Author Interviews, Hospital Acquired, Infections, NIH, Surgical Research, University of Pennsylvania, Wake Forest / 09.03.2014

William G Ward, Sr. MD Chair of Orthopaedic Surgery, Chief of Musculoskeletal Service Line - Guthrie Clinic One Guthrie Square Sayre, Pennsylvania 18840 (Professor Emeritus - Wake Forest University Dept of Orthopaedic Surgery) MedicalResearch.com Interview with: William G Ward, Sr. MD Chair of Orthopaedic Surgery, Chief of Musculoskeletal Service Line - Guthrie Clinic Sayre, Pennsylvania 18840 (Professor Emeritus - Wake Forest University Dept of Orthopaedic Surgery) MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of this study? Dr. Ward: The main findings of the study include:
  1. The use of disposable spun-lace “paper” gowns was associated with a dramatic decrease in the likelihood of culture-detected bacterial contamination on the surgeon’s gloved hand and gown sleeve.
  2. For a double-gloved surgeon, changing the outer glove just prior to implant handling should decrease bacterial contamination from the surgeon by about 50%.
  3. Bacteria suspended in saline solution transgressed the material of standard reusable scrub attire in 96% (26/27) of tested gowns and in 0% (0/27) of spun-lace disposable “paper” gowns. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Cancer Research, HPV, Vaccine Studies / 05.03.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Julia Brotherton Victorian Cytology Service, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Dr Elizabeth Crowe The University of Queensland, School of Population Health, Brisbane, Australia NHS Borders, Department of Public Health, Melrose, Scotland, UK Prof. David Whiteman Group Leader / Department Coordinator QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute Royal Brisbane Hospital, QLD 4029 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? 1. We conducted a case-control study in which we retrieved the HPV vaccination histories of young Australian women who were notified to the Pap smear registry with high-grade cervical lesions or with other types of cervical lesions, and compared them with the vaccination histories of women whose Pap smears showed only normal cytology. 2. We found that women with high grade cervical lesions were significantly less likely than women with normal cytology to have received 3 doses of the quadrivalent HPV vaccine, equivalent to a vaccine effectiveness of 46%. 3. The vaccine effectiveness among 15-19 year old women was even higher at 57%. We believe this reflects the fact that HPV16 causes an even higher proportion of high grade disease in young women due to its higher oncogenicity and shorter latent period. 4. The HPV vaccine had 34% effectiveness against other cervical lesions (i.e. those not proven to be high grade lesions on histology). 5. We also observed that 2 doses of the vaccine were 21% effective in preventing both high grade lesions and other grade lesions. (more…)
Author Interviews, CMAJ, Pulmonary Disease, Respiratory, Sleep Disorders / 03.03.2014

Dr. Vincent Yi-Fong Su Department of Chest Medicine Taipei Veterans General Hospital Taipei, Taiwan MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Vincent Yi-Fong Su Department of Chest Medicine Taipei Veterans General Hospital Taipei, Taiwan MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: We found interestingly that patients with sleep apnea experienced a 1.20-fold (95% CI, 1.10-1.31; p <0.001) increase in incident pneumonia compared to patients without sleep apnea. We also demonstrated an “exposure-response relationship,” in that the patients with more severe sleep apnea might have a higher risk for pneumonia than did those of milder severity. (more…)
Annals Thoracic Surgery, Author Interviews, Dental Research, Heart Disease, Infections, Mayo Clinic / 01.03.2014

Dr. Kendra J. Grim Department of Anesthesiology Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905 MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Kendra J. Grim Department of Anesthesiology Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN 55905 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Grim: “The current guidelines say that if possible, treating the dental problems that patients have before heart surgery is best, to try to prevent both early and late heart infections. But the data is very unclear, because it’s very difficult to study. We found in our study that their risk of serious complications after having teeth removed may be higher than we thought. We were primarily looking at stroke, heart attack, renal failure and death. We found that actually the incidence of having one of those major morbidities was 8 percent. Of that 8 percent, we had six patients, or 3 percent, of the total group who died between their dental surgery and scheduled heart surgery, so these patients never made it to their heart surgery. An additional 3 percent of patients died after heart surgery. “ (more…)
Annals Internal Medicine, Author Interviews, Infections, Transplantation / 01.03.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Susan N. Hocevar MD Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Atlanta, GA 30333; MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Hocevar: This public health investigation uncovered microsporidiosis transmitted to 3 organ recipients who received organs from a common donor. This illness cluster was the first recognized occurrence of donor-derived microsporidiosis. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, Outcomes & Safety, Pharmacology, Urinary Tract Infections / 28.02.2014

