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Pathogens, Volume 10, Issue 3 (March 2021) – 131 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Infection with Leishmania infantum can lead to severe disease in humans and dogs, with the latter acting as a reservoir of the parasite. Based on a comprehensive search of scientific literature published from 2001 to 2020, this review provides an exhaustive list of vertebrates other than dogs and humans in which infections with or exposure to Leishmania have been detected in Europe. Most cases are from the Mediterranean region, but few species are confirmed to be infectious to vectors. Domestic animals, because of close contact with humans, pose a concern—cats in particular. Wildlife is less likely to contribute to zoonotic transmission, except for hares. This potentially large reservoir needs to be considered when developing control measures for zoonotic leishmaniosis. View this paper
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Article
WGS of Commensal Neisseria Reveals Acquisition of a New Ribosomal Protection Protein (MsrD) as a Possible Explanation for High Level Azithromycin Resistance in Belgium
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 384; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030384 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1027
Abstract
In this study, we characterized all oropharyngeal and anorectal isolates of Neisseria spp. in a cohort of men who have sex with men. This resulted in a panel of pathogenic Neisseria (N. gonorrhoeae [n = 5] and N. meningitidis [n = 5]) [...] Read more.
In this study, we characterized all oropharyngeal and anorectal isolates of Neisseria spp. in a cohort of men who have sex with men. This resulted in a panel of pathogenic Neisseria (N. gonorrhoeae [n = 5] and N. meningitidis [n = 5]) and nonpathogenic Neisseria (N. subflava [n = 11], N. mucosa [n = 3] and N. oralis [n = 2]). A high proportion of strains in this panel were resistant to azithromycin (18/26) and ceftriaxone (3/26). Whole genome sequencing (WGS) of these strains identified numerous mutations that are known to confer reduced susceptibility to azithromycin and ceftriaxone in N. gonorrhoeae. The presence or absence of these known mutations did not explain the high level resistance to azithromycin (>256 mg/L) in the nonpathogenic isolates (8/16). After screening for antimicrobial resistance (AMR) genes, we found a ribosomal protection protein, Msr(D), in these highly azithromycin resistant nonpathogenic strains. The complete integration site originated from Streptococcus pneumoniae and is associated with high level resistance to azithromycin in many other bacterial species. This novel AMR resistance mechanism to azithromycin in nonpathogenic Neisseria could be a public health concern if it were to be transmitted to pathogenic Neisseria. This study demonstrates the utility of WGS-based surveillance of nonpathogenic Neisseria. Full article
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Article
Molecular Detection and Identification of Chlamydiaceae in the Eyes of Wild and Domestic Ruminant Hosts from Northern Spain
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 383; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030383 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 767
Abstract
Infections by Chlamydiae are associated with ocular disease in humans and animals. In this study, the presence and diversity of Chlamydia spp. was assessed in diseased and healthy eyes of domestic sheep and wild ruminants that share mountain habitats in northern Spain. The [...] Read more.
Infections by Chlamydiae are associated with ocular disease in humans and animals. In this study, the presence and diversity of Chlamydia spp. was assessed in diseased and healthy eyes of domestic sheep and wild ruminants that share mountain habitats in northern Spain. The presence of Chlamydia spp. was tested by real-time PCR in 1786 conjunctival swabs collected from both eyes of 893 animals from mountain habitats in northern Spain, and chlamydial species were identified in the positive samples by ArrayTube microarray methods. Chlamydial DNA was detected in 0.6% (CI95% 0.2–1.3) of the Pyrenean chamois (Rupicapra pyrenaica) and 1.4% (CI95% <0.01–8.1) of the sheep (Ovis aries) sampled, with Chlamydia pecorum the only chlamydial species identified. No association of C. pecorum with ocular disease or co-infection with Mycoplasma conjunctivae was found. Further studies on the pathogenesis of infectious keratoconjunctivitis are needed to better understand the ecology of C. pecorum and its possible role as a ruminant pathogen at the wildlife–livestock interface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Chlamydiae: A Concern for Human and Veterinary Medicine)
Article
Antibiotics as a Stressing Factor Triggering the Harboring of Helicobacter pylori J99 within Candida albicans ATCC10231
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 382; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030382 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 777
Abstract
First-line treatment for Helicobacter pylori includes amoxicillin and clarithromycin or metronidazole plus a proton pump inhibitor. Treatment failure is associated with antibiotic resistance and possibly also with internalization of H. pylori into eukaryotic cells, such as yeasts. Factors triggering the entry of H. [...] Read more.
First-line treatment for Helicobacter pylori includes amoxicillin and clarithromycin or metronidazole plus a proton pump inhibitor. Treatment failure is associated with antibiotic resistance and possibly also with internalization of H. pylori into eukaryotic cells, such as yeasts. Factors triggering the entry of H. pylori into yeast are poorly understood. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate whether clarithromycin or amoxicillin trigger the entry of H. pylori into C. albicans cells. Methods: H. pylori J99 and C. albicans ATCC 10231 were co-cultured in the presence of subinhibitory concentrations of amoxicillin and clarithromycin as stressors. Bacterial-bearing yeasts were observed by fresh examination. The viability of bacteria within yeasts was evaluated, confirming the entry of bacteria into Candida, amplifying, by PCR, the H. pylori16S rRNA gene in total yeast DNA. Results: Amoxicillin significantly increased the entry of H. pylori into C. albicans compared to the control. Conclusion: the internalization of H. pylori into C. albicans in the presence of antibiotics is dependent on the type of antibiotic used, and it suggests that a therapy including amoxicillin may stimulate the entry of the bacterium into Candida, thus negatively affecting the success of the treatment. Full article
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Article
Amplicon Sequencing of Variable 16S rRNA from Bacteria and ITS2 Regions from Fungi and Plants, Reveals Honeybee Susceptibility to Diseases Results from Their Forage Availability under Anthropogenic Landscapes
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 381; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030381 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1859
Abstract
European Apis mellifera and Asian Apis cerana honeybees are essential crop pollinators. Microbiome studies can provide complex information on health and fitness of these insects in relation to environmental changes, and plant availability. Amplicon sequencing of variable regions of the 16S rRNA from [...] Read more.
