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Clinicians' Biosecurity News Archive: 2013

  • 12/20/2013. SARS: Beyond Amoy Gardens: On the 10th anniversary of SARS, a research team from CUHK revisited the Amoy Gardens outbreak to assess whether airborne spread of the virus extended further than that 19-building complex, with results indicating greater spread than originally thought.
  • 12/06/2013. Antimicrobial Resistance--A Call to Action: The Lancet Infectious Diseases Commission has just published "Antibiotic resistance--the need for global solutions," which makes a strong case for addressing the problem of antimicrobial resistance now, before it leads to a global public health emergency.
  • 11/22/2013. Princeton Meningitis Outbreak: What is most notable about Princeton's outbreak of type B meningococcus is the FDA's response--the agency has recognized the need to employ a novel, not-yet-approved product to optimize management of this infectious disease emergency.
  • 11/08/2013. Cholera in Mexico: The cholera epidemic in Haiti has caused more than 600,000 cases and 8,000 fatalities and is prompting concern about wider spread into the Western Hemisphere, particularly now that cases linked to Haiti have been detected in the US, Cuba, and the DR.
  • 10/25/2013. Fifth Type of Dengue Discovered: Dengue poses a serious threat to human health, and a vaccine is a priority. Development has required balancing immunity to 4 strains. Now, a 5th strain has been discovered, which raises many questions and may make vaccine development even more difficult.
  • 10/11/2013. The Value of an ID Specialist: ID specialists examine patients, review records and results, think about an illness, delineate diagnoses, focus testing, and prescribe treatment—all cognitive interventions that are difficult to assign an economic value. A new study clarifies that value.
  • 09/27/2013. The Burden of Coronavirus: In addition to MERS and SARS, 4 other CoVs infect humans. Two (229E, OC43) have been known as human pathogens for decades; 2 (NL63, HKU1) were discovered post-SARS. The 229E and OC43 strains are thought responsible for a large proportion of common colds.
  • 09/13/2013. Violent Attacks on Healthcare Workers a Growing Problem: Recent reports of violence targeting healthcare workers provide evidence that the prohibition of violence against healthcare workers has degraded and requires strengthening and enforcement.
  • 08/23/2013: Meeting Video: Insights from the Front Lines of the MERS Outbreak On August 21, 2013, Dr. Ziad Memish, Deputy Minister of Health for Public Health, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, presented and spoke with Tom Inglesby about his experience with the MERS outbreak in Saudi Arabia.
  • 08/09/2013. Cyclosporiasis Outbreak Spotlights Risk of Uncommon Pathogen: An outbreak of 400+ cases of Cyclospora infection has thrust a relatively rare protozoan pathogen into the headlines and is reinforcing the need for clinicians to be aware of the presentation, diagnosis, and treatment of infection for this pathogen.
  • 07/26/2013. US TB Outbreaks Highlight Investigative and Therapeutic Challenges US tuberculosis (TB) rates continue to decline, but surveillance, control, and treatment remain challenging and expensive.
  • 07/12/2013. Blastomycosis Cluster in Wisconsin: Blastomycosis is a systemic infectious disease caused by infection with the fungus Blastomyces dermatidis. In 2010, an unusual uptick in cases occurred in north-central Wisconsin, prompting an investigation for which results have recently been published.
  • 06/20/2013. New Information on MERS Highlights Need for Infection Control and Broad Case Definition: Our evolving understanding of MERS-CoV now makes clear that clinicians and public health authorities should not be too rigid with case definitions and that adequate infection control can prevent spread of this highly lethal virus.
  • 05/31/2013. EV71 and Acute Flaccid Paralysis: EV71 is increasingly recognized as a pathogen that could cause severe disease and widespread infection. Australia's AFP surveillance program recently identified it in 36% of referred cases, highlighting the potential virulence of this emerging pathogen.
  • 05/17/2013. Little Clinical Research Conducted During the 2009 Pandemic: While many case and anecdotal reports were published during the pandemic, rigorous research is needed to answer crucial clinical questions during public health emergencies.
  • 05/03/2013. Statins for Treatment of Severe Sepsis: Results of a recent trial answer some questions about the use of statins for severe sepsis, but questions remain regarding their role in the treatment of specific conditions, such as influenza.
  • 04/19/2013. Factors Influencing Control of the H7N9 Epidemic: Testing expanded; case numbers are up; no evidence of sustained person-to-person transmission; there is concern about asymptomatic infection and not-yet-identified animal reservoirs; specific factors will influence control of the epidemic.
  • 04/12/2013. Update on Novel H7N9 Influenza Epidemic The epidemic of novel H7N9 avian influenza in eastern China that was first reported on March 31, 2013, continues with no sign of abating. As of 9:00 AM (EDT) today, there have been 38 confirmed cases, with 10 deaths.
  • 04/05/2013. Novel H7N9 Outbreak in China According to media reports and official announcements from the WHO,1 CDC,2 and ECDC,3 as of 8 AM on April 5, 2013, there have been 14 confirmed human cases of infection with a novel H7N9 influenza A virus in the eastern part of China.
  • 03/22/2013. Nitazoxanide for Treatment of Drug-resistant Influenza: Nitazoxanide, an FDA-approved oral anti-parasitic used to treat Giardia and Cryptosporidium infections was recently the subject of a $44 million BARDA contract for advanced development as a treatment for drug-resistant influenza.
  • 03/08/2013. ECMO for Severe Influenza--Description of a Large French Cohort Study: In the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, ECMO was used more broadly. A study of the largest cohort of H1N1 patients treated with ECMO provides more evidence by which to judge the efficacy of this therapy, but exactly who will benefit is still not clearly established.
  • 02/22/2013. Influenza Vaccine Efficacy: As Low as 31%?: Influenza prevention relies most on annual flu vaccines, which have 60% efficacy rate even when well matched to circulating strains, and may confer no benefit to some groups. A recent study provides more evidence that current flu vaccines are deficient.
  • 02/08/2013. Monoclonal Antibodies for Biodefense: Center for Biosecurity makes the case for expanding development of mAbs for biodefense because they confer several important advantages over other MCMs: near-instant, non-permanent immunity; low rates of adverse reactions; faster pathway for development.
  • 1/25/2013. The D222G Mutation and Severe Influenza: During the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, the D222G mutation was posited to affect disease severity when it was found in isolates from 3 patients in Norway. A new article from Norwegian researchers confirms the association of this mutation with severe influenza.
  • 1/11/2013. Influenza Type C as a Cause of Pediatric Pneumonia: More sophisticated respiratory viral testing is now shedding light on the role of influenza type C in causing disease, particularly in children. A new study characterizes the role of type C in pediatric pneumonia and points to important questions.