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Pathogens, Volume 9, Issue 6 (June 2020) – 102 articles

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Cover Story (view full-size image) In this paper, we ask whether host species impose a strong structural effect on the gut microbiota [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle
Changes in miR-122 and Cholesterol Expression in Chronic Hepatitis C Patients after PegIFN-Alpha/Ribavirin Treatment
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 514; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060514 - 25 Jun 2020
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Abstract
The hepatitis C virus (HCV) is known as a main etiological cause of chronic hepatitis. HCV infection disturbs cholesterol metabolism of the host, which is frequently observed in patients suffering from chronic hepatitis C (CHC). The course of viral infections remains under strict [...] Read more.
The hepatitis C virus (HCV) is known as a main etiological cause of chronic hepatitis. HCV infection disturbs cholesterol metabolism of the host, which is frequently observed in patients suffering from chronic hepatitis C (CHC). The course of viral infections remains under strict control of microRNA (miRNA). In the case of HCV, miR-122 exerts a positive effect on HCV replication in vitro. The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of peginterferon alpha (pegIFN-α) and ribavirin treatments on the expression of miR-122 and the cholesterol level in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of CHC patients. We report here that the level of miR-122 expression in the PBMCs decreased after the antiviral treatment in comparison to the pretreated state. Simultaneously, the level of cholesterol in the PBMCs of CHC patients was higher six months following the treatment than it was pretreatment. Consequently, it seems that the decrease of miR-122 expression in the PBMCs of CHC patients is one of the antiviral effects connected with the pegIFN-alpha/ribavirin treatments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hepatitis C Virus Infections)
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Open AccessArticle
Functional and Mass Spectrometric Evaluation of an Anti-Tick Antigen Based on the P0 Peptide Conjugated to Bm86 Protein
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 513; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060513 - 25 Jun 2020
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Abstract
A synthetic 20 amino acid peptide of the ribosomal protein P0 from ticks, when conjugated to keyhole limpet hemocyanin from Megathura crenulata and used as an immunogen against Rhipicephalus microplus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l. species, has shown efficacies of around 90%. There is [...] Read more.
A synthetic 20 amino acid peptide of the ribosomal protein P0 from ticks, when conjugated to keyhole limpet hemocyanin from Megathura crenulata and used as an immunogen against Rhipicephalus microplus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l. species, has shown efficacies of around 90%. There is also experimental evidence of a high efficacy of this conjugate against Amblyomma mixtum and Ixodes ricinus species, which suggest that this antigen could be a good broad-spectrum anti-tick vaccine candidate. In this study, the P0 peptide (pP0) was chemically conjugated to Bm86 as a carrier protein. SDS-PAGE analysis of this conjugate demonstrated that it is highly heterogeneous in size, carrying from 1 to 18 molecules of pP0 per molecule of Bm86. Forty-nine out of the 54 lysine residues and the N-terminal end of Bm86 were found partially linked to pP0 by using LC-MS/MS analysis and the combination of four different softwares. Several post-translational modifications of Bm86 protein were also identified by mass spectrometry. High immunogenicity and efficacy were achieved when dogs and cattle were vaccinated with the pP0–Bm86 conjugate and challenged with R. sanguineus s.l. and R. microplus, respectively. These results encourage the development of this antigen with promising possibilities as an anti-tick vaccine. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Frontiers in Tick Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Seasonal Filarial Infections and Their Black Fly Vectors in Chiang Mai Province, Northern Thailand
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 512; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060512 - 25 Jun 2020
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Abstract
The transmission of zoonotic filarial parasites by black flies has so far been reported in the Chiang Mai and Tak provinces, Thailand, and the bites of these infected black flies can cause a rare disease—human zoonotic onchocerciasis. However, species identification of the filarial [...] Read more.
The transmission of zoonotic filarial parasites by black flies has so far been reported in the Chiang Mai and Tak provinces, Thailand, and the bites of these infected black flies can cause a rare disease—human zoonotic onchocerciasis. However, species identification of the filarial parasites and their black fly vectors in the Chiang Mai province were previously only based on a morphotaxonomic analysis. In this study, a combined approach of morphotaxonomic and molecular analyses (mitochondrial cox1, 12S rRNA, and nuclear 18S rRNA (SSU HVR-I) genes) was used to clarify the natural filarial infections in female black flies collected by using human and swine baits from two study areas (Ban Lek and Ban Pang Dang) in the Chiang Mai province from March 2018 to January 2019. A total of 805 and 4597 adult females, belonging to seven and nine black fly taxa, were collected from Ban Lek and Ban Pang Dang, respectively. At Ban Lek, four of the 309 adult females of Simulium nigrogilvum were positive for Onchocerca species type I in the hot and rainy seasons. At Ban Pang Dang, five unknown filarial larvae (belonging to the same new species) were detected in Simulium sp. in the S. varicorne species-group and in three species in the S. asakoae species-group in all seasons, and three non-filarial larvae of three different taxa were also found in three females of the S. asakoae species-group. This study is the first to molecularly identify new filarial species and their vector black fly species in Thailand. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle
Asymptomatic Strongyloidiasis among Latin American Migrants in Spain: A Community-Based Approach
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 511; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060511 - 24 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Strongyloides stercoralis infection is frequently underdiagnosed since many infections remain asymptomatic. Aim: To estimate the prevalence and characteristics of asymptomatic S. stercoralis infection in Latin American migrants attending a community-based screening program for Chagas disease in Spain. Methodology: Three community-based Chagas disease screening [...] Read more.