Dr. Jerome A. Leis, MD, MSc Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Toronto, ON, M4N 3M5, Canada MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Jerome A. Leis, MD, MSc Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Toronto, ON, M4N 3M5, Canada MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Leis: We know that positive urine cultures from patients who lack signs and symptoms of urinary tract infection are a trigger FOR unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions in hospitals. This problem has not improved despite many educational initiatives. We identified a subset of patients in our hospital where only 2% of all urine specimens sent to the laboratory were associated with symptomatic infection and decided to no longer routinely report positive results from these specimens on the electronic medical record, unless a special telephone request was made. We found that with this simple change, unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions declined markedly and this did not require any education of care providers. Most importantly, based on our safety audits, patients who had a urinary tract infection all received appropriate treatment. (more…)
Author Interviews, Dengue, Infections, NEJM, Respiratory / 27.02.2014

Valérie D'Acremont, MD, PhD Group leader Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute | Basel | Switzerland Médecin-adjointe, PD-MER Travel clinic | Department of Ambulatory Care and Community Medicine | University hospital of Lausanne | Switzerland MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Valérie D'Acremont, MD, PhD Group leader Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute | Basel | Switzerland Médecin-adjointe, PD-MER Travel clinic | Department of Ambulatory Care and Community Medicine | University hospital of Lausanne | Switzerland MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. D'Acremont: We discovered that, in a rural and an urban area of Tanzania, half of the children with fever (temperature >38°C) had an acute respiratory infection, mainly of the upper tract (5% only had radiological pneumonia). These infections were mostly of viral origin, in particular influenza. The other children had systemic viral infections such as HHV6, parvovirus B19, EBV or CMV. Overall viral diseases represented 71% of the cases. Only a minority (22%) had a bacterial infection such as typhoid fever, urinary tract infection or sepsis due to bacteremia. Malaria was found in only 10% of the children, even in the rural setting. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, JAMA / 26.02.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Tobias Skillbäck, MD Clinical Neurochemistry Laboratory Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology Department of Neurochemistry, Sahlgrenska Academy University of Gothenburg Mölndal, Sweden MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Skillbäck: There were two main findings in this study. First; Levels of t-tau and the T-tau/P-tau ratio in CSF of CJD (Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease) patients are markedly increased, as compared to patients with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias, and they are high enough to distinguish CJD against these important differential diagnoses. Secondly, levels of these biomarkers tend to increase rapidly with disease progress in Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. This trend could not be observed for Alzheimer's disease and other dementias, and could also be used to clinically distinguish CJD and indicates that repeated CSF measurements might be of value if a clinical suspicion of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Diseaseis present. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, JAMA, Vaccine Studies / 25.02.2014

Signe Sørup, PhD Research Center for Vitamins and Vaccines (CVIVA) Bandim Health Project, Statens Serum Institut Artillerivej 5, DK-2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Signe Sørup, PhD Research Center for Vitamins and Vaccines (CVIVA) Bandim Health Project, Statens Serum Institut Artillerivej 5, DK-2300 Copenhagen S, Denmark MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Sørup: We found that admissions with any type of infection was reduced with 14 % for Danish children having the live, attenuated vaccine against measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) as the most recent vaccine compared with children having the inactivated vaccine against Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Polio, and Haemophilus Influenzae type b (DTaP-IPV-Hib) as the most recent vaccine. In Denmark herd immunity against measles, mumps, and rubella is high and only 26 of the more 42,000 admissions was related to measles, mumps, and rubella; so this finding cannot be explained by the specific protection against the targeted diseases. In Denmark MMR vaccination is recommended at 15 months of age, but only 50% of the children in the study had received MMR before 16 months of age. We estimated that one hospital admission between 16 and 24 months of age could be avoided for 201 children vaccinated with MMR before 16 months of age rather than later. These results are based on a retrospective cohort study including approximately half a million Danish children. The analyses are adjusted for age and a long range of background factors, including socio-economic factors. (more…)
Author Interviews, HIV, Johns Hopkins / 25.02.2014