European Apis mellifera and Asian Apis cerana honeybees are essential crop pollinators. Microbiome studies can provide complex information on health and fitness of these insects in relation to environmental changes, and plant availability. Amplicon sequencing of variable regions of the 16S rRNA from bacteria and the internally transcribed spacer (ITS) regions from fungi and plants allow identification of the metabiome. These methods provide a tool for monitoring otherwise uncultured microbes isolated from the gut of the honeybees. They also help monitor the composition of the gut fungi and, intriguingly, pollen collected by the insect. Here, we present data from amplicon sequencing of the 16S rRNA from bacteria and ITS2 regions from fungi and plants derived from honeybees collected at various time points from anthropogenic landscapes such as urban areas in Poland, UK, Spain, Greece, and Thailand. We have analysed microbial content of honeybee intestine as well as fungi and pollens. Furthermore, isolated DNA was used as the template for screening pathogens: Nosema apis, N. ceranae, N. bombi, tracheal mite (Acarapis woodi), any organism in the parasitic order Trypanosomatida, including Crithidia spp. (i.e., Crithidia mellificae), neogregarines including Mattesia and Apicystis spp. (i.e., Apicistis bombi). We conclude that differences between samples were mainly influenced by the bacteria, plant pollen and fungi, respectively. Moreover, honeybees feeding on a sugar based diet were more prone to fungal pathogens (Nosema ceranae) and neogregarines. In most samples Nosema sp. and neogregarines parasitized the host bee at the same time. A higher load of fungi, and bacteria groups such as Firmicutes (Lactobacillus); γ-proteobacteria, Neisseriaceae, and other unidentified bacteria was observed for Nosema ceranae and neogregarine infected honeybees. Healthy honeybees had a higher load of plant pollen, and bacteria groups such as: Orbales, Gilliamella, Snodgrassella, and Enterobacteriaceae. Finally, the period when honeybees switch to the winter generation (longer-lived forager honeybees) is the most sensitive to diet perturbations, and hence pathogen attack, for the whole beekeeping season. It is possible that evolutionary adaptation of bees fails to benefit them in the modern anthropomorphised environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Infection in Honey Bees: Host–Pathogen Interaction and Spillover)
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Opinion
Why Does SARS-CoV-2 Infection Induce Autoantibody Production?
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 380; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030380 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1052
Abstract
SARS-CoV-2 infection induces the production of autoantibodies, which is significantly associated with complications during hospitalization and a more severe prognosis in COVID-19 patients. Such a response of the patient’s immune system may reflect (1) the dysregulation of the immune response or (2) it [...] Read more.
SARS-CoV-2 infection induces the production of autoantibodies, which is significantly associated with complications during hospitalization and a more severe prognosis in COVID-19 patients. Such a response of the patient’s immune system may reflect (1) the dysregulation of the immune response or (2) it may be an attempt to regulate itself in situations where the non-infectious self poses a greater threat than the infectious non-self. Of significance may be the primary virus-host cell interaction where the surface-bound ACE2 ectoenzyme plays a critical role. Here, we present a brief analysis of recent findings concerning the immune recognition of SARS-CoV-2, which, we believe, favors the second possibility as the underlying reason for the production of autoantibodies during COVID-19. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection SARS-CoV Infections)
Review
The Impact of Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) Expression on the Incidence and Severity of COVID-19 Infection
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 379; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030379 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1444
Abstract
The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has led to an unprecedented threat to the international community and raised major concerns in terms of public health safety. Although our current understanding of the complexity of COVID-19 pathogenesis remains limited, the infection is largely [...] Read more.
The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has led to an unprecedented threat to the international community and raised major concerns in terms of public health safety. Although our current understanding of the complexity of COVID-19 pathogenesis remains limited, the infection is largely mediated by the interaction of viral spike protein and angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). The functional importance of ACE2 in different demographic and comorbid conditions may explain the significant variation in incidence and mortality of COVID-19 in vulnerable groups, and highlights its candidacy as a potential therapeutic target. We provide evidence supporting the idea that differences in incidence and severity of COVID-19 infection may be related to ACE2. Emerging data based on the prevalence and severity of COVID-19 among those with established high levels of ACE2 expression strongly support our hypothesis. Considering the burden of COVID-19 infection in these vulnerable groups and the impact of the potential therapeutic and preventive measures that would result from adopting ACE2-driven anti-viral strategies, our hypothesis may expedite global efforts to control the current COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Viral Pathogens)
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Article
Functional Autoreactive Anti-β2 Adrenergic Antibodies May Contribute to Insulin Resistance Profile in Patients with Chronic Chagas Disease
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 378; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030378 - 21 Mar 2021
Viewed by 948
Abstract
Potential activation of β2 adrenergic receptors (β2AR) by specific autoreactive antibodies (Abs) that arise during the host reaction to Trypanosoma cruzi, could contribute to the elevated prevalence of metabolic disturbances described in patients with chronic Chagas disease (CCD). This study aimed to [...] Read more.
Potential activation of β2 adrenergic receptors (β2AR) by specific autoreactive antibodies (Abs) that arise during the host reaction to Trypanosoma cruzi, could contribute to the elevated prevalence of metabolic disturbances described in patients with chronic Chagas disease (CCD). This study aimed to determine the prevalence of anti-β2AR Abs in patients with CCD, as well as the correlation of these Abs with the presence of glucose and lipid metabolism disturbances, in order to explore their association with an insulin resistance profile. Additionally, we tested the functional effects of anti-β2AR Abs employing an in vitro bioassay with neuroendocrine cells expressing β2AR. A clinical and metabolic evaluation including an OGTT was performed in 80 CCD patients and 40 controls. Anti-β2AR Abs were measured by an in-house-developed ELISA, and the β2 adrenergic activity of affinity-purified IgG fractions from patient’ sera were assayed in CRE-Luc and POMCLuc transfected AtT-20 cells. A higher proportion of dysglycemia (72.5% vs. 37.5%; p = 0.001) was observed in the CCD group, accompanied by increased HOMA2-IR (p = 0.019), especially in subjects with Abs (+). Anti-β2AR Abs reactivity (7.01 (2.39–20.5); p = 0.0004) and age >50 years (3.83 (1.30–11.25); p = 0.014) resulted as relevant for IR prediction (AUC: 0.786). Concordantly, Abs (+) CCD patients showed elevated metabolic risk scores and an increased prevalence of atherogenic dyslipidemia (p = 0.040), as compared to Abs (−) patients and controls. On functional bioassays, Abs exerted specific and dose-dependent β2-agonist effects. Our findings suggest that anti-β2AR Abs may induce the activation of β2AR in other tissues besides the heart; furthermore, we show that in patients with CCD these Abs are associated with an insulin resistance profile and atherogenic dyslipidemia, providing biological plausibility to the hypothesis that adrenergic activation by anti-β2AR Abs could contribute to the pathogenesis of metabolic disturbances described in CCD patients, increasing their cardiovascular risk. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Metabolic Dysfunction in Chagas Cardiomyopathy)
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Article
Enhancing the Protective Immune Response to Administration of a LIVP-GFP Live Attenuated Vaccinia Virus to Mice
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 377; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030377 - 21 Mar 2021
Viewed by 777
Abstract
Following the WHO announcement of smallpox eradication, discontinuation of smallpox vaccination with vaccinia virus (VACV) was recommended. However, interest in VACV was soon renewed due to the opportunity of genetic engineering of the viral genome by directed insertion of foreign genes or introduction [...] Read more.
