Current Infection Control News and Events

Current Infection Control News and Events, Infection Control News Articles.
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Mouse study shows bacteriophage therapy could fight drug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae
Using viruses instead of antibiotics to tame troublesome drug-resistant bacteria is a promising strategy, known as bacteriophage or ''phage therapy.'' Scientists at the National Institutes of Health have used two different bacteriophage viruses individually and then together to successfully treat research mice infected with multidrug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae sequence type 258 (ST258). (2021-02-23)

Hospital hygiene: A closer look reveals realistic frequency of infection
A research team led by Inselspital, Bern University Hospital and the University of Bern found a correlation between the frequency of infections after surgery and performance in quality audits. Lower surgical site infection rates correlate with a lower audit score. In other words, looking more closely reveals more reported infections. Recommendations for possible correction are presented. (2021-02-18)

Older adults and antibiotics: Study shows healthy attitudes but unhealthy practices
While most adults over 50 understand that overuse of antibiotics is a problem, and say they're cautious about taking the drugs, a sizable minority have used antibiotics for something other than their original purpose, and appear to think the drugs could help treat colds, which are caused by viruses not bacteria. (2021-02-18)

Targeting the SARS-CoV-2 main protease yields promise in transgenic mouse model
Inhibitors based on approved drugs and designed to disrupt the SARS-CoV-2 viral protein Mpro display strong antiviral activity both in vitro and in a transgenic mouse model, a new study reports. (2021-02-18)

Immune system protects children from severe COVID-19
Children are protected from severe COVID-19 because their innate immune system is quick to attack the virus, a new study has found. (2021-02-17)

A peptide that inhibits virus transmission among ferrets may point to a promising treatment
An engineered peptide given to ferrets two days before they were co-housed with SARS-CoV-2-infected animals prevented virus transmission to the treated ferrets, a new study shows. (2021-02-17)

TB study reveals potential targets to treat and control infection
Researchers at the Southwest National Primate Research Center (SNPRC) at Texas Biomedical Research Institute (Texas Biomed) may have found a new pathway to treat and control tuberculosis (TB), the disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). Using single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNAseq), a next-generation sequencing technology, scientists were able to further define the mechanisms that lead to TB infection and latency. (2021-02-16)

Finding coronavirus's helper proteins
A group of scientists led by EMBL's Mikhail Savitski, Nassos Typas, and Pedro Beltrao, and collaborator Steeve Boulant at Heidelberg University Hospital, have analysed how the novel coronavirus affects proteins in human cells. They identified several human proteins as potential drug targets to prevent viral replication. (2021-02-16)

First test for all known human coronaviruses, including new SARS-CoV-2 variants
Scientists at the Center for Infection and Immunity (CII) at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health and SunYat-Sen University in China have set the stage for the development of highly sensitive antibody tests for infection with all known human coronaviruses, including new variants of SARS-CoV-2. These tests should also allow differentiation of immune responses due to infection and vaccination. The research is published in Communications Biology, a Nature journal. (2021-02-16)

COVID-19 infection rates high in pregnant women
The study also showed that the number of COVID-19 infections in pregnant patients from nearly all communities of color in Washington was high. There was a twofold to fourfold higher prevalence of pregnant patients with COVID-19 infections from communities of color than expected based on the race-ethnicity distribution of pregnant women in Washington in 2018. (2021-02-16)

Antibody-based COVID-19 treatments work best in concert with immune cells
Antibody-based drugs have been authorized for emergency use in COVID-19 patients by the Food and Drug Administration. Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have discovered that the ability to interact with other elements of the immune system is an indispensable part of the effectiveness of such antibodies. The findings could help improve the design of the next generation of antibody-based COVID-19 drugs. (2021-02-16)

T cells depressed
In chronic infections, the immune system can become exhausted. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich researchers have looked into how this works. (2021-02-12)

Scientists identify how harmless gut bacteria "turn bad"
An international team of scientists has determined how harmless E. coli gut bacteria in chickens can easily pick up the genes required to evolve to cause a life-threatening infection. Their study, published in Nature Communications, warns that such infections not only affect the poultry industry but could also potentially cross over to infect humans. (2021-02-12)

RUDN University veterinarians tested a new drug against pneumonia in calves
Respiratory tract diseases in young animals of the cattle are a big issue for world agriculture and food safety because a bacterium that causes them is resistant to most antibiotics. A team of veterinarians from RUDN University developed and tested a complex preparation called gentaminoseleferon that could help treat respiratory infection in calves. (2021-02-10)