Samuel R. Friedman PhD Institute of Infectious Disease Research National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. New York, NY Department of Epidemiology Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Samuel R. Friedman PhD Institute of Infectious Disease Research National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. Ny, NY Department of Epidemiology Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Baltimore, MD MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Friedman: The main finding is that programs that helped protect people who inject drugs from HIV and those that helped them to get medical care seem to be associated with less HIV disease and less death related to HIV disease among the heterosexual population of large United States metropolitan areas. This is important. Drug users in the US are widely despised, and their has been a lot of political opposition to programs like syringe exchange and drug abuse treatment. Our findings show that these programs are associated with better health and less death in the broader population. It makes more sense to help people--even those you despise--stay uninfected, and to get medical care, than to restrict or attack programs for them. (more…)
Author Interviews, Bipolar Disorder, Flu - Influenza / 23.02.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Alan S. Brown, M.D., M.P.H. Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Clinical Epidemiology College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University Director Unit in Birth Cohort Studies Division of Epidemiology New York State Psychiatric Institute New York, NY 10032 Alan S. Brown, M.D., M.P.H. Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Clinical Epidemiology College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University Director Unit in Birth Cohort Studies Division of Epidemiology New York State Psychiatric Institute New York, NY MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Brown: We found that a mother's exposure to influenza during pregnancy, documented by antibodies in her serum, increased the risk of bipolar disorder with psychotic symptoms in her offspring. We did not show a relationship between influenza and bipolar disorder not accompanied by psychosis. (more…)
Infections, NEJM / 23.02.2014

Dr. T. M. A van Dongen, MD Univ Med Ctr Utrecht Julius Ctr Hlth Sci & Primary Care, Dept Epidemiol Utrecht, Netherlands. MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. T. M. A van Dongen, MD Univ Med Ctr Utrecht Julius Ctr Hlth Sci & Primary Care, Dept Epidemiol Utrecht, Netherlands. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: We performed a pragmatic trial, in which we randomly assigned 230 children who had acute tympanostomy-tube otorrhea to receive antibiotic-glucocorticoid eardrops, oral antibiotics or to undergo initial observation. The primary outcome of our study was the presence of ear discharge, 2 weeks after study-group assignment. We also looked at, among others, the duration of the initial otorrhea episode and the total number of days of otorrhea and the number of otorrhea recurrences during 6 months of follow-up. We found that antibiotic–glucocorticoid eardrops were superior to oral antibiotics and initial observation for all outcomes. (more…)
Author Interviews, Flu - Influenza, Pediatrics / 14.02.2014

Philip M. Polgreen, MD, MPH. Associate Professor of Internal Medicine - Infectious Diseases University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Philip M. Polgreen, MD, MPH. Associate Professor of Internal Medicine - Infectious Diseases University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Polgreen: In this paper, to determine if well-child visits are associated with increased risk for subsequent influenza-like-illness visits, we used a large database that tracks healthcare expenditures of families over time. Controlling for other factors such as the presence of other children, insurance and demographics, we found that well-child visits were a risk factor for subsequent influenza-like-illness within the next two weeks for a patient or for a family member. The estimated probability of a subsequent influenza-like illness visit was increased by 3.2 percentage points for those with well-child visit. We estimated that this additional risk translates to over 700,000 cases of influenza-like-illness per year in the United States. Total costs (lost wages, medical costs, etc.) for these infections could amount to $500 million annually. (more…)
Author Interviews, HPV, Outcomes & Safety / 13.02.2014

Craig Meyers, Ph.D. Distinguished Professor Department of Microbiology and Immunology H107 The Penn State College of Medicine Hershey, PA 17033 MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Craig Meyers, Ph.D. Distinguished Professor Department of Microbiology and Immunology H107 The Penn State College of Medicine Hershey, PA 17033 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Meyers: The human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV16) is the most common HPV type associated with human cancer. It has always been assumed that HPV16 was susceptible to commonly used disinfectants. However, this has never been tested. We developed the only reproducible method to grow authentic HPV in the laboratory. Our studies show that highly resistant virus; more so than other non-enveloped viruses previously tested. Simply stated that any materials in a healthcare facility that rely on disinfectants (those presently used by healthcare facilities) do absolutely nothing to HPV. This suggests the possibility of risk of infection from inanimate objects, particularly those use in healthcare and dental clinics that depend on disinfectant treatment. Additionally it has been reported that at any one time 20% of individuals with anogenital HPV infections have the virus on their fingertips and the common hand sanitizers do nothing to inactivate the virus. (more…)
Author Interviews, Hospital Acquired / 12.02.2014