Strongyloides stercoralis infection is frequently underdiagnosed since many infections remain asymptomatic. Aim: To estimate the prevalence and characteristics of asymptomatic S. stercoralis infection in Latin American migrants attending a community-based screening program for Chagas disease in Spain. Methodology: Three community-based Chagas disease screening campaigns were performed in Alicante (Spain) in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Serological testing for S. stercoralis infection was performed using a non-automatized IVD-ELISA detecting IgG (DRG Instruments GmbH, Marburg, Germany). Results: Of the 616 migrants from Central and South America who were screened, 601 were included in the study: 100 children and adolescents (<18 years of age) and 501 adults. Among the younger group, 6 participants tested positive (prevalence 6%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.5% to 13.1%), while 60 adults did so (prevalence 12%, 95% CI 9.3% to 15.3%). S. stercoralis infection was more common in men than in women (odds ratio adjusted [ORa] 2.28, 95% CI 1.289 to 4.03) and in those from Bolivia (ORa 2.03, 95% CI 1.15 to 3.59). Prevalence increased with age (ORa 1.02, 95% CI 0.99 to 1.05). In contrast, a university education had a protective effect (ORa 0.29, 95% CI 0.31 to 0.88). Forty-one (41/66; 62.1%) of the total cases of S. stercoralis infection were treated at the health care center. Positive stool samples were observed in 19.5% of the followed-up positive cases. Conclusion: Incorporating serological screening for S. stercoralis into community-based screening for Chagas disease is a useful intervention to detect asymptomatic S. stercoralis infection in Central and South American migrants and an opportunity to tackle neglected tropical diseases in a transversal way. The remaining challenge is to achieve patients’ adherence to the medical follow-up. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Prevalence of Strongyloidiasis and Schistosomiasis)
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Open AccessArticle
Characterization and Comparison of SLAM/CD150 in Free-Ranging Coyotes, Raccoons, and Skunks in Illinois for Elucidation of Canine Distemper Virus Disease
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 510; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060510 - 24 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Canine distemper virus (CDV) is a cause of significant disease in canids and increasingly recognized as a multi-host pathogen, particularly of non-canid families within Carnivora. CDV outbreaks in sympatric mesocarnivores are routinely diagnosed in the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois. CDV [...] Read more.
Canine distemper virus (CDV) is a cause of significant disease in canids and increasingly recognized as a multi-host pathogen, particularly of non-canid families within Carnivora. CDV outbreaks in sympatric mesocarnivores are routinely diagnosed in the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Illinois. CDV is diagnosed more commonly and the disease more severe in raccoons and striped skunks than in coyotes. Research in other species suggests host cell receptors may play a role in variable disease outcome, particularly, the signaling lymphocyte activation molecule (SLAM) located on lymphoid cells. To evaluate receptor differences, partial SLAM genes were sequenced, and predicted amino acid (AA) sequences and structural models of the proposed viral interface assessed. Of 263 aligned nucleotide base pairs, 36 differed between species with 24/36 differences between canid and non-canids. Raccoon and skunk predicted AA sequences had higher homology than coyote and raccoon/skunk sequences and 8/11 residue differences were between coyote and raccoons/skunks. Though protein structure was similar, few residue differences were associated with charge and electrostatic potential surface alterations between canids and non-canids. RNAScope®(Advanced Cell Diagnostics, Silicon Valley, USA) ISH revealed low levels of expression that did not differ significantly between species or tissue type. Results suggest that differences in host receptors may impact species-specific disease manifestation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Canine Distemper Virus Infection)
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Open AccessArticle
Species-Specific Impact of Fusarium Infection on the Root and Shoot Characteristics of Asparagus
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060509 - 24 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Soil-borne pathogens can have considerable detrimental effects on asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) growth and production, notably caused by the Fusarium species F. oxysporum f.sp. asparagi, F. proliferatum and F. redolens. In this study, their species-specific impact regarding disease severity and [...] Read more.
Soil-borne pathogens can have considerable detrimental effects on asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) growth and production, notably caused by the Fusarium species F. oxysporum f.sp. asparagi, F. proliferatum and F. redolens. In this study, their species-specific impact regarding disease severity and root morphological traits was analysed. Additionally, various isolates were characterised based on in vitro physiological activities and on protein extracts using matrix-assisted laser desorption ionisation time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). The response of two asparagus cultivars to the different Fusarium species was evaluated by inoculating experiments. Differences in aggressiveness were observed between Fusarium species and their isolates on roots, while no clear disease symptoms became visible in ferns eight weeks after inoculation. F. redolens isolates Fred1 and Fred2 were the most aggressive strains followed by the moderate aggressive F. proliferatum and the less and almost non-aggressive F. oxysporum isolates, based on the severity of disease symptoms. Fungal DNA in stem bases and a significant induction of pathogenesis-related gene expression was detectable in both asparagus cultivars. A significant negative impact of the pathogens on the root characteristics total root length, volume, and surface area was detected for each isolate tested, with Fred1 causing the strongest effects. No significant differences between the tested asparagus cultivars were observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Soil-Borne Plant Pathogenic Fungi)
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Open AccessArticle
Sequence Analysis of New Tuf Molecular Types of ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma Solani’ in Iranian Vineyards
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 508; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060508 - 24 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Grapevine Bois noir (BN) is caused by ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma solani’ (‘Ca. P. solani’) and is one of the most important phytoplasma diseases in the Euro-Mediterranean viticultural areas. The epidemiology of BN can include grapevine as a plant host and is [...] Read more.
Grapevine Bois noir (BN) is caused by ‘Candidatus Phytoplasma solani’ (‘Ca. P. solani’) and is one of the most important phytoplasma diseases in the Euro-Mediterranean viticultural areas. The epidemiology of BN can include grapevine as a plant host and is usually transmitted via sap-sucking insects that inhabit herbaceous host plants. Tracking the spread of ‘Ca. P. solani’ strains is of great help for the identification of plant reservoirs and insect vectors involved in local BN outbreaks. The molecular epidemiology of ‘Ca. P. solani’ is primarily based on sequence analysis of the tuf housekeeping gene (which encodes elongation factor Tu). In this study, molecular typing of tuf, through restriction fragment length polymorphism and sequencing, was carried out on grapevine samples from Iranian vineyards. According to the molecular characterization, three molecular types—tuf b1, tuf b5 and tuf b6—were found, with tuf b1 being the most prominent. These data provide further knowledge of tuf gene diversity and question the ecological role of such “minor” tuf types in Iranian vineyards, which have been detected only in grapevines. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Clinical Features Associated with Strongyloidiasis in Migrants and the Potential Impact of Immunosuppression: A Case Control Study
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 507; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060507 - 23 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Strongyloides stercoralis is a widely distributed nematode more frequent in tropical areas and particularly severe in immunosuppressed patients. The aim of this study was to determine factors associated with strongyloidiasis in migrants living in a non-endemic area and to assess the response to [...] Read more.