Following the WHO announcement of smallpox eradication, discontinuation of smallpox vaccination with vaccinia virus (VACV) was recommended. However, interest in VACV was soon renewed due to the opportunity of genetic engineering of the viral genome by directed insertion of foreign genes or introduction of mutations or deletions into selected viral genes. This genomic technology enabled production of stable attenuated VACV strains producing antigens of various infectious agents. Due to an increasing threat of human orthopoxvirus re-emergence, the development of safe highly immunogenic live orthopoxvirus vaccines using genetic engineering methods has been the challenge in recent years. In this study, we investigated an attenuated VACV LIVP-GFP (TK-) strain having an insertion of the green fluorescent protein gene into the viral thymidine kinase gene, which was generated on the basis of the LIVP (Lister-Institute for Viral Preparations) strain used in Russia as the first generation smallpox vaccine. We studied the effect of A34R gene modification and A35R gene deletion on the immunogenic and protective properties of the LIVP-GFP strain. The obtained data demonstrate that intradermal inoculation of the studied viruses induces higher production of VACV-specific antibodies compared to their levels after intranasal administration. Introduction of two point mutations into the A34R gene, which increase the yield of extracellular enveloped virions, and deletion of the A35R gene, the protein product of which inhibits presentation of antigens by MHC II, enhances protective potency of the created LIVP-TK--A34R*-dA35R virus against secondary lethal orthopoxvirus infection of BALB/c mice even at an intradermal dose as low as 103 plaque forming units (PFU)/mouse. This virus may be considered not only as a candidate attenuated live vaccine against smallpox and other human orthopoxvirus infections but also as a vector platform for development of safe multivalent live vaccines against other infectious diseases using genetic engineering methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Poxviruses: Novel Concepts and Emerging Trends)
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Article
Host-Feeding Preference and Diel Activity of Mosquito Vectors of the Japanese Encephalitis Virus in Rural Cambodia
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 376; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030376 - 21 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1208
Abstract
Japanese Encephalitis (JE) is the most important cause of human encephalitis in Southeast Asia, and this zoonosis is mainly transmitted from pigs to human by mosquitoes. A better understanding of the host-feeding preference of Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) major vectors is crucial for [...] Read more.
Japanese Encephalitis (JE) is the most important cause of human encephalitis in Southeast Asia, and this zoonosis is mainly transmitted from pigs to human by mosquitoes. A better understanding of the host-feeding preference of Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) major vectors is crucial for identifying risk areas, defining bridge vector species and targeting adapted vector control strategies. To assess host-feeding preference of JE vectors in a rural Cambodian area where JE is known to circulate, in 2017, we implemented four sessions of mosquito trapping (March, June, September, December), during five consecutive nights, collecting four times a night (6 p.m. to 6 a.m.), and using five baited traps simultaneously, i.e., cow, chicken, pig, human, and a blank one for control. In addition, blood meals of 157 engorged females trapped at the same location were opportunistically analyzed with polymerase chain reaction (PCR), using cow, pig, human, and dog blood primers. More than 95% of the 36,709 trapped mosquitoes were potential JE vectors. These vectors were trapped in large numbers throughout the year, including during the dry season, and from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. Despite the apparent host-feeding preference of Culex vishnui, Cx. gelidus, and Cx. tritaenhyorhincus for cows, statistical analysis suggested that the primary target of these three mosquito species were pigs. Dog blood was detected in eight mosquitoes of the 157 tested, showing that mosquitoes also bite dogs, and suggesting that dogs may be used as proxy of the risk for human to get infected by JE virus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Japanese Encephalitis and Rift Valley Fever)
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Review
Rabies in Our Neighbourhood: Preparedness for an Emerging Infectious Disease
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 375; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030375 - 20 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1598
Abstract
Emerging infectious disease (EID) events have the potential to cause devastating impacts on human, animal and environmental health. A range of tools exist which can be applied to address EID event detection, preparedness and response. Here we use a case study of rabies [...] Read more.
Emerging infectious disease (EID) events have the potential to cause devastating impacts on human, animal and environmental health. A range of tools exist which can be applied to address EID event detection, preparedness and response. Here we use a case study of rabies in Southeast Asia and Oceania to illustrate, via nearly a decade of research activities, how such tools can be systematically integrated into a framework for EID preparedness. During the past three decades, canine rabies has spread to previously free areas of Southeast Asia, threatening the rabies-free status of countries such as Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea and Australia. The program of research to address rabies preparedness in the Oceanic region has included scanning and surveillance to define the emerging nature of canine rabies within the Southeast Asia region; field studies to collect information on potential reservoir species, their distribution and behaviour; participatory and sociological studies to identify priorities for disease response; and targeted risk assessment and disease modelling studies. Lessons learnt include the need to develop methods to collect data in remote regions, and the need to continuously evaluate and update requirements for preparedness in response to evolving drivers of emerging infectious disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epidemiology, Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases)
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Article
Prediction of Selected Biosynthetic Pathways for the Lipopolysaccharide Components in Porphyromonas gingivalis
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 374; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030374 - 20 Mar 2021
Viewed by 847
Abstract
Porphyromonas gingivalis is an oral human pathogen. The bacterium destroys dental tissue and is a serious health problem worldwide. Experimental data and bioinformatic analysis revealed that the pathogen produces three types of lipopolysaccharides (LPS): normal (O-type), anionic (A-type), and capsular (K-type). The enzymes [...] Read more.