New tool helps clinicians assess patients who develop COVID-19 symptoms
The newly developed COvid Risk cALculator (CORAL) standardizes the assessment of emergency department and hospitalized patients who develop symptoms of COVID-19. The tool minimizes the chance that a patient with a false-negative test escapes detection and indicates when a patient's probability of having COVID-19 is low enough that isolation can be discontinued. (2021-02-10)

Researchers unravel what makes someone a COVID-19 super-spreader
Researchers at Tulane University, Harvard University, MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital have learned that obesity, age and COVID-19 infection correlate with a propensity to breathe out more respiratory droplets -- key spreaders of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Their findings were published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. (2021-02-10)

Antiviral proves effective at preventing, treating COVID-19 in lab
Publishing their work in Nature, scientists at the UNC School of Medicine and UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health tested how the orally administered experimental drug EIDD-2801 halts SARS-CoV-2 replication and prevents infection of human cells in a new in vivo model containing human lung tissue. (2021-02-09)

The genetic susceptibility of people with Down's syndrome to COVID-19
A study reveals the genetic factors that may expose or protect people with Down syndrome from SARS-CoV-2. TMPRSS2, a gene that codes for an enzyme critical for aiding the entry of SARS-CoV-2 in human cells, had 60% higher levels of expression in Down syndrome. The researchers also found higher expression levels for CXCL10, a gene that can trigger cytokine storms. The authors call to vaccinate people with Down syndrome against COVID-19 as a priority. (2021-02-08)

New drug target for Ebola, Marburg viruses
Researchers have identified a previously unknown site on the filovirus glycoprotein to which small drug molecules can bind and prevent infection -- blocking both sites may be a more effective treatment while reducing the risk of side effects. (2021-02-08)

In-depth analysis identifies causes and mitigation efforts in COVID-19 cluster
As part of the response to the cluster, Brigham researchers also conducted a case-control study and whole-genome sequencing to identify factors that may have been involved in the virus's spread as well as the most likely chain of transmission. The lessons gleaned from their data have helped inform infection control efforts. (2021-02-08)

Spicy perfection isn't to prevent infection
Spicy food is considered an example of ''Darwinian gastronomy'': selection for antimicrobial ingredients to counter infection risk. By analysing over thirty thousand recipes, we show that average number of spices per recipe is more strongly associated with socioeconomic factors than infectious disease. (2021-02-04)

Dialysis patients have 4-fold greater risk of dying from COVID-19
People undergoing long-term dialysis are almost 4 times more likely to die from COVID-19 and should be prioritized for vaccination, found a new Ontario study published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal). (2021-02-04)

Asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections among people entering China
Researchers assessed the proportion of international entrants to China with asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection. Since April, people entering China via air, sea or land have been mandatorily tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection by PCR test at border checkpoints. Those who have tested positive have been hospitalized in isolation and those who have tested negative have been quarantined for 14 days at centralized facilities and then retested on day 13. (2021-02-02)

Research finds COVID plasma donation is fuelled by kindness
Researchers have given new insights into why people would choose to donate Covid-19 plasma after recovering from the virus, which will be used to support the recruitment of convalescent plasma donors to help treat current Covid-19 patients and support ongoing trials. (2021-02-02)

U of M study shows enhanced accuracy of CMV detection method in newborn screening
Mark Schleiss, MD, pediatric infectious disease physician with the University of Minnesota Medical School and M Health Fairview, led a study that used improved techniques to show that the dried blood spot taken at birth can, in fact, find CMV infection in the newborn with almost 90% accuracy. The study was recently published in JAMA Pediatrics. (2021-02-02)

Early functional SARS-COV-2 specific T cell response may prevent severe infection
Antibodies and T cells are components of the human immune system that directly act against viral infections and eliminate infected cells. A new study by scientists from Duke-NUS Medical School, provides evidence that an early presence of SARS-CoV-2 specific T cells in COVID-19 is likely to prevent severe disease. The study, published in Cell Reports, has important implications for the clinical management of COVID-19 patients. (2021-02-01)

New protein neutralizes COVID in tiny human kidney
Northwestern Medicine scientists have developed a new protein that acts as a trickster to neutralize the COVID-19 infection in a human kidney organoid, a miniature organ made from stem cells in the lab. (2021-02-01)