Patricia W. Stone, PhD, FAAN Columbia University School of Nursing New York, NY 10032. MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Patricia W. Stone, PhD, FAAN Columbia University School of Nursing New York, NY 10032. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Stone: Our study found variation in the presence of infection control policies directed at central-line bloodstream infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia and catheter-associated urinary tract infections. Even when present, the policies were adhered to only about half of the time. (more…)
Author Interviews, HPV, JAMA, Karolinski Institute, Vaccine Studies / 12.02.2014

Lisen Arnheim Dahlström Associate Professor (Docent) Institutionen för medicinsk epidemiologi och biostatistik Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics Karolinska Institutet Sweden MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lisen Arnheim Dahlström Associate Professor (Docent) Institutionen för medicinsk epidemiologi och biostatistik Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics Karolinska Institutet Sweden MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: The main finding, when studying HPV vaccine effectiveness against condyloma by dose level is that 3 doses offered the maximum protection, although 2 doses also offered a substantial protection. (more…)
Author Interviews, Critical Care - Intensive Care - ICUs, Duke, Flu - Influenza, Vaccine Studies / 11.02.2014

Dr Cameron Wolfe MBBS(Hons), MPH Assistant Professor of Medicine Clinical / Transplant Infectious Diseases Duke University Medical Center MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Cameron Wolfe MBBS(Hons), MPH Assistant Professor of Medicine Clinical / Transplant Infectious Diseases Duke University Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Wolfe: The major findings of the study were that at least in our center, there was a significant burden of critical illness due to H1N1 influenza infection. The average age of the patients admitted to the hospital was just 28yrs, consistent with the younger patient age in 2009 when H1N1 emerged. Most critically, we also observed a significantly lower rate of influenza vaccine uptake in patients admitted to the Intensive Care Units at our center. (more…)
Author Interviews, C. difficile, Gastrointestinal Disease / 10.02.2014

Stephanie Angione PhD Candidate Brown University School of Engineering Center for Biomedical Engineering MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Stephanie Angione PhD Candidate Brown University School of Engineering Center for Biomedical Engineering MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: This study demonstrates the application of a novel nucleic acid detection platform to detect Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) in subjects presenting with acute diarrheal symptoms. This method amplifies three genes associated with C. difficile infection as well as genes associated with virulence attributed to the NAP1/027/BI strain. The novel PCR assay allows for simple and rapid detection of three C. difficile genes: tcdB, cdtB, and tcdC, which code for C. difficile toxin B, C. difficile binary toxin, and a protein suspected to regulate toxin production, which includes the NAP1/027/BI tcdC variant. Amplification of DNA from the tcdB, tcdC and cdtB genes can be carried out using a droplet sandwich platform that performs real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in microliter droplets for the detection and identification of amplified fragments of DNA. Our technique of multiplex gene amplification provides a unique method that is both sensitive and specific to rapidly detect C. difficile in patient stool samples that can be adapted to point-of-care testing. (more…)
Author Interviews, Critical Care - Intensive Care - ICUs, Infections, Outcomes & Safety / 20.01.2014

Allan J. Walkey, M.D., M.Sc Boston University School of Medicine Pulmonary Center Boston, Massachusetts MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Allan J. Walkey, M.D., M.Sc Boston University School of Medicine Pulmonary Center Boston, Massachusetts MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Walkey: Thank you for the interest in our study. Current evidence-based treatments for severe sepsis (ie, infection+systemic inflammatory response+ end organ dysfunction) include specific processes of care rather specific therapeutics. These processes include early administration of antibiotics, early fluid resuscitation, and lung protective ventilation strategies. We hypothesized that hospitals with more ‘practice’ at treating patients with severe sepsis may have more effective care processes leading to improved patient outcomes. We examined more than 15,000 severe sepsis admissions from 124 US academic medical centers. Our findings supported our hypothesis. After adjustment for patient severity of illness and hospital characteristics, mortality in the highest quartile severe sepsis case volume hospitals was 22% and mortality in lowest severe sepsis case volume hospitals was 29%. The 7% absolute mortality difference would result in an estimated number needed to treat in high severe sepsis volume hospitals to prevent one death in low case volume hospitals of 14 (though we advise caution in interpretation of a number needed to treat in an observational study). Costs and length of stay were not different across levels of severe sepsis case volume. Results were robust to multiple subgroup and sensitivity analyses. (more…)
Author Interviews, Gastrointestinal Disease, Infections, NEJM, Vaccine Studies / 15.01.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with Eric S. Weintraub, M.P.H. Epidemiologist at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Mr. Weintraub: While current rotavirus vaccines were not associated with intussusception in large pre-licensure trials, recent post-licensure data (from international settings) suggest the possibility of a low risk of intussusception occurrence after receipt of monovalent rotavirus vaccination (RV1). We examined the risk of intussusception following RV1 vaccination in a U.S. population. In this study of more than 200,000 doses of RV1, a slight increased risk of intussusception was observed after vaccination, which should be considered in light of the benefits of preventing rotavirus associated illness. (more…)
Author Interviews, Geriatrics, MRSA / 11.01.2014