Porphyromonas gingivalis is an oral human pathogen. The bacterium destroys dental tissue and is a serious health problem worldwide. Experimental data and bioinformatic analysis revealed that the pathogen produces three types of lipopolysaccharides (LPS): normal (O-type), anionic (A-type), and capsular (K-type). The enzymes involved in the production of all three types of lipopolysaccharide have been largely identified for the first two and partially for the third type. In the current work, we use bioinformatics tools to predict biosynthetic pathways for the production of the normal (O-type) lipopolysaccharide in the W50 strain Porphyromonas gingivalis and compare the pathway with other putative pathways in fully sequenced and completed genomes of other pathogenic strains. Selected enzymes from the pathway have been modeled and putative structures are presented. The pathway for the A-type antigen could not be predicted at this time due to two mutually exclusive structures proposed in the literature. The pathway for K-type antigen biosynthesis could not be predicted either due to the lack of structural data for the antigen. However, pathways for the synthesis of lipid A, its core components, and the O-type antigen ligase reaction have been proposed based on a combination of experimental data and bioinformatic analyses. The predicted pathways are compared with known pathways in other systems and discussed. It is the first report in the literature showing, in detail, predicted pathways for the synthesis of selected LPS components for the model W50 strain of P. gingivalis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection New Insights into Bacterial Pathogenesis)
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Review
Acinetobacter baumannii Antibiotic Resistance Mechanisms
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 373; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030373 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 41 | Viewed by 6061
Abstract
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative ESKAPE microorganism that poses a threat to public health by causing severe and invasive (mostly nosocomial) infections linked with high mortality rates. During the last years, this pathogen displayed multidrug resistance (MDR), mainly due to extensive antibiotic abuse [...] Read more.
Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative ESKAPE microorganism that poses a threat to public health by causing severe and invasive (mostly nosocomial) infections linked with high mortality rates. During the last years, this pathogen displayed multidrug resistance (MDR), mainly due to extensive antibiotic abuse and poor stewardship. MDR isolates are associated with medical history of long hospitalization stays, presence of catheters, and mechanical ventilation, while immunocompromised and severely ill hosts predispose to invasive infections. Next-generation sequencing techniques have revolutionized diagnosis of severe A. baumannii infections, contributing to timely diagnosis and personalized therapeutic regimens according to the identification of the respective resistance genes. The aim of this review is to describe in detail all current knowledge on the genetic background of A. baumannii resistance mechanisms in humans as regards beta-lactams (penicillins, cephalosporins, carbapenems, monobactams, and beta-lactamase inhibitors), aminoglycosides, tetracyclines, fluoroquinolones, macrolides, lincosamides, streptogramin antibiotics, polymyxins, and others (amphenicols, oxazolidinones, rifamycins, fosfomycin, diaminopyrimidines, sulfonamides, glycopeptide, and lipopeptide antibiotics). Mechanisms of antimicrobial resistance refer mainly to regulation of antibiotic transportation through bacterial membranes, alteration of the antibiotic target site, and enzymatic modifications resulting in antibiotic neutralization. Virulence factors that may affect antibiotic susceptibility profiles and confer drug resistance are also being discussed. Reports from cases of A. baumannii coinfection with SARS-CoV-2 during the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of resistance profiles and MDR genes have been investigated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Status of Acinetobacter Infections)
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Article
Detection of Lotmaria passim, Crithidia mellificae and Replicative Forms of Deformed Wing Virus and Kashmir Bee Virus in the Small Hive Beetle (Aethina tumida)
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030372 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1309
Abstract
Knowledge regarding the honey bee pathogens borne by invasive bee pests remains scarce. This investigation aimed to assess the presence in Aethina tumida (small hive beetle, SHB) adults of honey bee pathogens belonging to the following groups: (i) bacteria (Paenibacillus larvae and [...] Read more.
Knowledge regarding the honey bee pathogens borne by invasive bee pests remains scarce. This investigation aimed to assess the presence in Aethina tumida (small hive beetle, SHB) adults of honey bee pathogens belonging to the following groups: (i) bacteria (Paenibacillus larvae and Melissococcus plutonius), (ii) trypanosomatids (Lotmaria passim and Crithidia mellificae), and (iii) viruses (black queen cell virus, Kashmir bee virus, deformed wing virus, slow paralysis virus, sacbrood virus, Israeli acute paralysis virus, acute bee paralysis virus, chronic bee paralysis virus). Specimens were collected from free-flying colonies in Gainesville (Florida, USA) in summer 2017. The results of the molecular analysis show the presence of L. passim, C. mellificae, and replicative forms of deformed wing virus (DWV) and Kashmir bee virus (KBV). Replicative forms of KBV have not previously been reported. These results support the hypothesis of pathogen spillover between managed honey bees and the SHB, and these dynamics require further investigation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Infection in Honey Bees: Host–Pathogen Interaction and Spillover)
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Article
Mutations in Animal SARS-CoV-2 Induce Mismatches with the Diagnostic PCR Assays
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 371; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030371 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1403
Abstract
Recently, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detected in several animal species. After transmission to animals, the virus accumulates mutations in its genome as adaptation to the new animal host progresses. Therefore, we investigated whether these mutations result in mismatches with [...] Read more.
Recently, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detected in several animal species. After transmission to animals, the virus accumulates mutations in its genome as adaptation to the new animal host progresses. Therefore, we investigated whether these mutations result in mismatches with the diagnostic PCR assays and suggested proper modifications to the oligo sequences accordingly. A comprehensive bioinformatic analysis was conducted using 28 diagnostic PCR assays and 793 publicly available SARS-CoV-2 genomes isolated from animals. Sixteen out of the investigated 28 PCR assays displayed at least one mismatch with their targets at the 0.5% threshold. Mismatches were detected in seven, two, two, and six assays targeting the ORF1ab, spike, envelope, and nucleocapsid genes, respectively. Several of these mismatches, such as the deletions and mismatches at the 3’ end of the primer or probe, are expected to negatively affect the diagnostic PCR assays resulting in false-negative results. The modifications to the oligo sequences should result in stronger template binding by the oligos, better sensitivity of the assays, and higher confidence in the result. It is necessary to monitor the targets of diagnostic PCR assays for any future mutations that may occur as the virus continues to evolve in animals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Emerging Pathogens)
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Review
Modulation of Hemostasis in COVID-19; Blood Platelets May Be Important Pieces in the COVID-19 Puzzle
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 370; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030370 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1178
Abstract
Although the precise pathogenesis of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) currently remains unknown, its complex nature is gradually being revealed. COVID-19 is a disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus and leads to respiratory dysfunction. Studies on hemostatic parameters have showed that COVID-19 significantly affects [...] Read more.
