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Volume 13, Number 4—April 2007

Volume 13, Number 4—April 2007   PDF Version [PDF - 9.89 MB - 159 pages]


  • Human Benefits of Animal Interventions for Zoonosis Control PDF Version [PDF - 86 KB - 5 pages]
    J. Zinsstag et al.
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    Although industrialized countries have been able to contain recent outbreaks of zoonotic diseases, many resource-limited and transitioning countries have not been able to react adequately. The key for controlling zoonoses such as rabies, echinococcosis, and brucellosis is to focus on the animal reservoir. In this respect, ministries of health question whether the public health sector really benefits from interventions for livestock. Cross-sectoral assessments of interventions such as mass vaccination for brucellosis in Mongolia or vaccination of dogs for rabies in Chad consider human and animal health sectors from a societal economic perspective. Combining the total societal benefits, the intervention in the animal sector saves money and provides the economic argument, which opens new approaches for the control of zoonoses in resource-limited countries through contributions from multiple sectors.


  • Hantavirus and Arenavirus Antibodies in Persons with Occupational Rodent Exposure, North America PDF Version [PDF - 112 KB - 7 pages]
    C. F. Fulhorst et al.
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    Rodents are the principal hosts of Sin Nombre virus, 4 other hantaviruses known to cause hantavirus pulmonary syndrome in North America, and the 3 North American arenaviruses. Serum samples from 757 persons who had worked with rodents in North America and handled neotomine or sigmodontine rodents were tested for antibodies against Sin Nombre virus, Whitewater Arroyo virus, Guanarito virus, and lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus. Antibodies against Sin Nombre virus were found in 4 persons, against Whitewater Arroyo virus or Guanarito virus in 2 persons, and against lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus in none. These results suggest that risk for infection with hantaviruses or arenaviruses usually is low in persons whose occupations entail close physical contact with neotomine or sigmodontine rodents in North America.

  • Influenza (H5N1) Viruses in Poultry, Russian Federation, 2005–2006 PDF Version [PDF - 399 KB - 8 pages]
    A. S. Lipatov et al.
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    We studied 7 influenza (H5N1) viruses isolated from poultry in western Siberia and the European part of the Russian Federation during July 2005–February 2006. Full genome sequences showed high homology to Qinghai-like influenza (H5N1) viruses. Phylogenetic analysis not only showed a close genetic relationship between the H5N1 strains isolated from poultry and wild migratory waterfowls but also suggested genetic reassortment among the analyzed isolates. Analysis of deduced amino acid sequences of the M2 and neuraminidase proteins showed that all isolates are potentially sensitive to currently available antiviral drugs. Pathogenicity testing showed that all studied viruses were highly pathogenic in chickens; for 3 isolates tested in mice and 2 tested in ferrets, pathogenicity was heterogeneous. Pathogenicity in mammalian models was generally correlated with Lys at residue 627 of polymerase basic protein 2.

  • Movements of Birds and Avian Influenza from Asia into Alaska PDF Version [PDF - 177 KB - 6 pages]
    K. Winker et al.
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    Asian-origin avian influenza (AI) viruses are spread in part by migratory birds. In Alaska, diverse avian hosts from Asia and the Americas overlap in a region of intercontinental avifaunal mixing. This region is hypothesized to be a zone of Asia-to-America virus transfer because birds there can mingle in waters contaminated by wild-bird–origin AI viruses. Our 7 years of AI virus surveillance among waterfowl and shorebirds in this region (1998–2004; 8,254 samples) showed remarkably low infection rates (0.06%). Our findings suggest an Arctic effect on viral ecology, caused perhaps by low ecosystem productivity and low host densities relative to available water. Combined with a synthesis of avian diversity and abundance, intercontinental host movements, and genetic analyses, our results suggest that the risk and probably the frequency of intercontinental virus transfer in this region are relatively low.

  • Diagnosis of Tuberculosis by an Enzyme-Linked Immunospot Assay for Interferon-γ PDF Version [PDF - 194 KB - 6 pages]
    J. Wang et al.
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    We evaluated an enzyme-linked immunospot assay for interferon-γ (T SPOT-TB) for rapid diagnosis of active tuberculosis (TB) in a disease-endemic area. From January to June 2005, patients whose clinical symptoms and radiographic findings were compatible with TB were recruited, and a blood sample was obtained for T SPOT-TB assay within 7 days of microbiologic studies. Sixty-five patients were studied, including 39 (60%) with active TB. Thirty-five (53.8%) patients had underlying medical conditions. Thirty-seven patients had positive cultures for Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and 11 patients had positive cultures for nontuberculous mycobacteria. The sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of the T SPOT-TB assay were 87.2%, 88.5%, 91.9%, and 82.1%, respectively. The accuracy of this test in diagnosing active TB is >80%, even in an area with a high incidence of nontuberculous mycobacteria disease.

  • Global Emergence of Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole Resistance in Stenotrophomonas maltophilia Mediated by Acquisition of sul Genes PDF Version [PDF - 163 KB - 7 pages]
    M. A. Toleman et al.
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    Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (TMP/SMX) resistance remains a serious threat in the treatment of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia infections. We analyzed an international collection of 55 S. maltophilia TMP/SMX-sensitive (S) (n = 30) and -resistant (R) (n = 25) strains for integrons; sul1, sul2 and dhfr genes; and insertion element common region (ISCR) elements. sul1, as part of a class 1 integron, was detected in 17 of 25 TMP/SMX-R. Nine TMP/SMX-R strains carried sul2; 7 were on large plasmids. Five TMP/SMX-R isolates were positive for ISCR2, and 4 were linked to sul2; 2 others possessed ISCR3. Two ISCR2s were adjacent to floR. Six TMP/SMX-S isolates harbored novel ISCR elements, ISCR9 and ISCR10. Linkage of ISCR3, ISCR9, and ISCR10 to sul2 and dhfr genes was not demonstrated. The data from this study indicate that class 1 integrons and ISCR elements linked to sul2 genes can mediate TMP/SMX resistance in S. maltophilia and are geographically widespread, findings that reinforce the need for ongoing resistance surveillance.

