T-cells in the protection afforded by MVA-CHIK.

Conclusions/Significance

The results presented herein demonstrate the potential of MVA to effectively express CHIKV E3-E2 proteins and generate protective immune responses. Our findings challenge the assumption that only neutralizing antibodies are effective in providing protection against CHIKV, and provides a framework for the development of novel, more effective vaccine strategies to combat CHIKV.

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<![CDATA[Neurocognitive Outcome of Children Exposed to Perinatal Mother-to-Child Chikungunya Virus Infection: The CHIMERE Cohort Study on Reunion Island]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da43ab0ee8fa60b8ac16

Background

Little is known about the neurocognitive outcome in children exposed to perinatal mother-to-child Chikungunya virus (p-CHIKV) infection.

Methods

The CHIMERE ambispective cohort study compared the neurocognitive function of 33 p-CHIKV-infected children (all but one enrolled retrospectively) at around two years of age with 135 uninfected peers (all enrolled prospectively). Psychomotor development was assessed using the revised Brunet-Lezine scale, examiners blinded to infectious status. Development quotients (DQ) with subscores covering movement/posture, coordination, language, sociability skills were calculated. Predictors of global neurodevelopmental delay (GND, DQ≤85), were investigated using multivariate Poisson regression modeling. Neuroradiologic follow-up using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans was proposed for most of the children with severe forms.

Results

The mean DQ score was 86.3 (95%CI: 81.0–91.5) in infected children compared to 100.2 (95%CI: 98.0–102.5) in uninfected peers (P<0.001). Fifty-one percent (n = 17) of infected children had a GND compared to 15% (n = 21) of uninfected children (P<0.001). Specific neurocognitive delays in p-CHIKV-infected children were as follows: coordination and language (57%), sociability (36%), movement/posture (27%). After adjustment for maternal social situation, small for gestational age, and head circumference, p-CHIKV infection was found associated with GND (incidence rate ratio: 2.79, 95%CI: 1.45–5.34). Further adjustments on gestational age or breastfeeding did not change the independent effect of CHIKV infection on neurocognitive outcome. The mean DQ of p-CHIKV-infected children was lower in severe encephalopathic children than in non-severe children (77.6 versus 91.2, P<0.001). Of the 12 cases of CHIKV neonatal encephalopathy, five developed a microcephaly (head circumference <−2 standard deviations) and four matched the definition of cerebral palsy. MRI scans showed severe restrictions of white matter areas, predominant in the frontal lobes in these children.

Conclusions

The neurocognitive outcome of children exposed to perinatal mother-to-child CHIKV infection is poor. Severe CHIKV neonatal encephalopathy is associated with an even poorer outcome.

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<![CDATA[First Attempt To Validate Human IgG Antibody Response to Nterm-34kDa Salivary Peptide as Biomarker for Evaluating Exposure to Aedes aegypti Bites]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db08ab0ee8fa60bc90e5

Background

Much effort is being devoted for developing new indicators to evaluate the human exposure to Aedes mosquito bites and the risk of arbovirus transmission. Human antibody (Ab) responses to mosquito salivary components could represent a promising tool for evaluating the human-vector contact.

Methodology/Principal findings

To develop a specific biomarker of human exposure to Aedes aegypti bites, we measured IgG Ab response to Ae. aegypti Nterm-34 kDa salivary peptide in exposed children in 7 villages of Southern Benin (West Africa). Results showed that specific IgG response presented high inter-individual heterogeneity between villages. IgG response was associated with rainfall and IgG level increased from dry (low exposure) to rainy (high exposure) seasons. These findings indicate that IgG Ab to Nterm-34 kDa salivary peptide may represent a reliable biomarker to detect variation in human exposure to Ae. aegypti bites.

Conclusion/Significance

This preliminary study highlights the potential use of Ab response to this salivary peptide for evaluating human exposure to Ae. aegypti. This biomarker could represent a new promising tool for assessing the risk of arbovirus transmission and for evaluating the efficacy of vector control interventions.