Although the precise pathogenesis of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) currently remains unknown, its complex nature is gradually being revealed. COVID-19 is a disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus and leads to respiratory dysfunction. Studies on hemostatic parameters have showed that COVID-19 significantly affects the disruption of the coagulation system and may contribute to coagulation and thrombotic events. A relevant cause of hemostasis disorders is inflammation and cytokine storms, which cause, for example, endothelial dysfunction in blood vessels. In order to prevent and treat states of hypercoagulability and thrombosis, the administration of anticoagulants, e.g., heparin, is recommended. The present mini-review describes the relationship between hemostasis and COVID-19, and discusses whether this relationship may cast light on the nature of COVID-19. The present short manuscript also examines the relationship between blood platelets and COVID-19. In addition, the paper explores the potential use of antiplatelet drugs in COVID-19 cases. The studies were identified by searching electronic databases, including PubMed and SCOPUS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Viral Pathogens)
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Article
New Cladosporium Species from Normal and Galled Flowers of Lamiaceae
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 369; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030369 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1265
Abstract
A series of isolates of Cladosporium spp. were recovered in the course of a cooperative study on galls formed by midges of the genus Asphondylia (Diptera, Cecidomyidae) on several species of Lamiaceae. The finding of these fungi in both normal and galled flowers [...] Read more.
A series of isolates of Cladosporium spp. were recovered in the course of a cooperative study on galls formed by midges of the genus Asphondylia (Diptera, Cecidomyidae) on several species of Lamiaceae. The finding of these fungi in both normal and galled flowers was taken as an indication that they do not have a definite relationship with the midges. Moreover, identification based on DNA sequencing showed that these isolates are taxonomically heterogeneous and belong to several species which are classified in two different species complexes. Two new species, Cladosporium polonicum and Cladosporium neapolitanum, were characterized within the Cladosporium cladosporioides species complex based on strains from Poland and Italy, respectively. Evidence concerning the possible existence of additional taxa within the collective species C. cladosporioides and C. pseudocladosporioides is discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Fungal Pathogens)
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Article
Impact of Individual Viral Gene Segments from Influenza A/H5N8 Virus on the Protective Efficacy of Inactivated Subtype-Specific Influenza Vaccine
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 368; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030368 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1005
Abstract
Since its emergence in 2014, the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N8 virus has continuously and rapidly spread worldwide in the poultry sector resulting in huge economic losses. A typical inactivated H5N8 vaccine is prepared using the six internal genes from A/PR8/1934 (H1N1) and [...] Read more.
Since its emergence in 2014, the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N8 virus has continuously and rapidly spread worldwide in the poultry sector resulting in huge economic losses. A typical inactivated H5N8 vaccine is prepared using the six internal genes from A/PR8/1934 (H1N1) and the two major antigenic proteins (HA and NA) from the circulating H5N8 strain with the HA modified to a low pathogenic form (PR8HA/NA-H5N8). The contribution of the other internal proteins from H5N8, either individually or in combination, to the overall protective efficacy of PR8-based H5N8 vaccine has not been investigated. Using reverse genetics, a set of PR8-based vaccines expressing the individual proteins from an H5N8 strain were rescued and compared to the parent PR8 and low pathogenic H5N8 strains and the commonly used PR8HA/NA-H5N8. Except for the PR8-based vaccine strains expressing the HA of H5N8, none of the rescued combinations could efficiently elicit virus-neutralizing antibodies. Compared to PR8, the non-HA viral proteins provided some protection to infected chickens six days post infection. We assume that this late protection was related to cell-based immunity rather than antibody-mediated immunity. This may explain the slight advantage of using full low pathogenic H5N8 instead of PR8HA/NA-H5N8 to improve protection by both the innate and the humoral arms of the immune system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Viral Pathogens)
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Article
Isolation and Description of Catonella massiliensis sp. nov., a Novel Catonella Species, Isolated from a Stable Periodontitis Subject
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030367 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 799
Abstract
The genus Catonella currently counts a unique species, C. morbi, isolated from periodontal pockets and associated with periodontitis and endodontic infections. This study contributed to the taxonomical and clinical knowledge of this genus by describing a novel species isolated from a saliva [...] Read more.
The genus Catonella currently counts a unique species, C. morbi, isolated from periodontal pockets and associated with periodontitis and endodontic infections. This study contributed to the taxonomical and clinical knowledge of this genus by describing a novel species isolated from a saliva sample from a man in clinical gingival health following successful treatment of periodontitis. Morphological and chemotaxonomic characteristics were investigated using different growth conditions, pH, and temperature. Cellular fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis was conducted by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA, orthologous average nucleotide identity (OrthoANI), and digital DNA-DNA hybridization (dDDH) relatedness were performed. Strain Marseille-Q4567T was found to be an anaerobic and non-spore-forming rod-shaped bacterium that grew at 28–41.5 °C (optimum 37 °C), pH 6.5–8.5 (optimum pH 7.5), and 5–10 g/L of NaCl (optimum 5 g/L). The predominant cellular fatty acid was C16:0 (64.2%), followed by unsaturated structures C18:1n9 (12.5%) and C18:2n6 (7.8%). Based on 16S rRNA sequence comparison, the closest phylogenetic neighbor was C. morbi ATCC 51271T (98.23% similarity). The OrthoANI and dDDH values between strain Q4567T and C. morbi ATCC 51271T were respectively 79.43% and 23.8%. Therefore, we concluded that strain Marseille-Q4567T represents a novel species of the genus Catonella, for which the name Catonella massiliensis sp. nov. is proposed (= CSUR Q4567). Full article
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Article
Differentiation of Gastric Helicobacter Species Using MALDI-TOF Mass Spectrometry
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 366; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030366 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1220
Abstract
Gastric helicobacters (Helicobacter (H.) pylori and non-H. pylori Helicobacter species (NHPHs)) colonize the stomach of humans and/or animals. Helicobacter species identification is essential since many of them are recognized as human and/or animal pathogens. Currently, Helicobacter species can only [...] Read more.