Courtney Reynolds, PhD Medical Scientist Training Program University of California Irvine, School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Courtney Reynolds, PhD Medical Scientist Training Program University of California Irvine, School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Reynolds: Our survey of factors influencing admission to 13 nursing homes in Orange County, California showed that MRSA carriers are denied admission more often than non-carriers, even after accounting for other important factors such as insurance status, required level of care and previous experience at the facility. In 80% of cases where MRSA carriage was responsible for denial of admission, nursing home administrators cited a lack of available single or cohort (MRSA only) rooms to accommodate these potential residents. (more…)
Author Interviews, Education, Exercise - Fitness, Infections / 11.01.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anna-Christina Lauer, MD Department of Audiology and Phoniatrics Charité-University Medicine Berlin Berlin, Germany MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Gross: We could show that the injury rates depend on the undergraduate medical training the students attended. This demonstrates that medical undergraduatue education, especially a hands-on training, is critical in the prevention of needlestick- and sharps injuries. Also the use of safety devices has proven to reduce injury rates significantly. Given the large size of our study we could not only comfirm that needlestick and sharps injuries are still a common problem, looking at an injury rate of about 20% per year, we also learned a lot about the accident circumstances: Most accidents occur at bedside during venepuncture and intravenous cannulation. The second most common setting is the operating room, where suturing and instrument transfers can lead to injuries. Since we analyzed official reports and the anonymous surveys at the same time we could affirm an underreporting rate of more than 50%. (more…)
Author Interviews, MRSA, OBGYNE / 10.01.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Andrea Parriott MPH, PhD Department of Epidemiology Fielding School of Public Health University of California Los Angeles

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Parriott: We wanted to know whether hospital and provider volume (i.e. the number of deliveries performed by each hospital and provider per quarter) and cesarean section rates were predictors of the risk of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection before discharge from the hospital (after delivering a baby). We did not find an association between any of these variables and risk of MRSA infection. (more…)
Author Interviews, CHEST, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Respiratory / 02.01.2014

Dr. Peter Lindenauer MD MS Director, Center for Quality of Care Research Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, MA, US MedicalResearch.com Interview Invitation with: Dr. Peter Lindenauer MD MS Director, Center for Quality of Care Research Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, MA, US MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: Among a cohort of 250,000 patients hospitalized for pneumonia at 347 US hospitals, those with a diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea were twice as likely to be intubated at the time of hospital admission than patients without sleep apnea. In addition, patients with sleep apnea had approximately 50% higher risk of needing to be transferred to the ICU after initial admission to a regular bed, and a 70% increased risk of requiring intubation later in the hospital stay. Patients with sleep apnea stayed longer in the hospital and incurred higher costs than those without sleep apnea. (more…)
Author Interviews, CHEST, Critical Care - Intensive Care - ICUs, Respiratory / 02.01.2014

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Simone Gattarello Vall d’Hebron Hospital, Critical Care Department Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona and Medicine Department, Spain MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Gattarello: The main findings from the present study are a 15% decrease in ICU mortality due to severe community-acquired pneumonia caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae in the last decade; moreover, several changes in antibiotic prescription practices were detected and an association between improved survival and both earlier antibiotic administration and increased combined antibiotic therapy were identified. In summary, in severe pneumococcal pneumonia combined antibiotic therapy and early antibiotic administration are associated with lower mortality. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections / 28.12.2013

