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Volume 14, Number 8—August 2008

Volume 14, Number 8—August 2008   PDF Version [PDF - 6.15 MB - 179 pages]


  • Bacterial Pneumonia and Pandemic Influenza Planning PDF Version [PDF - 195 KB - 5 pages]
    R. K. Gupta et al.
       View Abstract

    Pandemic influenza planning is well under way across the globe. Antiviral drugs and vaccines have dominated the therapeutic agenda. Far less work has been conducted on stockpiling and planning for deployment of antimicrobial drugs against secondary bacterial pneumonia, a cause of substantial illness and death in previous pandemics and epidemics. In the event of a pandemic, effective antimicrobial drug measures are expected to substantially benefit public health. We address issues regarding use of antimicrobial drugs as stocks of individual agents are diminished and the role of resistance surveillance in informing such policy. Furthermore, vaccination with polysaccharide and conjugate pneumococcal vaccines is considered as part of a pandemic strategy. Most illness and death from influenza are likely to occur in developing countries, where neuraminidase inhibitors and vaccines may be neither affordable nor available; thus, compared with industrialized countries, the benefits of treating bacterial complications in developing countries may be substantially greater.


  • Diverse Contexts of Zoonotic Transmission of Simian Foamy Viruses in Asia PDF Version [PDF - 559 KB - 9 pages]
    L. Jones-Engel et al.
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    In Asia, contact between persons and nonhuman primates is widespread in multiple occupational and nonoccupational contexts. Simian foamy viruses (SFVs) are retroviruses that are prevalent in all species of nonhuman primates. To determine SFV prevalence in humans, we tested 305 persons who lived or worked around nonhuman primates in several South and Southeast Asian countries; 8 (2.6%) were confirmed SFV positive by Western blot and, for some, by PCR. The interspecies interactions that likely resulted in virus transmission were diverse; 5 macaque taxa were implicated as a potential source of infection. Phylogenetic analysis showed that SFV from 3 infected persons was similar to that from the nonhuman primate populations with which the infected persons reported contact. Thus, SFV infections are likely to be prevalent among persons who live or work near nonhuman primates in Asia.

  • Puumala Hantavirus Excretion Kinetics in Bank Voles (Myodes glareolus) PDF Version [PDF - 329 KB - 7 pages]
    J. Hardestam et al.
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    Puumala hantavirus is present in bank voles (Myodes glareolus) and is believed to be spread mainly by contaminated excretions. In this study, we subcutaneously inoculated 10 bank voles with Puumala virus and sampled excretions until day 133 postinfection. Levels of shed viral RNA peaked within 11–28, 14–21, and 11–28 days postinfection for saliva, urine, and feces, respectively. The latest detection of viral RNA was 84, 44, and 44 days postinfection in saliva, urine, and feces, respectively. In contrast, blood of 5 of 6 animals contained viral RNA at day 133 postinfection, suggesting that bank voles secrete virus only during a limited time of the infection. Intranasal inoculations with bank vole saliva, urine, or feces were all infectious for virus-negative bank voles, indicating that these 3 transmission routes may occur in nature and that rodent saliva might play a role in transmission to humans.

  • Community Strains of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus as Potential Cause of Healthcare-associated Infections, Uruguay, 2002–2004 PDF Version [PDF - 271 KB - 8 pages]
    S. R. Benoit et al.
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    Community-associated MRSA (CA-MRSA) strains have emerged in Uruguay. We reviewed Staphylococcus aureus isolates from a large healthcare facility in Montevideo (center A) and obtained information from 3 additional hospitals on patients infected with CA-MRSA. An infection was defined as healthcare-onset if the culture was obtained >48 hours after hospital admission. At center A, the proportion of S. aureus infections caused by CA-MRSA increased from 4% to 23% over 2 years; the proportion caused by healthcare-associated MRSA (HA-MRSA) decreased from 25% to 5%. Of 182 patients infected with CA-MRSA, 38 (21%) had healthcare-onset infections. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis determined that 22 (92%) of 24 isolates were USA1100, a community strain. CA-MRSA has emerged in Uruguay and appears to have replaced HA-MRSA strains at 1 healthcare facility. In addition, CA-MRSA appears to cause healthcare-onset infections, a finding that emphasizes the need for infection control measures to prevent transmission within healthcare settings.

  • Medscape CME Activity
    Systematic Literature Review of Role of Noroviruses in Sporadic Gastroenteritis PDF Version [PDF - 219 KB - 8 pages]
    M. M. Patel et al.
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    Noroviruses accounted for 12% of severe gastroenteritis cases among children <5 years of age.