Gastric helicobacters (Helicobacter (H.) pylori and non-H. pylori Helicobacter species (NHPHs)) colonize the stomach of humans and/or animals. Helicobacter species identification is essential since many of them are recognized as human and/or animal pathogens. Currently, Helicobacter species can only be differentiated using molecular methods. Differentiation between NHPHs using MALDI-TOF MS has not been described before, probably because these species are poorly represented in current MALDI-TOF MS databases. Therefore, we identified 93 gastric Helicobacter isolates of 10 different Helicobacter species using MALDI-TOF MS in order to establish a more elaborate Helicobacter reference database. While the MALDI Biotyper database was not able to correctly identify any of the isolates, the in-house database correctly identified all individual mass spectra and resulted in 82% correct species identification based on the two highest log score matches (with log scores ≥2). In addition, a dendrogram was constructed using all newly created main spectrum profiles. Nine main clusters were formed, with some phylogenetically closely related Helicobacter species clustering closely together and well-defined subclusters being observed in specific species. Current results suggest that MALDI-TOF MS allows rapid differentiation between gastric Helicobacter species, provided that an extensive database is at hand and variation due to growth conditions and agar-medium-related peaks are taken into account. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Bacterial Pathogens)
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Article
Development of a Colloidal Gold Immunochromatographic Assay for Duck Enteritis Virus Detection Using Monoclonal Antibodies
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030365 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 800
Abstract
Duck viral enteritis is a highly contagious and fatal disease of commercial waterfowl flocks. The disease occurs sporadically or epizootically in mainland China due to insufficient vaccinations. Early and rapid diagnosis is important for preventive intervention and the control of epizootic events in [...] Read more.
Duck viral enteritis is a highly contagious and fatal disease of commercial waterfowl flocks. The disease occurs sporadically or epizootically in mainland China due to insufficient vaccinations. Early and rapid diagnosis is important for preventive intervention and the control of epizootic events in clinical settings. In this study, we generated two monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) that specifically recognized the duck enteritis virus (DEV) envelope glycoprotein B and tegument protein UL47, respectively. Using these MAbs, a colloidal gold-based immunochromatographic assay (ICA) was developed for the efficient detection of DEV antigens within 15 min. Our results showed that the detection limit of the developed ICA strip was 2.52 × 103 TCID50/mL for the virus infected cell culture suspension with no cross-reactivity with other pathogenic viruses commonly encountered in commercially raised waterfowl. Using samples from experimentally infected ducks, we demonstrated that the ICA detected the virus in cloacal swab samples on day three post-infection, demonstrating an 80% concordance with the PCR. For tissue homogenates from ducks succumbing to infection, the detection sensitivity was 100%. The efficient and specific detection by this ICA test provides a valuable, convenient, easy to use and rapid diagnostic tool for DVE under both laboratory and field conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Viral Pathogens)
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Article
Proteomic Analysis of Mycelial Exudates of Ustilaginoidea virens
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030364 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 860
Abstract
Rice false smut (RFS) disease, which is caused by Ustilaginoidea virens, has been widespread all over the world in recent years, causing irreversible losses. Under artificial culture conditions, exudates will appear on colonies of U. virens during the growth of the hyphae. [...] Read more.
Rice false smut (RFS) disease, which is caused by Ustilaginoidea virens, has been widespread all over the world in recent years, causing irreversible losses. Under artificial culture conditions, exudates will appear on colonies of U. virens during the growth of the hyphae. Exudation of droplets is a common feature in many fungi, but the functions of exudates are undetermined. As the executors of life functions, proteins can intuitively reflect the functions of exudates. Shotgun proteomics were used in this study. A total of 650 proteins were identified in the exudate of U. virens, and the raw data were made available via ProteomeXchange with the identifier PXD019861. There were 57 subcategories and 167 pathways annotated with Gene Ontology (GO) classification and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway analysis, respectively. Through protein–protein interaction (PPI) network analysis, it was found that 20 proteins participated in the biosynthesis of secondary metabolites. Two separate PPI analyses were performed for carbon metabolism and microbial metabolism in diverse environments. After comparing and annotating the functions of proteins of the exudate, it was speculated that the exudate was involved in the construction and remodeling of the fungal cell wall. Pathogenicity, sporulation, and antioxidant effects might all be affected by the exudate. Full article
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Article
Genomic Analyses of Globodera pallida, A Quarantine Agricultural Pathogen in Idaho
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 363; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030363 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 775
Abstract
Globodera pallida is among the most significant plant-parasitic nematodes worldwide, causing major damage to potato production. Since it was discovered in Idaho in 2006, eradication efforts have aimed to contain and eradicate G. pallida through phytosanitary action and soil fumigation. In this study, [...] Read more.
Globodera pallida is among the most significant plant-parasitic nematodes worldwide, causing major damage to potato production. Since it was discovered in Idaho in 2006, eradication efforts have aimed to contain and eradicate G. pallida through phytosanitary action and soil fumigation. In this study, we investigated genome-wide patterns of G. pallida genetic variation across Idaho fields to evaluate whether the infestation resulted from a single or multiple introduction(s) and to investigate potential evolutionary responses since the time of infestation. A total of 53 G. pallida samples (~1,042,000 individuals) were collected and analyzed, representing five different fields in Idaho, a greenhouse population, and a field in Scotland that was used for external comparison. According to genome-wide allele frequency and fixation index (Fst) analyses, most of the genetic variation was shared among the G. pallida populations in Idaho fields pre-fumigation, indicating that the infestation likely resulted from a single introduction. Temporal patterns of genome-wide polymorphisms involving (1) pre-fumigation field samples collected in 2007 and 2014 and (2) pre- and post-fumigation samples revealed nucleotide variants (SNPs, single-nucleotide polymorphisms) with significantly differentiated allele frequencies indicating genetic differentiation. This study provides insights into the genetic origins and adaptive potential of G. pallida invading new environments. Full article
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Article
High-Throughput Microfluidic Real-Time PCR for the Detection of Multiple Microorganisms in Ixodid Cattle Ticks in Northeast Algeria
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030362 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 890
Abstract
Ixodid ticks are hematophagous arthropods considered to be prominent ectoparasite vectors that have a negative impact on cattle, either through direct injury or via the transmission of several pathogens. In this study, we investigated the molecular infection rates of numerous tick-borne pathogens in [...] Read more.