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<![CDATA[Clinical Survey of Dengue Virus Circulation in the Republic of Djibouti between 2011 and 2014 Identifies Serotype 3 Epidemic and Recommends Clinical Diagnosis Guidelines for Resource Limited Settings]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da03ab0ee8fa60b74c98

Dengue virus is endemic globally, throughout tropical and sub-tropical regions. While the number of epidemics due to the four DENV serotypes is pronounced in East Africa, the total number of cases reported in Africa (16 million infections) remained at low levels compared to Asia (70 million infections). The French Armed forces Health Service provides epidemiological surveillance support in the Republic of Djibouti through the Bouffard Military hospital. Between 2011 and 2014, clinical and biological data of suspected dengue syndromes were collected at the Bouffard Military hospital and analyzed to improve Dengue clinical diagnosis and evaluate its circulation in East Africa. Examining samples from patients that presented one or more Dengue-like symptoms the study evidenced 128 Dengue cases among 354 suspected cases (36.2% of the non-malarial Dengue-like syndromes). It also demonstrated the circulation of serotypes 1 and 2 and reports the first epidemic of serotype 3 infections in Djibouti which was found in all of the hospitalized patients in this study. Based on these results we have determined that screening for Malaria and the presence of the arthralgia, gastro-intestinal symptoms and lymphopenia < 1,000cell/ mm3 allows for negative predictive value and specificity of diagnosis in isolated areas superior to 80% up to day 6. This study also provides evidence for an epidemic of Dengue virus serotype 3 previously not detected in Djibouti.

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<![CDATA[Rickettsial Disease in the Peruvian Amazon Basin]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9e1ab0ee8fa60b69a9a

Using a large, passive, clinic-based surveillance program in Iquitos, Peru, we characterized the prevalence of rickettsial infections among undifferentiated febrile cases and obtained evidence of pathogen transmission in potential domestic reservoir contacts and their ectoparasites. Blood specimens from humans and animals were assayed for spotted fever group rickettsiae (SFGR) and typhus group rickettsiae (TGR) by ELISA and/or PCR; ectoparasites were screened by PCR. Logistic regression was used to determine associations between patient history, demographic characteristics of participants and symptoms, clinical findings and outcome of rickettsial infection. Of the 2,054 enrolled participants, almost 2% showed evidence of seroconversion or a 4-fold rise in antibody titers specific for rickettsiae between acute and convalescent blood samples. Of 190 fleas (Ctenocephalides felis) and 60 ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus) tested, 185 (97.4%) and 3 (5%), respectively, were positive for Rickettsia spp. Candidatus Rickettsia asemboensis was identified in 100% and 33% of the fleas and ticks tested, respectively. Collectively, our serologic data indicates that human pathogenic SFGR are present in the Peruvian Amazon and pose a significant risk of infection to individuals exposed to wild, domestic and peri-domestic animals and their ectoparasites.

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<![CDATA[Zika virus displacement by a chikungunya outbreak in Recife, Brazil]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5ab18496463d7e5ca175d924

Background

Several arboviruses, including dengue virus (DENV), Zika virus (ZIKV) and chikungunya virus (CHIKV), transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes, circulate in northeast Brazil. Diseases caused by these viruses are of great public health relevance, however, their epidemiological features in areas where the three viruses co-circulate are scarce. Here, we present analyses of molecular and serological diagnostics in a prospective study of acute febrile patients recruited from May 2015 to May 2016 in Recife, Brazil.

Methods

Two hundred sixty-three acute febrile patients with symptoms suggestive of an arboviral disease who attended an urgent heath care clinic in the Recife Metropolitan Region in northeast Brazil were enrolled. Acute and convalescent blood samples were collected and tested using molecular and serological assays for infection with DENV, ZIKV and CHIKV.