Strongyloides stercoralis is a widely distributed nematode more frequent in tropical areas and particularly severe in immunosuppressed patients. The aim of this study was to determine factors associated with strongyloidiasis in migrants living in a non-endemic area and to assess the response to treatment and follow-up in those diagnosed with the infection. We performed a multicenter case-control study with 158 cases and 294 controls matched 1:2 by a department service. Participants were recruited simultaneously at six hospitals or clinics in Spain. A paired-match analysis was then performed looking for associations and odds ratios in sociodemographic characteristics, pathological background, clinical presentation and analytical details. Cases outcomes after a six-month follow-up visit were also registered and their particularities described. Most cases and controls came from Latin America (63%–47%) or sub-Saharan Africa (26%–35%). The number of years residing in Spain (9.9 vs. 9.8, p = 0.9) and immunosuppression status (30% vs. 36.3%, p = 0.2) were also similar in both groups. Clinical symptoms such as diffuse abdominal pain (21% vs. 13%, p = 0.02), and epigastralgia (29% vs. 18%, p < 0.001); along with a higher eosinophil count (483 vs. 224 cells/mL in cases and controls, p < 0.001) and the mean total Immunoglobulin E (IgE) (354 U/L vs. 157.9 U/L; p < 0.001) were associated with having strongyloidiasis. Finally, 98.2% percent of the cases were treated with ivermectin in different schedules, and 94.5% met the cure criteria at least six months after their first consultation. Abdominal pain, epigastralgia, eosinophilia, increased levels of IgE and Latin American origin remain the main features associated with S. stercoralis infection, although this association is less evident in immunosuppressed patients. The appropriate follow-up time to evaluate treatment response based on serology titers should be extended beyond 6 months if the cure criteria are not achieved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Prevalence of Strongyloidiasis and Schistosomiasis)
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Open AccessReview
The Role of Ataxia Telangiectasia Mutant and Rad3-Related DNA Damage Response in Pathogenesis of Human Papillomavirus
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 506; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060506 - 23 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection leads to a variety of benign lesions and malignant tumors such as cervical cancer and head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Several HPV vaccines have been developed that can help to prevent cervical carcinoma, but these vaccines are only [...] Read more.
Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection leads to a variety of benign lesions and malignant tumors such as cervical cancer and head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Several HPV vaccines have been developed that can help to prevent cervical carcinoma, but these vaccines are only effective in individuals with no prior HPV infection. Thus, it is still important to understand the HPV life cycle and in particular the association of HPV with human pathogenesis. HPV production requires activation of the DNA damage response (DDR), which is a complex signaling network composed of multiple sensors, mediators, transducers, and effectors that safeguard cellular DNAs to maintain the host genome integrity. In this review, we focus on the roles of the ataxia telangiectasia mutant and Rad3-related (ATR) DNA damage response in HPV DNA replication. HPV can induce ATR expression and activate the ATR pathway. Inhibition of the ATR pathway results in suppression of HPV genome maintenance and amplification. The mechanisms underlying this could be through various molecular pathways such as checkpoint signaling and transcriptional regulation. In light of these findings, other downstream mechanisms of the ATR pathway need to be further investigated for better understanding HPV pathogenesis and developing novel ATR DDR-related inhibitors against HPV infection. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Research into Neospora caninum—What Have We Learnt in the Last Thirty Years?
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 505; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060505 - 23 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Background: Neospora caninum has been recognised world-wide, first as a disease of dogs, then as an important cause of abortions in cattle for the past thirty years. Over that time period, there have been improvements in the diagnosis of infection and abortion, new [...] Read more.
Background: Neospora caninum has been recognised world-wide, first as a disease of dogs, then as an important cause of abortions in cattle for the past thirty years. Over that time period, there have been improvements in the diagnosis of infection and abortion, new tests have been developed and validated, and it is timely to review progress to date. Methods: Bibliometric methods were used to identify major trends and research topics present in the published literature on N. caninum. The tools used were SWIFT-Review, VOSviewer and SciMAT, along with the published papers found in the MEDLINE, Dimensions and Web of Science databases. A systematic review of the published Neospora literature (n = 2933) was also carried out via MEDLINE and systematically appraised for publications relevant to the pathogenesis, pathology and diagnosis of Neospora abortions. Results: A total of 92 publications were included in the final analysis and grouped into four main time periods. In these four different time periods, the main research themes were “dogs”, “abortion”, “seroprevalence” and “infection”. Diagnostics, including PCR, dominated the first two time periods, with an increased focus on transmission and abortions, and its risk factors in cattle. Conclusions: Longitudinal analyses indicated that the main themes were consistently investigated over the last 30 years through a wide range of studies, with evolving emphasis initially on dogs and diagnostic test development, followed by application to cattle, the identification of the risk factors leading to abortion, and in the latter time periods, an understanding of the immunity and a search for vaccines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neospora Caninum: Infection and Immunity)
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Open AccessArticle
Environmental Risk of Leptospirosis in Animals: The Case of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Russian Federation
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 504; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060504 - 23 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Leptospirosis is a zoonotic natural focal disease caused by the pathogenic bacteria Leptospira. Its spread is related to certain ecological factors. The aim of the current research was to assess potential exposure to the infection as a function of environmental determinants in the [...] Read more.
Leptospirosis is a zoonotic natural focal disease caused by the pathogenic bacteria Leptospira. Its spread is related to certain ecological factors. The aim of the current research was to assess potential exposure to the infection as a function of environmental determinants in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Russian Federation. We applied environmental niche modeling using leptospirosis cases in livestock and wild animals in 1995–2019 with regard to a set of landscape, climatic, and socioeconomic variables, both for the current climate and for the projected climate for 2041–2060. The MaxEnt model performed well (AUC = 0.930), with the mean temperature of the warmest quarter, mean diurnal range, land cover type, and altitude being the most contributing variables. Consequent zoning based on the proportion of high-risk cells within each administrative unit suggested that five out of the 36 districts of the Republic are at high risk in the current climate conditions, with three more districts expected to demonstrate a high risk by 2060. This study presents the first-ever attempt at leptospirosis ecological modeling in Russia. Its results correspond well to the findings of other authors and underline the importance of considering ecological factors when conducting a leptospirosis risk assessment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Leptospira infections in Domestic and Wild Animal)
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Open AccessArticle
Global Prevalence Estimates of Toxascaris leonina Infection in Dogs and Cats
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 503; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060503 - 23 Jun 2020
Viewed by 272
Abstract
Toxascaris leonina is an ascaridoid nematode of dogs and cats; this parasite affects the health of these animals. This study estimated the global prevalence of Ta. leonina infection in dogs and cats using random effects meta-analysis as well as subgroup, meta-regression and heterogeneity [...] Read more.