Anders P. Hakansson, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Microbiology Department of Microbiology and Immunology Buffalo, NY 14214 MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anders P. Hakansson, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Microbiology Department of Microbiology and Immunology Buffalo, NY 14214 MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study: Dr. Hakansson: During the last couple of years we have shown that Streptococcus pneumoniae, a common colonizer of the nasopharynx in small children and elderly that sometimes cause respiratory infections such as middle ear infections and pneumonia, and Streptococcus pyogenes, a common colonizer of the oropharynx and also the cause of strep throat and skin infections, colonize us humans by forming biofilms; intricate bacterial communities. Biofilms have been studied for a long time but these specific organisms have not been shown to form biofilms during colonization until recently. As biofilms are much more resistant to environmental stresses and antibiotics, we were interested to see whether biofilms formed by these organisms could survive in the environment. The main reason for doing the experiments was that CDC guidelines indicate that spread of these organisms between individuals occur solely by inhalation of bacteria-containing droplets after coughing or sneezing. The risk of spread through surfaces has been estimated to be very low as laboratory experiments over the last 40 years have shown that these bacteria die very rapidly on surfaces. These studies were not, however, done with biofilm bacteria. Laura Marks in the laboratory with help from Ryan Reddinger therefore first tested how long biofilm bacteria could survive on plastic surfaces and found that rather than hours these bacteria were alive even after a month and could be used to successfully colonize animals. This made us interested in understanding if these bacteria survive better on hands, a common way to spread bacteria. And just as on inanimate surfaces, the biofilms survived much better on hands than bacteria grown in laboratory media. Based on these results, we were allowed to sample bacteria from stuffed toys, books, crib linens and others surfaces in a day care center early in the morning before the children arrived, and found both S. pneumoniae and S. pyogenes on these items. The results of the study indicate that these bacteria can survive in the environment longer than we have previously thought and may therefore play a role in spread between individuals. (more…)
Author Interviews, Flu - Influenza, NEJM, Pediatrics, Vaccine Studies / 15.12.2013

Ghassan Dbaibo, M.D., FAAP Professor and Vice-Chair for Research and Faculty Development Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine Head, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases Director, Center for Infectious Diseases Research Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics American University of Beirut Beirut, Lebanon MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ghassan Dbaibo, M.D., FAAP Professor and Vice-Chair for Research and Faculty Development Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine Head, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases Director, Center for Infectious Diseases Research Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics American University of Beirut Beirut, Lebanon MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Dbaibo:
  • 55% efficacy (95% CI 39–67%) for prevention of all influenza
  • These results are comparable with other estimates of efficacy and effectiveness for trivalent inactivated flu vaccines in this age group
  • 73% efficacy (97.5% CI 47–86%) for prevention of moderate-to-severe influenza
  • By preventing moderate-to-severe influenza, vaccination prevented the most clinically consequential outcomes of infection, reducing hospitalisations by 75% and medical visits by 69%.
  • Seroprotection rates of more than 95% for each of the four influenza strains in the vaccine
  • An acceptable safety and reactogenicity profile (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, Infections / 05.12.2013

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michael D. April, MD, DPhil San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium.Department Harvard Medical School The Medical Practice Evaluation Center MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of this study? Dr. April: Using a mathematical model, this study quantified the survival benefits associated with antiretroviral therapy to HIV-infected people in South Africa since 2004. Our results highlight the astounding benefits of treatment. In short, antiretroviral therapy has saved 2.8 million years of life in South Africa to date and is projected to save an additional 15.1 million years of life by 2030. (more…)
Author Interviews, Herpes Viruses, Infections, Nature, Pulmonary Disease / 21.11.2013

Gerard Nuovo MD Professor College of Medicine, The Ohio State University Satellite Laboratory, Ohio State Univ Comprehensive Cancer Center Phylogeny Inc, Powell, Ohio MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Gerard Nuovo MD Professor College of Medicine, The Ohio State University Satellite Laboratory, Ohio State Univ Comprehensive Cancer Center Phylogeny Inc, Powell, Ohio MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Nuovo: The main finding of the study was that idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis was strongly associated with an infection by a herpesvirus. The data that supported this main finding included:
  • 1) detection of the viral DNA by in situ hybridization in each case of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and in none of the controls;
  • 2) the localization of the viral DNA to the nucleus of the cell that orchestrates IPF, the regenerating epithelial cell (herpes viruses localize to the nucleus of the target cell);
  • 3) the demonstration that the viral DNA co-localized with "pirated proteins" that the virus makes during productive infection (these were IL-17. cyclin D, dihydrofolate reductase, and thymidylate synthase); this combination of proteins are rarely if ever co-expressed in lung disease and their co-expression per se was highly suggestive of a viral infection;
  • 4) the demonstration by RTPCR that the cyclin D RNA in IPF comes from the virus and not the human cells;
  • 5) the recognition that this family of herpesviruses (called gammaherpesvirus) causes IPF in other animals including horses, mice, and donkeys;
  • 6) the cloning of part of the gene of the virus from a clinical IPF sample that showed 100% homology to the published sequence of the likely viral pathogen - herpesvirus saimiri. (more…)