Ixodid ticks are hematophagous arthropods considered to be prominent ectoparasite vectors that have a negative impact on cattle, either through direct injury or via the transmission of several pathogens. In this study, we investigated the molecular infection rates of numerous tick-borne pathogens in ticks sampled on cattle from the Kabylia region, northeastern Algeria, using a high-throughput microfluidic real-time PCR system. A total of 235 ticks belonging to seven species of the genera Rhipicephalus, Hyalomma, and Ixodes were sampled on cattle and then screened for the presence of 36 different species of bacteria and protozoans. The most prevalent tick-borne microorganisms were Rickettsia spp. at 79.1%, followed by Francisella-like endosymbionts (62.9%), Theileria spp. (17.8%), Anaplasma spp. (14.4%), Bartonella spp. (6.8%), Borrelia spp. (6.8%), and Babesia spp. (2.5%). Among the 80.4% of ticks bearing microorganisms, 20%, 36.6%, 21.7%, and 2.1% were positive for one, two, three, and four different microorganisms, respectively. Rickettsia aeschlimannii was detected in Hyalomma marginatum, Hyalomma detritum, and Rhipicephalus bursa ticks. Rickettsia massiliae was found in Rhipicephalus sanguineus, and Rickettsiamonacensis and Rickettsia helvetica were detected in Ixodesricinus. Anaplasma marginale was found in all identified tick genera, but Anaplasma centrale was detected exclusively in Rhipicephalus spp. ticks. The DNA of Borrelia spp. and Bartonella spp. was identified in several tick species. Theileria orientalis was found in R. bursa, R. sanguineus, H. detritum, H. marginatum, and I. ricinus and Babesia bigemina was found in Rhipicephalus annulatus and R. sanguineus. Our study highlights the importance of tick-borne pathogens in cattle in Algeria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Regional Impact of Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases)
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Article
An Epidemiological Survey Regarding Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases among Livestock Owners in Punjab, Pakistan: A One Health Context
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 361; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030361 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1859
Abstract
Recent global changes have led to an increase in the spread of ticks and tick-borne diseases (TBDs) affecting domestic ruminants and humans, with an annual loss of US $13.9–$18.7 billion. The current study determined the perception and practices of livestock farmers regarding tick [...] Read more.
Recent global changes have led to an increase in the spread of ticks and tick-borne diseases (TBDs) affecting domestic ruminants and humans, with an annual loss of US $13.9–$18.7 billion. The current study determined the perception and practices of livestock farmers regarding tick infestation. A total of 112 livestock farms were surveyed in Punjab, Pakistan, among which animals from 42 (37.5%) farms were infested with ticks. Only 28.6% (n = 32) of the dairy farmers were consulting veterinarians for ticks control, while 86.7% (n = 97) of the respondents did not consider biosecurity measures in the control of tick transmission. Most of the respondents, 71.4% (n = 80), did not consider manual tick removal from their animals (i.e., by hand, followed by physically crushing) as a risky practice for spreading zoonotic diseases. Improper disposal of bottles of acaricides in the farm drainage was also observed, putting the environment and aquatic life at risk. These wrong practices may contribute to high disease burdens and economic losses, increasing the possibility of transmission of zoonotic TBDs and pollution of the environment. Therefore, an integrated One Health approach is required for the control of TBDs through environmentally friendly approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Vectors and Vector-Borne Diseases: A One Health Perspective)
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Article
Re-Introduction of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus in a Disease-Free Region: Impact on the Affected Cattle Herd and Diagnostic Implications
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 360; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030360 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1033
Abstract
Bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) is one of the most important infectious cattle diseases worldwide. The major source of virus transmission is immunotolerant, persistently infected (PI) calves, which makes them the key target of control programs. In the German federal state of Saxony-Anhalt, a [...] Read more.
Bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) is one of the most important infectious cattle diseases worldwide. The major source of virus transmission is immunotolerant, persistently infected (PI) calves, which makes them the key target of control programs. In the German federal state of Saxony-Anhalt, a very low prevalence was achieved, with more than 99.8% of the cattle herds being free from PI animals since the year 2013. In 2017, BVD virus was detected in a previously disease-free holding (herd size of ~380 cows, their offspring, and fattening bulls). The purchase of two so-called Trojan cows, i.e., dams pregnant with a PI calf, was identified as the source of infection. The births of the PI animals resulted in transient infections of in-contact dams, accompanied by vertical virus transmission to their fetuses within the critical timeframe for the induction of PI calves. Forty-eight days after the birth of the first PI calf, all animals in close contact with the Trojan cows during their parturition period were blood-sampled and serologically examined by a neutralization test and several commercial ELISAs. The resulting seroprevalence strongly depended on the applied test system. The outbreak could be stopped by the immediate elimination of every newborn PI calf and vaccination, and since 2018, no BVD cases have occurred. Full article
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Article
Potential Parasitic Causes of Epilepsy in an Onchocerciasis Endemic Area in the Ituri Province, Democratic Republic of Congo
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030359 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 768
Abstract
A high burden of epilepsy is observed in Africa where parasitological infections are endemic. In 2016, in an Onchocerciasis endemic area in the Logo health zone, in Ituri province in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a door-to-door study showed an epilepsy prevalence of [...] Read more.
A high burden of epilepsy is observed in Africa where parasitological infections are endemic. In 2016, in an Onchocerciasis endemic area in the Logo health zone, in Ituri province in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a door-to-door study showed an epilepsy prevalence of 4.6%, and 50.6% of persons with epilepsy were infected with Onchocerca volvulus. In the current study, the serum of 195 people infected with O. volvulus persons with epilepsy were tested to determine the proportion of co-infections with Taenia solium, Toxocara canis and Strongyloides. These proportions were, respectively, 8.2, 18.5 and 12.8%. Persons with a T. solium co-infection were older than those without co-infection (p = 0.021). In six (37.5%) of the T. solium co-infected persons, the first seizures appeared after the age of 30 years compared to three (2.1%) persons without a co-infection (p < 0.0001). Our study suggests that an O. volvulus infection is the main parasitic cause of epilepsy in the Ituri province, but in some persons, mainly in those with late onset epilepsy and with focal seizures, the epilepsy may be caused by neurocysticercosis. As the population in the area rears pigs, activities to limit T. solium transmission should be implemented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Onchocerciasis and River Epilepsy)
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Article
Genotype Diversity before and after the Introduction of a Rotavirus Vaccine into the National Immunisation Program in Fiji
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 358; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030358 - 17 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1176
Abstract
The introduction of the rotavirus vaccine, Rotarix, into the Fiji National Immunisation Program in 2012 has reduced the burden of rotavirus disease and hospitalisations in children less than 5 years of age. The aim of this study was to describe the pattern of [...] Read more.