Toxascaris leonina is an ascaridoid nematode of dogs and cats; this parasite affects the health of these animals. This study estimated the global prevalence of Ta. leonina infection in dogs and cats using random effects meta-analysis as well as subgroup, meta-regression and heterogeneity analyses. The data were stratified according to geographical region, the type of dogs and cats and environmental variables. A quantitative analysis of 135 published studies, involving 119,317 dogs and 25,364 cats, estimated prevalence rates of Ta. leonina in dogs and cats at 2.9% and 3.4%, respectively. Prevalence was highest in the Eastern Mediterranean region (7.2% for dogs and 10.0% for cats) and was significantly higher in stray dogs (7.0% vs. 1.5%) and stray cats (7.5% vs. 1.8%) than in pets. The findings indicate that, worldwide, ~26 million dogs and ~23 million cats are infected with Ta. leonina; these animals would shed substantial numbers of Ta. leonina eggs into the environment each year and might represent reservoirs of infection to other accidental or paratenic hosts. It is important that populations of dogs and cats as well as other canids and felids be monitored and dewormed for Ta. leonina and (other) zoonotic helminths. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Parasitic Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle
A Probiotic-Based Sanitation System for the Reduction of Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Resistances: A Budget Impact Analysis
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 502; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060502 - 23 Jun 2020
Viewed by 454
Abstract
Healthcare associated infections (HAIs) and antibiotic resistance have high social and economic burdens. Healthcare environments play an important role in the transmission of HAIs. The Probiotic Cleaning Hygiene System (PCHS) has been shown to decrease hospital surface pathogens up to 90% vs. conventional [...] Read more.
Healthcare associated infections (HAIs) and antibiotic resistance have high social and economic burdens. Healthcare environments play an important role in the transmission of HAIs. The Probiotic Cleaning Hygiene System (PCHS) has been shown to decrease hospital surface pathogens up to 90% vs. conventional chemical cleaning (CCC). This study compares PCHS to CCC as to reduction of HAIs and their severity, related antibiotic resistances, and costs. Incidence rates of HAIs/antibiotic resistances were estimated from a previously conducted multicenter pre-post (6 months CCC + 6 months PCHS) intervention study, after applying the propensity score matching technique. A budget impact analysis compared the current scenario of use of CCC with future scenarios considering increasing utilization of PCHS, from 5% to 50% in the next five years, from a hospital perspective in Italy. The cumulative incidence of HAI was 4.6% and 2.4% (p < 0.0001) for CCC (N = 4160) and PCHS (N = 4160) (OR = 0.47, CI 95% 0.37–0.60), with severe HAIs of 1.57% vs. 1% and antibiotic resistances of 1.13% vs. 0.53%, respectively. Increased use of PCHS over CCC in Italian internal medicine/geriatrics and neurology departments in the next 5 years is expected to avert at least about 31,000 HAIs and 8500 antibiotic resistances, and save at least 14 million euros, of which 11.6 for the treatment of resistant HAIs. Innovative, environmentally sustainable sanitation systems, like PCHS, might substantially reduce antibiotic resistance and increase protection of health worldwide. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthcare-Associated Infections)
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Open AccessReview
Emerging Prevention and Treatment Strategies to Control COVID-19
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 501; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060501 - 23 Jun 2020
Viewed by 1899
Abstract
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), has now become a serious global threat after inflicting more than 8 million infections and 425,000 deaths in less than 6 months. Currently, no definitive treatment or prevention [...] Read more.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), has now become a serious global threat after inflicting more than 8 million infections and 425,000 deaths in less than 6 months. Currently, no definitive treatment or prevention therapy exists for COVID-19. The unprecedented rise of this pandemic has rapidly fueled research efforts to discover and develop new vaccines and treatment strategies against this novel coronavirus. While hundreds of vaccines/therapeutics are still in the preclinical or early stage of clinical development, a few of them have shown promising results in controlling the infection. Here, in this review, we discuss the promising vaccines and treatment options for COVID-19, their challenges, and potential alternative strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SARS-CoV Infections)
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Open AccessReview
Classical Swine Fever Virus Biology, Clinicopathology, Diagnosis, Vaccines and a Meta-Analysis of Prevalence: A Review from the Indian Perspective
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 500; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060500 - 22 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Classical swine fever (CSF) is an economically significant, multi-systemic, highly contagious viral disease of swine world over. The disease is notifiable to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) due to its enormous consequences on porcine health and the pig industry. In India, [...] Read more.
Classical swine fever (CSF) is an economically significant, multi-systemic, highly contagious viral disease of swine world over. The disease is notifiable to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) due to its enormous consequences on porcine health and the pig industry. In India, the pig population is 9.06 million and contributes around 1.7% of the total livestock population. The pig industry is not well organized and is mostly concentrated in the eastern and northeastern states of the country (~40% of the country’s population). Since the first suspected CSF outbreak in India during 1944, a large number of outbreaks have been reported across the country, and CSF has acquired an endemic status. As of date, there is a scarcity of comprehensive information on CSF from India. Therefore, in this review, we undertook a systematic review to compile and evaluate the prevalence and genetic diversity of the CSF virus situation in the porcine population from India, targeting particular virus genes sequence analysis, published reports on prevalence, pathology, and updates on indigenous diagnostics and vaccines. The CSF virus (CSFV) is genetically diverse, and at least three phylogenetic groups are circulating throughout the world. In India, though genotype 1.1 predominates, recently published reports point toward increasing evidence of co-circulation of sub-genotype 2.2 followed by 2.1. Sequence identities and phylogenetic analysis of Indian CSFV reveal high genetic divergence among circulating strains. In the meta-analysis random-effects model, the estimated overall CSF prevalence was 35.4%, encompassing data from both antigen and antibody tests, and region-wise sub-group analysis indicated variable incidence from 25% in the southern to nearly 40% in the central zone, eastern, and northeastern regions. A country-wide immunization approach, along with other control measures, has been implemented to reduce the disease incidence and eliminate the virus in time to come. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Classical Swine Fever)
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Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Diagnostic Tools for the Detection of Dirofilaria immitis Infection in Dogs
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 499; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060499 - 22 Jun 2020
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Abstract
In the last two decades, reports of canine heartworm (HW) infection have increased even in non-endemic areas, with a large variability in prevalence data due to the diagnostic strategy employed. This study evaluated the relative performance of two microtiter plate ELISA methods for [...] Read more.