Toxin-antitoxin function fuels antibiotic-resistance research
Toxin-antitoxin (TA) systems are now known to negatively control plasmid replication, according to Thomas Wood, Biotechnology Endowed Chair and professor of chemical engineering in the Penn State College of Engineering. (2021-02-01)

Study reveals cause of common Zika virus birth defect
CLEVELAND - Cleveland Clinic researchers have described for the first time how Zika virus (ZIKV) causes one of the most common birth defects associated with prenatal infection, called brain calcification, according to new study findings published in Nature Microbiology. The findings may reveal novel strategies to prevent prenatal ZIKV brain calcification and offer important insights into how calcifications form in other congenital infections. (2021-01-28)

First study to look at potency of maternal antibodies
In a new study to be presented today at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine's (SMFM) annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting™, researchers will unveil findings that suggest that women who contract COVID-19 during pregnancy are able to make antibodies, but that transfer of these antibodies to their infants is less than expected. (2021-01-28)

Screening asymptomatic health care personnel for COVID-19 not recommended by experts
Routine screening of asymptomatic health care personnel in the absence of confirmed exposures to COVID-19 is not a recommended strategy for preventing transmission of COVID-19, according to a new review. It found that such testing is unlikely to affect the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in health care settings and could even have unintended negative consequences. (2021-01-28)

Massey researchers review geographic factors that affect HPV vaccination rates
A team of researchers from VCU Massey Cancer Center conducted the first-ever systematic review of area-level data reported in the United States between 2006 and 2020 to determine how geography, neighborhoods and sociodemographic factors impact HPV vaccination rates among adolescents and young adults. The study was published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention. (2021-01-22)

NSAIDs might exacerbate or suppress COVID-19 depending on timing, mouse study suggests
New research shows that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduced both antibody and inflammatory responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection in mice. The study appears this week in the Journal of Virology, a publication of the American Society for Microbiology. (2021-01-22)

SHEA releases COVID-19 research agenda identifying gaps in knowledge
Massive amounts of COVID-19 research has been published since the pandemic began, but much more study is needed to understand how to prevent, identify, and treat the virus. The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America is publishing a COVID-19 research agenda outlining 10 areas where we need to learn more to fight COVID-19 and future pandemics. (2021-01-21)

Using VR training to boost our sense of agency and improve motor control
Patients with motor dysfunctions are on the rise across Japan as its population continues to age. A Tohoku University researcher has developed a new method of rehabilitation using virtual reality to increase the sense of agency over our body and aid motor skills. (2021-01-20)

Hope for a vaccination against Staphylococcus areus infections?
Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) ranks among the globally most important causes of infections in humans and is considered a dreaded hospital pathogen. Active and passive immunisation against multi-resistant strains is seen as a potentially valuable alternative to antibiotic therapy. However, all vaccine candidates so far have been clinically unsuccessful. With an epitope-based immunisation, scientists at Cologne University Hospital and the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF) have now described a new vaccination strategy against S. aureus in the Nature Partner Journal NPJ VACCINES. (2021-01-20)

NIH officials highlight COVID-19 vaccine facts, unknowns for healthcare providers
Healthcare providers must be able to explain the latest data supporting the safety and efficacy of vaccines for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) so they can strongly encourage vaccination when appropriate while acknowledging that uncertainty and unknowns remain. This message comes from a new commentary co-authored by Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, and other leading NIAID scientists in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine. (2021-01-18)

Guppies have varying levels of self-control
Just like humans trying to stick to New Year's resolutions, guppies have varying levels of self-control, a new study shows. (2021-01-15)

NIH scientists identify nutrient that helps prevent bacterial infection
Scientists studying the body's natural defenses against bacterial infection have identified a nutrient--taurine--that helps the gut recall prior infections and kill invading bacteria, such as Klebsiella pneumoniae (Kpn). The finding, published in the journal Cell by scientists from five institutes of the National Institutes of Health, could aid efforts seeking alternatives to antibiotics. (2021-01-15)

Wits University scientists artificially infect mosquitoes with human malaria to advance treatment
Scientists at the Wits Research Institute for Malaria (WRIM) in partnership with the University of Pretoria and colleagues in the US, Spain and Switzerland have identified novel antiplasmodial lead compounds for mass drug administration and vector control to eliminate malaria. (2021-01-14)

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