Abstract: Since their development over 60 years ago, antimicrobials have become an integral part of healthcare practice worldwide. Recently, this has been put in jeopardy by the emergence of widespread antimicrobial resistance, which is one of the major problems facing modern medicine. In the past, the development of new antimicrobials kept us one step ahead of the problem of resistance, but only three new classes of antimicrobials have reached the market in the last thirty years. A time is therefore approaching when we may not have effective treatment against bacterial infections, particularly for those that are caused by Gram-negative organisms.An important strategy to reduce the development of antimicrobial resistance is to use antimicrobials more appropriately, in ways that will prevent resistance. This involves a consideration of the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics properties of antimicrobials, the possible use of combinations, and more appropriate choice of antimicrobials, which may include rapid diagnostic testing and antimicrobial cycling. Examples given in this review include Mycobacterium tuberculosis, Gram-negative and Gram-positive organisms. We shall summarise the current evidence for these strategies and outline areas for future development.
Abstract: Tick-borne hemorrhagic fever viruses (TBHFV) are detected throughout the African and Eurasian continents and are an emerging or re-emerging threat to many nations. Due to the largely sporadic incidences of these severe diseases, information on human cases and research activities in general have been limited. In the past decade, however, novel TBHFVs have emerged and areas of endemicity have expanded. Therefore, the development of countermeasures is of utmost importance in combating TBHFV as elimination of vectors and interrupting enzootic cycles is all but impossible and ecologically questionable. As in vivo models are the only way to test efficacy and safety of countermeasures, understanding of the available animal models and the development and refinement of animal models is critical in negating the detrimental impact of TBHFVs on public and animal health.
Abstract: Burkholderia mallei, the etiologic agent of glanders, are Category B select agents with biothreat potential, and yet effective therapeutic treatments are lacking. In this study, we showed that CpG administration increased survival, demonstrating protection in the murine glanders model. Bacterial recovery from infected lungs, liver and spleen was significantly reduced in CpG-treated animals as compared with non-treated mice. Reciprocally, lungs of CpG-treated infected animals were infiltrated with higher levels of neutrophils and inflammatory monocytes, as compared to control animals. Employing the B. mallei bioluminescent strain CSM001 and the Neutrophil-Specific Fluorescent Imaging Agent, bacterial dissemination and neutrophil trafficking were monitored in real-time using multimodal in vivo whole body imaging techniques. CpG-treatment increased recruitment of neutrophils to the lungs and reduced bioluminescent bacteria, correlating with decreased bacterial burden and increased protection against acute murine glanders. Our results indicate that protection of CpG-treated animals was associated with recruitment of neutrophils prior to infection and demonstrated, for the first time, simultaneous real time in vivo imaging of neutrophils and bacteria.This study provides experimental evidence supporting the importance of incorporating optimized in vivo imaging methods to monitor disease progression and to evaluate the efficacy of therapeutic treatment during bacterial infections.
Abstract: Primary infection with varicella zoster virus (VZV) results in varicella (chickenpox) followed by the establishment of latency in sensory ganglia. Declining T cell immunity due to aging or immune suppressive treatments can lead to VZV reactivation and the development of herpes zoster (HZ, shingles). HZ is often associated with significant morbidity and occasionally mortality in elderly and immune compromised patients. There are currently two FDA-approved vaccines for the prevention of VZV: Varivax® (for varicella) and Zostavax® (for HZ). Both vaccines contain the live-attenuated Oka strain of VZV. Although highly immunogenic, a two-dose regimen is required to achieve a 99% seroconversion rate. Zostavax vaccination reduces the incidence of HZ by 51% within a 3-year period, but a significant reduction in vaccine-induced immunity is observed within the first year after vaccination. Developing more efficacious vaccines and therapeutics requires a better understanding of the host response to VZV. These studies have been hampered by the scarcity of animal models that recapitulate all aspects of VZV infections in humans. In this review, we describe different animal models of VZV infection as well as an alternative animal model that leverages the infection of Old World macaques with the highly related simian varicella virus (SVV) and discuss their contributions to our understanding of pathogenesis and immunity during VZV infection.
Abstract: Common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus) developed high levels of viremia, clinical signs including fever, weight loss, a decrease in activity and hematuria upon inoculation with dengue virus (DENV). Presence of DENV genome in urine samples and pathological changes in kidneys were examined in the present study. Levels of DENV genome were determined in 228 urine samples from 20 primary DENV-inoculated marmosets and in 56 urine samples from four secondary DENV-inoculated marmosets. DENV genome was detected in 75% (15/20) of marmosets after primary DENV infection. No DENV genome was detected in urine samples from the marmosets with secondary infection with homologous DENV (0%, 0/4). Two marmosets demonstrated hematuria. Pathological analysis of the kidneys demonstrated non-suppressive interstitial nephritis with renal tubular regeneration. DENV antigen-positive cells were detected in kidneys. In human dengue virus infections, some patients present renal symptoms. The results indicate that marmosets recapitulate some aspects of the involvement of kidneys in human DENV infection, and suggest that marmosets are potentially useful for the studies of the pathogenesis of DENV infection, including kidneys.
Abstract: The influence of microorganisms growing as sessile communities in a large number of human infections has been extensively studied and recognized for 30–40 years, therefore warranting intense scientific and medical research. Nonetheless, mimicking the biofilm-life style of bacteria and biofilm-related infections has been an arduous task. Models used to study biofilms range from simple in vitro to complex in vivo models of tissues or device-related infections. These different models have progressively contributed to the current knowledge of biofilm physiology within the host context. While far from a complete understanding of the multiple elements controlling the dynamic interactions between the host and biofilms, we are nowadays witnessing the emergence of promising preventive or curative strategies to fight biofilm-related infections. This review undertakes a comprehensive analysis of the literature from a historic perspective commenting on the contribution of the different models and discussing future venues and new approaches that can be merged with more traditional techniques in order to model biofilm-infections and efficiently fight them.