In the last two decades, reports of canine heartworm (HW) infection have increased even in non-endemic areas, with a large variability in prevalence data due to the diagnostic strategy employed. This study evaluated the relative performance of two microtiter plate ELISA methods for the detection of HW antigen in determining the occurrence of Dirofilaria immitis in a dog population previously tested by the modified Knott’s test and SNAP 4Dx Plus test. The prevalence of this infection in the sheltered dog population (n = 363) from a high-risk area for HW infection was 44.4% according to the modified Knott’s test and 58.1% according to a point-of-care antigen ELISA. All serum samples were then evaluated by a microtiter plate ELISA test performed with and without immune complex dissociation (ICD). The prevalence increased from 56.5% to 79.6% following ICD, indicating a high proportion of samples with immune complexing. Comparing these results to that of the modified Knott’s test, the samples negative for microfilariae (mfs) and those positive only for D. repens mfs demonstrated the greatest increase in the proportion of positive results for D. immitis by ELISA following ICD. While the ICD method is not recommended for routine screening, it may be a valuable secondary strategy for identifying HW infections in dogs. Full article
Open AccessArticle
MLVA-16 Genotyping of Brucella abortus and Brucella melitensis Isolates from Different Animal Species in Egypt: Geographical Relatedness and the Mediterranean Lineage
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 498; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060498 - 22 Jun 2020
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Abstract
Brucellosis is a common zoonotic disease in Egypt. However, there are limited data available on the genetic diversity of brucellae circulating in Egypt and other Mediterranean areas. One hundred and nine Brucella (B.) strains were isolated from different animal species in [...] Read more.
Brucellosis is a common zoonotic disease in Egypt. However, there are limited data available on the genetic diversity of brucellae circulating in Egypt and other Mediterranean areas. One hundred and nine Brucella (B.) strains were isolated from different animal species in thirteen Egyptian governorates. Multi-locus variable number tandem repeats (VNTRs) analysis (MLVA-16) was employed to determine the geographical relatedness and the genetic diversity of a panel of selected Egyptian strains (n = 69), with strains originating from Italy (n = 49), Portugal (n = 52), Greece (n = 63), and Tunisia (n = 4). Egyptian B. melitensis strains clustered into two main clusters containing 21 genotypes. Egyptian B. abortus strains clustered into three main clusters containing nine genotypes. The genotypes were irregularly distributed over time and space in the study area. Egyptian strains of B. melitensis showed MLVA-16 patterns closer to that of Italian strains. Egyptian B. abortus strains isolated from cattle share the same genotype with strains from Portugal and similar to strains from Italy with low genetic diversity. Strains with similar MLVA patterns isolated from different governorates highlight the movement of the pathogen among governorates. Hence, it may also reflect the long endemicity of brucellosis in Egypt with earlier dispersal of types and great local genetic diversity. Open markets may contribute to cross-species transmission and dissemination of the new types nationwide. The presence of West Mediterranean lineages of B. melitensis and relatedness of B. abortus strains from the studied countries is a result of the socio-historical connections among the Mediterranean countries. Transnational eradication of brucellosis in the Mediterranean basin is highly demanded. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Pathogens)
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Open AccessEditorial
Transmission of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria and Genes: Unveiling the Jigsaw Pieces of a One Health Problem
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 497; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060497 - 22 Jun 2020
Viewed by 257
Abstract
Antimicrobial Resistance is one of the major Global Health challenges of the twenty-first century, and one of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) top ten global health threats. The evolution of antibiotic resistance among bacterial pathogens requires urgent concerted global efforts under a One [...] Read more.
Antimicrobial Resistance is one of the major Global Health challenges of the twenty-first century, and one of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) top ten global health threats. The evolution of antibiotic resistance among bacterial pathogens requires urgent concerted global efforts under a One Health approach integrating human, animal, and environmental surveillance data. This is crucial to develop efficient control strategies and counteract the spread of multidrug-resistant pathogens. The studies in this Special Issue have evidenced the hidden role of less common species, unusual clones or unexplored niches in the dissemination of antimicrobial resistance between different hosts. They reinforce the need for large-scale surveillance studies tracing and tracking both antibiotic resistance and metal tolerance in different bacterial species. Full article
Open AccessArticle
S-methyl Methanethiosulfonate: Promising Late Blight Inhibitor or Broad Range Toxin?
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 496; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060496 - 22 Jun 2020
Viewed by 259
Abstract
(1) Background: S-methyl methanethiosulfonate (MMTS), a sulfur containing volatile organic compound produced by plants and bacterial species, has recently been described to be an efficient anti-oomycete agent with promising perspectives for the control of the devastating potato late blight disease caused by Phytophthora [...] Read more.