       View Abstract

    We conducted a systematic review of studies that used reverse transcription–PCR to diagnose norovirus (NoV) infections in patients with mild or moderate (outpatient) and severe (hospitalized) diarrhea. NoVs accounted for 12% (95% confidence interval [CI] 10%–15%) of severe gastroenteritis cases among children <5 years of age and 12% (95% CI 9%–15%) of mild and moderate diarrhea cases among persons of all ages. Of 19 studies among children <5 years of age, 7 were in developing countries where pooled prevalence of severe NoV disease (12%) was comparable to that for industrialized countries (12%). We estimate that each year NoVs cause 64,000 episodes of diarrhea requiring hospitalization and 900,000 clinic visits among children in industrialized countries, and up to 200,000 deaths of children <5 years of age in developing countries. Future efforts should focus on developing targeted strategies, possibly even vaccines, for preventing NoV disease and better documenting their impact among children living in developing countries, where >95% of the deaths from diarrhea occur.

  • Genetic and Serologic Properties of Zika Virus Associated with an Epidemic, Yap State, Micronesia, 2007 PDF Version [PDF - 198 KB - 8 pages]
    R. S. Lanciotti et al.
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    Zika virus (ZIKV) is a mosquito-borne flavivirus first isolated in Uganda from a sentinel monkey in 1947. Mosquito and sentinel animal surveillance studies have demonstrated that ZIKV is endemic to Africa and Southeast Asia, yet reported human cases are rare, with <10 cases reported in the literature. In June 2007, an epidemic of fever and rash associated with ZIKV was detected in Yap State, Federated States of Micronesia. We report the genetic and serologic properties of the ZIKV associated with this epidemic.

  • Interepidemic Rift Valley Fever Virus Seropositivity, Northeastern Kenya PDF Version [PDF - 187 KB - 7 pages]
    A. D. LaBeaud et al.
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    Most outbreaks of Rift Valley fever (RVF) occur in remote locations after floods. To determine environmental risk factors and long-term sequelae of human RVF, we examined rates of previous Rift Valley fever virus (RVFV) exposure by age and location during an interepidemic period in 2006. In a randomized household cluster survey in 2 areas of Ijara District, Kenya, we examined 248 residents of 2 sublocations, Gumarey (village) and Sogan-Godud (town). Overall, the RVFV seropositivity rate was 13% according to immunoglobulin G ELISA; evidence of interepidemic RVFV transmission was detected. Increased seropositivity was found among older persons, those who were male, those who lived in the rural village (Gumarey), and those who had disposed of animal abortus. Rural Gumarey reported more mosquito and animal exposure than Sogan-Godud. Seropositive persons were more likely to have visual impairment and retinal lesions; other physical findings did not differ.

  • Aquatic Invertebrates as Unlikely Vectors of Buruli Ulcer Disease PDF Version [PDF - 397 KB - 8 pages]
    M. E. Benbow et al.
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    Buruli ulcer is a necrotizing skin disease caused by Mycobacterium ulcerans and associated with exposure to aquatic habitats. To assess possible transmission of M. ulcerans by aquatic biting insects, we conducted a field examination of biting water bugs (Hemiptera: Naucoridae, Belostomatidae, Nepidae) in 15 disease-endemic and 12 non–disease-endemic areas of Ghana, Africa. From collections of 22,832 invertebrates, we compared composition, abundance, and associated M. ulcerans positivity among sites. Biting hemipterans were rare and represented a small percentage (usually <2%) of invertebrate communities. No significant differences were found in hemipteran abundance or pathogen positivity between disease-endemic and non–disease-endemic sites, and between abundance of biting hemipterans and M. ulcerans positivity. Therefore, although infection through insect bites is possible, little field evidence supports the assumption that biting hemipterans are primary vectors of M. ulcerans.

Historical Review

  • Deaths from Bacterial Pneumonia during 1918–19 Influenza Pandemic PDF Version [PDF - 138 KB - 7 pages]
    J. F. Brundage and G. Shanks
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    Deaths during the 1918–19 influenza pandemic have been attributed to a hypervirulent influenza strain. Hence, preparations for the next pandemic focus almost exclusively on vaccine prevention and antiviral treatment for infections with a novel influenza strain. However, we hypothesize that infections with the pandemic strain generally caused self-limited (rarely fatal) illnesses that enabled colonizing strains of bacteria to produce highly lethal pneumonias. This sequential-infection hypothesis is consistent with characteristics of the 1918–19 pandemic, contemporaneous expert opinion, and current knowledge regarding the pathophysiologic effects of influenza viruses and their interactions with respiratory bacteria. This hypothesis suggests opportunities for prevention and treatment during the next pandemic (e.g., with bacterial vaccines and antimicrobial drugs), particularly if a pandemic strain–specific vaccine is unavailable or inaccessible to isolated, crowded, or medically underserved populations.



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