Results

Quantitative real-time reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reactions (qRTPCR) performed on acute phase sera detected no patients positive for DENV, but 26 (9.9%) positive for ZIKV and 132 (50.2%) positive for CHIKV. There were a few suspected and only one confirmed dengue case. Specific serological assays for ZIKV and CHIKV confirmed the qRTPCR data. Analyses of DENV IgM and IgG ELISAs in the context of qRTPCR results suggested high levels of cross reactive antibodies in ZIKV-positive samples. Results from neutralization assays highly corroborated those from qRTPCR and ZIKV ELISA, indicating very few positive DENV cases. ZIKV infections were temporally clustered in the first months of the study and started to decrease concomitantly with an increase in CHIKV infections in August 2015. The proportion of CHIKV infections increased significantly in September 2015 and remained high until the end of the study period, with an average of 84.7% of recruited patients being diagnosed from August 2015 to May 2016. ZIKV infections exhibited a female bias and the cases were spread over the study site, while CHIKV cases had a male bias and were spatially clustered in each month.

Conclusions

In 2015–2016 in the Recife Metropolitan Region, we detected the tail end of a Zika epidemic, which was displaced by a chikungunya epidemic. Few dengue cases were identified despite a high number of official dengue notifications in the area during this period. We show here important epidemiological features of these cases.

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<![CDATA[Unrecognized Emergence of Chikungunya Virus during a Zika Virus Outbreak in Salvador, Brazil]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db54ab0ee8fa60bdcff9

Background

Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) entered Brazil in 2014, causing a large outbreak in Feira de Santana, state of Bahia. Although cases have been recorded in Salvador, the capital of Bahia, located ~100 km of Feira de Santana, CHIKV transmission has not been perceived to occur epidemically, largely contrasting with the Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreak and ensuing complications reaching the city in 2015.

Methodology/Principal Findings

This study aimed to determine the intensity of CHIKV transmission in Salvador between November 2014 and April 2016. Results of all the CHIKV laboratory tests performed in the public sector were obtained and the frequency of positivity was analyzed by epidemiological week. Of the 2,736 tests analyzed, 456 (16.7%) were positive. An increasing in the positivity rate was observed, starting in January/2015, and peaking at 68% in August, shortly after the exanthematous illness outbreak attributed to ZIKV.

Conclusions/Significance

Public health authorities and health professionals did not immediately detect the increase in CHIKV cases, likely because all the attention was directed to the ZIKV outbreak and ensuing complications. It is important that regions in the world that harbor arbovirus vectors and did not experience intense ZIKV and CHIKV transmission be prepared for the potential co-emergence of these two viruses.

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<![CDATA[Iquitos Virus: A Novel Reassortant Orthobunyavirus Associated with Human Illness in Peru]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da17ab0ee8fa60b7bb92

Oropouche (ORO) virus, a member of the Simbu serogroup, is one of the few human pathogens in the Orthobunyavirus genus in the family Bunyaviridae. Genetic analyses of ORO-like strains from Iquitos, Peru, identified a novel reassortant containing the S and L segments of ORO virus and the M segment of a novel Simbu serogroup virus. This new pathogen, which we named Iquitos (IQT) virus, was first isolated during 1999 from a febrile patient in Iquitos, an Amazonian city in Peru. Subsequently, the virus was identified as the cause of outbreaks of “Oropouche fever” during 2005 and 2006 in Iquitos. In addition to the identification of 17 isolates of IQT virus between 1999 and 2006, surveys for neutralizing antibody among Iquitos residents revealed prevalence rates of 14.9% for ORO virus and 15.4% for IQT virus. Limited studies indicate that prior infection with ORO virus does not seem to protect against disease caused with the IQT virus infection. Identification of a new Orthobunyavirus human pathogen in the Amazon region of Peru highlights the need for strengthening surveillance activities and laboratory capabilities, and investigating the emergence of new pathogens in tropical regions of South America.

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