(1) Background: S-methyl methanethiosulfonate (MMTS), a sulfur containing volatile organic compound produced by plants and bacterial species, has recently been described to be an efficient anti-oomycete agent with promising perspectives for the control of the devastating potato late blight disease caused by Phytophthora infestans. However, earlier work raised questions regarding the putative toxicity of this compound. To assess the suitability of MMTS for late blight control in the field, the present study thus aimed at evaluating the effect of MMTS on a wide range of non-target organisms in comparison to P. infestans. (2) Methods: To this end, we exposed P. infestans, as well as different pathogenic and non-pathogenic fungi, bacteria, the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans as well as the plant Arabidopsis thaliana to MMTS treatment and evaluated their response by means of in vitro assays. (3) Results: Our results showed that fungi (both mycelium and spores) tolerated MMTS better than the oomycete P. infestans, but that the compound nevertheless exhibited non-negligible toxic effects on bacteria, nematodes and plants. (4) Conclusions: We discuss the mode of action of MMTS and conclude that even though this compound might be too toxic for chemical application in the field, its strong anti-oomycete activity could still be exploited when naturally released at the site of infection by plant-associated microbes inoculated as biocontrol agents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology and Pathology of Phytophthora infestans)
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Open AccessArticle
In Silico Design and Validation of OvMANE1, a Chimeric Antigen for Human Onchocerciasis Diagnosis
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060495 - 22 Jun 2020
Viewed by 426
Abstract
The public health goal of onchocerciasis in Africa has advanced from control to elimination. In this light, accurate diagnosis is necessary to determine treatment endpoints and confirm elimination, as well as to conduct surveillance for the identification of any possible recrudescence of the [...] Read more.
The public health goal of onchocerciasis in Africa has advanced from control to elimination. In this light, accurate diagnosis is necessary to determine treatment endpoints and confirm elimination, as well as to conduct surveillance for the identification of any possible recrudescence of the disease. Currently, the monitoring of onchocerciasis elimination relies on the Ov-16 test. However, this test is unable to discriminate between past and active infections. Furthermore, about 15–25% of infected persons are reported to be negative for the Ov-16 test, giving a misleading sense of security to false-negative individuals who might continue to serve as reservoirs for infections. Therefore, we opted to design and validate a more sensitive and specific chimeric antigen (OvMANE1) for onchocerciasis diagnosis, using previously reported immunodominant peptides of O. volvulus, the parasite responsible for the disease. In silico analysis of OvMANE1 predicted it to be more antigenic than its individual peptides. We observed that OvMANE1 reacts specifically and differentially with sera from O. volvulus infected and non-infected individuals, as well as with sera from communities of different levels of endemicity. Moreover, we found that total IgG, unlike IgG4 subclass, positively responded to OvMANE1, strongly suggesting its complementarity to the Ov-16 diagnostic tool, which detects Ov-16 IgG4 antibodies. Overall, OvMANE1 exhibited the potential to be utilized in the development of specific diagnostic tools—based on both antibody capture and antigen capture reactions—which are indispensable to monitor the progress of onchocerciasis elimination programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Onchocerciasis and River Epilepsy)
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Open AccessCase Report
Actinotignum schaalii Abscess in a Patient with Common Variable Immunodeficiency
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 494; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060494 - 22 Jun 2020
Viewed by 266
Abstract
Actinotignum schaalii is an anaerobic, gram-positive commensal organism of the urogenital tract. A. schaalii typically causes urinary tract infections, predominantly in the elderly. Here, we describe the first case of A. schaalii infection presenting as cellulitis and abscess in a patient with common [...] Read more.
Actinotignum schaalii is an anaerobic, gram-positive commensal organism of the urogenital tract. A. schaalii typically causes urinary tract infections, predominantly in the elderly. Here, we describe the first case of A. schaalii infection presenting as cellulitis and abscess in a patient with common variable immunodeficiency. The patient was successfully treated with an incision and drainage and a prolonged antibiotic course. A. schaalii infection should be considered in sterile abscesses, and anaerobic cultures should be requested in the absence of positive routine cultures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Pathogens)
Open AccessReview
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID–19): A Short Review on Hematological Manifestations
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 493; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060493 - 20 Jun 2020
Viewed by 589
Abstract
Infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS–CoV–2) is a rapidly spreading and devastating global pandemic. Many researchers are attempting to clarify the mechanisms of infection and to develop a drug or vaccine against the virus, but there are still no proven [...] Read more.
Infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS–CoV–2) is a rapidly spreading and devastating global pandemic. Many researchers are attempting to clarify the mechanisms of infection and to develop a drug or vaccine against the virus, but there are still no proven effective treatments. The present article reviews the common presenting hematological manifestations of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID–19). Elucidating the changes in hematological parameters in SARS–CoV–2 infected patients could help to understand the pathophysiology of the disease and may provide early clues to diagnosis. Several studies have shown that hematological parameters are markers of disease severity and suggest that they mediate disease progression. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SARS-CoV Infections)
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Open AccessArticle
Histopathological and Molecular Study of Pacific Oyster Tissues Provides Insights into V. aestuarianus Infection Related to Oyster Mortality
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 492; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060492 - 20 Jun 2020
Viewed by 260
Abstract
Consumer preference for healthy and sustainable food products has been steadily increasing in recent years. Bivalve mollusks satisfy these characteristics and have captured ever-increasing market shares. However, the expansion of molluscan culture in worldwide and global trade have favored the spread of pathogens [...] Read more.
Consumer preference for healthy and sustainable food products has been steadily increasing in recent years. Bivalve mollusks satisfy these characteristics and have captured ever-increasing market shares. However, the expansion of molluscan culture in worldwide and global trade have favored the spread of pathogens around the world. Combined with environmental changes and intensive production systems this has contributed to the occurrence of mass mortality episodes, thus posing a threat to the production of different species, including the Pacific oyster Crassotrea gigas. In the San Teodoro lagoon, one of the most devoted lagoons to extensive Pacific oyster aquaculture in Sardinia, a mortality outbreak was observed with an estimated 80% final loss of animal production. A study combining cultural, biomolecular and histopathological methods was conducted: (1) to investigate the presence of different Vibrio species and OsHV-1 in selected oyster tissues (digestive gland, gills, and mantle); (2) to quantify Vibrio aestuarianus and to evaluate the severity of hemocyte infiltration in infected tissues; (3) to produce post-amplification data and evaluating ToxR gene as a target for phylogenetic analyses. Results provide new insights into V. aestuarianus infection related to oyster mortality outbreaks and pave the way to the development of tools for oyster management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Spontaneous Diseases of Mollusks)
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Open AccessArticle
Patterns of Ecological Adaptation of Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus and Stegomyia Indices Highlight the Potential Risk of Arbovirus Transmission in Yaoundé, the Capital City of Cameroon
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 491; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060491 - 20 Jun 2020
Viewed by 804
Abstract
The dynamic of arbovirus vectors such as Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus remains poorly understood in large cities in central Africa. Here, we compared the larval ecology, geographical distribution and degree of infestation of Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus in Yaoundé, the capital [...] Read more.