The introduction of the rotavirus vaccine, Rotarix, into the Fiji National Immunisation Program in 2012 has reduced the burden of rotavirus disease and hospitalisations in children less than 5 years of age. The aim of this study was to describe the pattern of rotavirus genotype diversity from 2005 to 2018; to investigate changes following the introduction of the rotavirus vaccine in Fiji. Faecal samples from children less than 5 years with acute diarrhoea between 2005 to 2018 were analysed at the WHO Rotavirus Regional Reference Laboratory at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Melbourne, Australia, and positive samples were serotyped by EIA (2005–2006) or genotyped by heminested RT-PCR (2007 onwards). We observed a transient increase in the zoonotic strain equine-like G3P[8] in the initial period following vaccine introduction. G1P[8] and G2P[4], dominant genotypes prior to vaccine introduction, have not been detected since 2015 and 2014, respectively. A decrease in rotavirus genotypes G2P[8], G3P[6], G8P[8] and G9P[8] was also observed following vaccine introduction. Monitoring the rotavirus genotypes that cause diarrhoeal disease in children in Fiji is important to ensure that the rotavirus vaccine will continue to be protective and to enable early detection of new vaccine escape strains if this occurs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rotaviruses and Rotavirus Vaccines)
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Review
Ross River Virus Infection: A Cross-Disciplinary Review with a Veterinary Perspective
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 357; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030357 - 17 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1269
Abstract
Ross River virus (RRV) has recently been suggested to be a potential emerging infectious disease worldwide. RRV infection remains the most common human arboviral disease in Australia, with a yearly estimated economic cost of $4.3 billion. Infection in humans and horses can cause [...] Read more.
Ross River virus (RRV) has recently been suggested to be a potential emerging infectious disease worldwide. RRV infection remains the most common human arboviral disease in Australia, with a yearly estimated economic cost of $4.3 billion. Infection in humans and horses can cause chronic, long-term debilitating arthritogenic illnesses. However, current knowledge of immunopathogenesis remains to be elucidated and is mainly inferred from a murine model that only partially resembles clinical signs and pathology in human and horses. The epidemiology of RRV transmission is complex and multifactorial and is further complicated by climate change, making predictive models difficult to design. Establishing an equine model for RRV may allow better characterization of RRV disease pathogenesis and immunology in humans and horses, and could potentially be used for other infectious diseases. While there are no approved therapeutics or registered vaccines to treat or prevent RRV infection, clinical trials of various potential drugs and vaccines are currently underway. In the future, the RRV disease dynamic is likely to shift into temperate areas of Australia with longer active months of infection. Here, we (1) review the current knowledge of RRV infection, epidemiology, diagnostics, and therapeutics in both humans and horses; (2) identify and discuss major research gaps that warrant further research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epidemiology, Surveillance and Control of Infectious Diseases)
Article
Publication Trends in Neglected Tropical Diseases of Latin America and the Caribbean: A Bibliometric Analysis
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 356; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030356 - 17 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1153
Abstract
(1) Background: Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) have been overlooked on the global health agenda and in the priorities of national systems in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). In 2012, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were created to ensure healthy lives and promoting well-being [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) have been overlooked on the global health agenda and in the priorities of national systems in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). In 2012, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were created to ensure healthy lives and promoting well-being for all. This roadmap set out to accelerate work to overcome the global impact of NTDs. Almost a decade has passed since NTDs were re-launched as a global priority. Investment in research and development, as well as the production of scientific literature on NTDs, is expected to have increased significantly. (2) Methods: A bibliometric analysis of the scientific production of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) was carried out in relation to 19 endemic NTDs. These data were compared with the scientific production in malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS. The database available from Thomson Reuters Web of Science (WoS) was used. In addition, the average annual growth percentage was calculated for each disease. (3) Results: In the last decade, the NTDs with the highest number of publications in the world were dengue and leishmaniasis. The United States was the most prolific country in the world in 15 out of 19 NTDs analyzed. In the LAC region, Brazil was the largest contributor for 16 of the 19 NTDs analyzed. Arboviral diseases showed the highest average annual growth. The number of publications for malaria, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS was considerably higher than for NTDs. The contribution of most LAC countries, especially those considered to be LMICs, is inadequate and does not reflect the relevance of NTDs for the public health of the population. (4) Conclusions: This is the first bibliometric analysis to assess the trend of scientific documents on endemic NTDs in LAC. Our results could be used by decision makers both to strengthen investment policies in research and development in NTDs. Full article
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Review
Squalene-Based Influenza Vaccine Adjuvants and Their Impact on the Hemagglutinin-Specific B Cell Response
Pathogens 2021, 10(3), 355; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10030355 - 17 Mar 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1510
Abstract
Influenza infections continue to cause significant annual morbidity and mortality despite ongoing influenza vaccine research. Adjuvants are administered in conjunction with influenza vaccines to enhance the immune response and strengthen protection against disease. Squalene-based emulsion adjuvants including MF59, AS03, and AF03, are registered [...] Read more.
Influenza infections continue to cause significant annual morbidity and mortality despite ongoing influenza vaccine research. Adjuvants are administered in conjunction with influenza vaccines to enhance the immune response and strengthen protection against disease. Squalene-based emulsion adjuvants including MF59, AS03, and AF03, are registered for administration with influenza vaccines and are widely used in many countries. Squalene-based emulsion adjuvants induce a strong innate immune response, enhancing antigen presentation both quantitively and qualitatively to generate strong B cell responses and antibody production. They also diversify the reactivity profiles and strengthen the affinities of antibodies against the influenza hemagglutinin, increasing protection across virus clades. In this review, we consider the mechanisms of the enhancement of innate and adaptive immune responses by squalene-based emulsionSE adjuvants and the resulting increase in magnitude and breadth of hemagglutinin-specific B cell responses. We relate observed effects of SE adjuvants and current mechanistic understandings to events in responding lymph nodes. These insights will guide the rational design and optimization of influenza vaccines to provide broad and effective protection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advance in Influenza A Virus)
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