  • Symptomatic and Subclinical Infection with Rotavirus P[8]G9, Rural Ecuador PDF Version [PDF - 323 KB - 7 pages]
    P. Endara et al.
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    During the past decade, rotavirus genotype G9 has spread throughout the world, adding to and sometimes supplanting the common genotypes G1–G4. We report evidence of this spread in a population sample within rural Ecuador. A total of 1,656 stool samples were collected from both patients with diarrhea and asymptomatic residents in 22 remote communities in northwestern Ecuador from August 2003 through February 2006. Rotavirus was detected in 23.4% of case-patients and 3.2% of controls. From these 136 rotavirus-positive samples, a subset of 47 were genotyped; 72% were of genotype G9, and 62% were genotype P[8]G9. As a comparison, 29 rotavirus-positive stool samples were collected from a hospital in Quito during March 2006 and genotyped; 86% were of genotype P[8]G9. Few countries have reported P[8]G9 rotavirus detection rates as high as those of the current study. This growing prevalence may require changes to current vaccination programs to include coverage for this genotype.

  • Spanish Influenza in Japanese Armed Forces, 1918–1920 PDF Version [PDF - 88 KB - 4 pages]
    A. Kawana et al.
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    With the recent outbreaks of avian influenza A (H5N1), the risk for the next influenza pandemic has increased. For effective countermeasures against the next pandemic, investigation of past pandemics is necessary. We selected cases diagnosed as influenza from medical records and hospitalization registries of Japanese army hospitals during 1918–1920, the Spanish influenza era, and investigated clinical features and circumstances of outbreaks. Admission lists showed a sudden increase in the number of inpatients with influenza in November 1918 and showed the effect of the first wave of this pandemic in Tokyo. The death rate was high (6%–8%) even though patients were otherwise healthy male adults.

  • Global Distribution of Panton-Valentine Leukocidin–positive Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, 2006 PDF Version [PDF - 128 KB - 7 pages]
    A. Tristan et al.
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    We determined the agr type, multilocus sequence type, protein A gene type (spa typing), toxin gene profile, and antimicrobial drug resistance profile of 469 isolates of Panton-Valentine leukocidin–positive community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus isolates (PVL-positive CA-MRSA). The isolates had been collected from around the world from 1999 through 2005 by the French National Reference Center for Staphylococci. We found that some continent-specific clones described in 2003, such as clone ST8, have now spread all over the world. Likewise, some PVL-positive CA-MRSA have spread to several countries on various continents. New clones have emerged (e.g., ST377) on new genetic backgrounds. PVL-positive CA-MRSA that were usually susceptible to most antistaphylococcal antimicrobial agents have acquired new resistance determinants (e.g., to gentamicin) in certain countries. The major trait shared by all these clones is a short staphylococcal chromosomal cassette mec element of type IV or V.

  • Flinders Island Spotted Fever Rickettsioses Caused by “marmionii” Strain of Rickettsia honei, Eastern Australia PDF Version [PDF - 251 KB - 8 pages]
    N. B. Unsworth et al.
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    We report 7 cases of rickettsiosis caused by a new rickettsial strain.

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    Australia has 4 rickettsial diseases: murine typhus, Queensland tick typhus, Flinders Island spotted fever, and scrub typhus. We describe 7 cases of a rickettsiosis, with an acute onset and symptoms of fever (100%), headache (71%), arthralgia (43%), myalgia (43%), cough (43%), maculopapular/petechial rash (43%), nausea (29%), pharyngitis (29%), lymphadenopathy (29%), and eschar (29%). Cases were most prevalent in autumn and from eastern Australia, including Queensland, Tasmania, and South Australia. One patient had a history of tick bite (Haemaphysalis novaeguineae). An isolate shared 99.2%, 99.8%, 99.8%, 99.9%, and 100% homology with the 17 kDa, ompA, gltA, 16S rRNA, and Sca4 genes, respectively, of Rickettsia honei. This Australian rickettsiosis has similar symptoms to Flinders Island spotted fever, and the strain is genetically related to R. honei. It has been designated the “marmionii” strain of R. honei, in honor of Australian physician and scientist Barrie Marmion.

  • Effectiveness of Interventions to Reduce Contact Rates during a Simulated Influenza Pandemic PDF Version [PDF - 255 KB - 9 pages]
    M. J. Haber et al.
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    Measures to decrease contact between persons during an influenza pandemic have been included in pandemic response plans. We used stochastic simulation models to explore the effects of school closings, voluntary confinements of ill persons and their household contacts, and reductions in contacts among long-term care facility (LTCF) residents on pandemic-related illness and deaths. Our findings suggest that school closings would not have a substantial effect on pandemic-related outcomes in the absence of measures to reduce out-of-school contacts. However, if persons with influenzalike symptoms and their household contacts were encouraged to stay home, then rates of illness and death might be reduced by ≈50%. By preventing ill LTCF residents from making contact with other residents, illness and deaths in this vulnerable population might be reduced by ≈60%. Restricting the activities of infected persons early in a pandemic could decrease negative health impact.


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