The dynamic of arbovirus vectors such as Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus remains poorly understood in large cities in central Africa. Here, we compared the larval ecology, geographical distribution and degree of infestation of Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus in Yaoundé, the capital city of Cameroon, and estimated their Stegomyia indices revealing a significant potential risk of arbovirus transmission. An entomological survey was conducted in April–May 2018 in a cluster of houses randomly selected. Each selected house was inspected, the number of inhabitants was recorded, and potential and positive containers for Aedes were characterized. Stegomyia and pupae-based indices were estimated. Overall, 447 houses and 954 containers were inspected comprising 10,801 immature stages of Aedes with 84.95% of Ae. albopictus and 15.05% of Ae. aegypti. Both species bred mainly in discarded tanks and used tyres, associated with turbid water and the presence of plant debris inside containers. Aedes albopictus was the most prevalent species in almost all neighbourhoods. The house index, Breteau index, and container index were higher for Ae. albopictus (38.26%, 71.81%, and 29.61%) compared to those of Ae. aegypti (25.73%, 40.93%, and 16.88%). These indices are high compared to the thresholds established by Pan American Health Organization and World Health Organization, which suggests a high potential risk of arbovirus transmission. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effectiveness and Sustainability of an Antimicrobial Stewardship Program for Perioperative Prophylaxis in Pediatric Surgery
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 490; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060490 - 19 Jun 2020
Viewed by 239
Abstract
Background—Appropriate perioperative antibiotic prophylaxis (PAP) is essential to prevent surgical site infections (SSIs) and to avoid antibiotics misuse. Aim—The aim of this study is to determine the effectiveness and long-term sustainability of an antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP), based on a clinical pathway (CP) [...] Read more.
Background—Appropriate perioperative antibiotic prophylaxis (PAP) is essential to prevent surgical site infections (SSIs) and to avoid antibiotics misuse. Aim—The aim of this study is to determine the effectiveness and long-term sustainability of an antimicrobial stewardship program (ASP), based on a clinical pathway (CP) and periodic education, to improve adherence to the guidelines for PAP in a tertiary care pediatric surgery center. Methods—We assessed the changes in PAP correctness and its effect on SSIs between the six months before and the 24 months after the implementation of ASP in the Pediatric Surgery Unit of the Department of Women’s and Children’s Health of Padova. The ASP was addressed to all surgeons and anesthesiologists of the Pediatric Surgery Unit. The primary outcome was appropriateness of PAP (agent, timing of the first dose, and duration). SSI rate was the secondary outcome. Results—1771 patients were included in the study and 676 received PAP. The overall correctness of the PAP, in terms of agent, timing, and duration, increased significantly after the CP implementation. What changed most was the PAP discontinuation within 24 h (p < 0.001). Cefazolin was the most used antibiotic, with a significant increase in the post-intervention period (p < 0.001) and with a reduction in the use of other broad-spectrum antibiotics. No variations in the incidence of SSIs were reported in the five periods (p = 0.958). Conclusion—The implementation of an ASP based on CP and education is an effective and sustainable antimicrobial stewardship tool for improving the correct use of PAP. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
In Vitro Incorporation of Helicobacter pylori into Candida albicans Caused by Acidic pH Stress
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 489; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060489 - 19 Jun 2020
Viewed by 278
Abstract
Yeasts can adapt to a wide range of pH fluctuations (2 to 10), while Helicobacter pylori, a facultative intracellular bacterium, can adapt to a range from pH 6 to 8. This work analyzed if H. pylori J99 can protect itself from acidic [...] Read more.
Yeasts can adapt to a wide range of pH fluctuations (2 to 10), while Helicobacter pylori, a facultative intracellular bacterium, can adapt to a range from pH 6 to 8. This work analyzed if H. pylori J99 can protect itself from acidic pH by entering into Candida albicans ATCC 90028. Growth curves were determined for H. pylori and C. albicans at pH 3, 4, and 7. Both microorganisms were co-incubated at the same pH values, and the presence of intra-yeast bacteria was evaluated. Intra-yeast bacteria-like bodies were detected using wet mounting, and intra-yeast binding of anti-H. pylori antibodies was detected using immunofluorescence. The presence of the H. pylori rDNA 16S gene in total DNA from yeasts was demonstrated after PCR amplification. H. pylori showed larger death percentages at pH 3 and 4 than at pH 7. On the contrary, the viability of the yeast was not affected by any of the pHs evaluated. H. pylori entered into C. albicans at all the pH values assayed but to a greater extent at unfavorable pH values (pH 3 or 4, p = 0.014 and p = 0.001, respectively). In conclusion, it is possible to suggest that H. pylori can shelter itself within C. albicans under unfavorable pH conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle
Serologic and Molecular Diagnosis of Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis Infection in Dogs in an Endemic Region
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 488; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060488 - 19 Jun 2020
Viewed by 292
Abstract
Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis are obligate intracellular, tick-borne rickettsial pathogens of dogs that may cause life-threatening diseases. In this study, we assessed the usefulness of PCR and a widely used commercial antibody-based point-of-care (POC) test to diagnose A. platys and E. canis [...] Read more.
Anaplasma platys and Ehrlichia canis are obligate intracellular, tick-borne rickettsial pathogens of dogs that may cause life-threatening diseases. In this study, we assessed the usefulness of PCR and a widely used commercial antibody-based point-of-care (POC) test to diagnose A. platys and E. canis infection and updated the prevalence of these pathogens in dogs inhabiting the Caribbean island of Saint Kitts. We detected A. platys in 62/227 (27%), E. canis in 84/227 (37%), and the presence of both in 43/227 (19%) of the dogs using PCR. POC testing was positive for A. platys in 53/187 (28%), E. canis in 112/187 (60%), and for both in 42/187 (22%) of the samples tested. There was only a slight agreement between A. platys PCR and POC test results and a fair agreement for E. canis PCR and POC test results. Our study suggests that PCR testing may be particularly useful in the early stage of infection when antibody levels are low or undetectable, whereas, POC test is useful when false-negative PCR results occur due to low bacteremia. A combination of PCR and POC tests may increase the ability to diagnose A. platys and E. canis infection and consequently will improve patient management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Canine and Feline Infectious Diseases)
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Open AccessArticle
The PK/PD Integration and Resistance of Tilmicosin against Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 487; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060487 - 19 Jun 2020
Viewed by 277
Abstract
Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae is the major pathogen causing enzootic pneumonia in pigs. M. hyopneumoniae infection can lead to considerable economic losses in the pig-breeding industry. Here, this study established a first-order absorption, one-compartment model to study the relationship between the pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) index of [...] Read more.
Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae is the major pathogen causing enzootic pneumonia in pigs. M. hyopneumoniae infection can lead to considerable economic losses in the pig-breeding industry. Here, this study established a first-order absorption, one-compartment model to study the relationship between the pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) index of tilmicosin against M. hyopneumoniae in vitro. We simulated different drug concentrations of timicosin in the fluid lining the lung epithelia of pigs. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of tilmicosin against M. hyopneumoniae with an inoculum of 106 CFU/mL was 1.6 μg/mL using the microdilution method. Static time–kill curves showed that if the drug concentration >1 MIC, the antibacterial effect showed different degrees of inhibition. At 32 MIC, the amount of bacteria decreased by 3.16 log10 CFU/mL, thereby achieving a mycoplasmacidal effect. The M. hyopneumoniae count was reduced from 3.61 to 5.11 log10 CFU/mL upon incubation for 96 h in a dynamic model with a dose of 40–200 mg, thereby achieving mycoplasmacidal activity. The area under the concentration-time curve over 96 h divided by the MIC (AUC0–96 h/MIC) was the best-fit PK/PD parameters for predicting the antibacterial activity of tilmicosin against M. hyopneumoniae (R2 = 0.99), suggesting that tilmicosin had concentration-dependent activity. The estimated value for AUC0–96 h/MIC for 2log10 (CFU/mL) reduction and 3log10 (CFU/mL) reduction from baseline was 70.55 h and 96.72 h. Four M. hyopneumoniae strains (M1–M4) with reduced sensitivity to tilmicosin were isolated from the four dose groups. The susceptibility of these strains to tylosin, erythromycin and lincomycin was also reduced significantly. For sequencing analyses of 23S rRNA, an acquired A2058G transition in region V was found only in resistant M. hyopneumoniae strains (M3, M4). In conclusion, in an in vitro model, the effect of tilmicosin against M. hyopneumoniae was concentration-dependent and had a therapeutic effect. These results will help to design the optimal dosing regimen for tilmicosin in M. hyopneumoniae infection, and minimize the emergence of resistant bacteria. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Insecticidal Activity of Bacteria from Larvae Breeding Site with Natural Larvae Mortality: Screening of Separated Supernatant and Pellet Fractions
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 486; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060486 - 18 Jun 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 573
Abstract
Mosquitoes can transmit to humans devastating and deadly pathogens. As many chemical insecticides are banned due to environmental side effects or are of reduced efficacy due to resistance, biological control, including the use of bacterial strains with insecticidal activity, is of increasing interest [...] Read more.
Mosquitoes can transmit to humans devastating and deadly pathogens. As many chemical insecticides are banned due to environmental side effects or are of reduced efficacy due to resistance, biological control, including the use of bacterial strains with insecticidal activity, is of increasing interest and importance. The urgent actual need relies on the discovery of new compounds, preferably of a biological nature. Here, we explored the phenomenon of natural larvae mortality in larval breeding sites to identify potential novel compounds that may be used in biological control. From there, we isolated 14 bacterial strains of the phylum Firmicutes, most of the order Bacillales. Cultures were carried out under controlled conditions and were separated on supernatant and pellet fractions. The two fractions and a 1:1 mixture of the two fractions were tested on L3 and early L4 Aedes albopictus. Two concentrations were tested (2 and 6 mg/L). Larvae mortality was recorded at 24, 48 and 72 h and compared to that induced by the commercialized B. thuringiensis subsp. israelensis. Of the 14 strains isolated, 11 were active against the A. albopictus larvae: 10 of the supernatant fractions and one pellet fraction, and mortality increased with the concentration. For the insecticide activity prediction in three strains of the Bacillus cereus complex, PCR screening of the crystal (Cry) and cytolytic (Cyt) protein families characteristic to B. thuringiensis subsp. israelensis was performed. Most of the genes coding for these proteins’ synthesis were not detected. We identified bacterial strains that exhibit higher insecticidal activity compared with a commercial product. Further studies are needed for the characterization of active compounds. Full article
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Open AccessReview
COVID-19 in Pregnant Women and Neonates: A Systematic Review of the Literature with Quality Assessment of the Studies
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 485; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060485 - 18 Jun 2020
Viewed by 1178
Abstract
The SARS-CoV-2 virus emerged in December 2019 and then spread globally. Little is still known about the impact of COVID-19 on pregnant women and neonates. A review of the literature was performed according to the PRISMA guideline recommendations, searching the MEDLINE and EMBASE [...] Read more.
The SARS-CoV-2 virus emerged in December 2019 and then spread globally. Little is still known about the impact of COVID-19 on pregnant women and neonates. A review of the literature was performed according to the PRISMA guideline recommendations, searching the MEDLINE and EMBASE databases. Studies’ quality assessments were performed using the JBI Critical Appraisal Checklist. A total of 37 studies were included, involving 275 pregnant women with COVID-19 and 248 neonates. The majority of pregnant women presented with mild to moderate symptoms, only 10 were admitted in the ICU, and one died. Two stillbirths were reported and the incidence of prematurity was 28%. Sixteen neonates were tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by RT-PCR, and nine of them were born from mothers infected during pregnancy. Neonatal outcomes were generally good: all the affected neonates recovered. RT-PCR for SARS-CoV-2 yielded negative results on amniotic fluid, vaginal/cervical fluids, placenta tissue, and breast milk samples. SARS-CoV-2 infection in pregnant women appeared associated with mild or moderate disease in most cases, with a low morbidity and mortality rate. The outcomes of neonates born from infected women were mainly favorable, although neonates at risk should be closely monitored. Further studies are needed to investigate the possibility of vertical transmission. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human Pathogens)
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