Author Interviews, Infections, Lyme, NEJM / 02.07.2013 Interview with: Sam R. Telford III, ScD Department of Infectious Disease and Global Health, Tufts University, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, 200 Westboro Road, North Grafton, MA Borrelia miyamotoi Infection Presenting as Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis: A Case Report What are the main findings of the study? Answer: The study presents two additional cases of BMD (Borrelia miyamotoi disease) that add to our knowledge of the spectrum of illness of this recently recognized zoonosis. Our report of the North American index case in NEJM in January 2013 described a case-patient who was elderly and immunocompromised and it was not clear whether that case was just very unusual. With our Annals report, we describe cases in immune-intact individuals and suggest that cases of BMD may have been under our noses all along, just presumptively diagnosed as HGA and successfully treated with doxycycline with no followup (e.g., lab confirmation of diagnosis of HGA Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis). Hence, individuals presenting with fever, headache, myalgia, and show leukopenia and elevated LFTs may have either HGA or BMD and confirmatory testing should be done accordingly. It should be noted that all tick borne diseases are clinical diagnoses and treatment of an acute case should not depend on "lab tests". Both these infections are effectively managed by oral doxycycline, hence those with these signs and symptoms might be empirically treated with doxycyline, which would be important in areas where RMSF and tularemia (which also produce leukopenia and elevated LFTs) co-occur with deer tick -transmitted infections such as Lyme disease; waiting for "lab tests" to confirm RMSF or tularemia might lead to a negative outcome. RMSF and tularemia are the most dangerous of the tick American tick borne diseases, although I would certainly place the very rare deer tick virus and Powassan virus in the same category. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, Lyme / 27.06.2013 Interview with: Xin Li, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Veterinary Biosciences The Ohio State University 344 Veterinary Medicine Academic Building Columbus, OH 43210 What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Xin Li : Antibody responses to borrelial antigens that are primarily expressed during the tick phase the spirochetes’ life cycle are common in American patients with Lyme arthritis, a late-stage manifestation of Lyme borreliosis, but are rare in American patients with early-stage infection or European patients with early- or late-stage infection. (more…)
HIV, Infections, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 21.06.2013 Interview with Dr. H. Irene Hall, PhD Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, CDC 1600 Clifton Road, MS E-47, Atlanta, GA 30333 What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Hall: Our research finds that, across all populations, far too few Americans with HIV receive the care they need to stay healthy and reduce risk of transmission. According to our research, gaps in care are the largest among African Americans and young people. Moving forward, improving care for all HIV-infected people will be critical to achieving the goal of an AIDS-free generation in America. More specifically, some of the key findings of the study include:
  • Overall, only a quarter of all Americans with HIV have a suppressed viral load – meaning the level of HIV in their bodies is low enough to stay healthy and dramatically reduce the chance of transmitting to others.
  • By race/ethnicity, African-Americans and Hispanics or Latinos are less likely to be aware of their infection compared to whites.
  • By age, younger Americans are less likely to be in ongoing care and have a suppressed viral load; HIV care and viral suppression generally improved with age. For example:
  • Fifteen percent of those aged 25-34 were virally suppressed, compared to 36 percent of those aged 55-64.
  • In terms of ongoing care, 28 percent of those 25-34 years old were retained in care, compared to 46 percent of those aged 55-64. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Hospital Acquired, Infections, Outcomes & Safety / 19.06.2013

Marin L. Schweizer Ph.D. Assistant Professor University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, Iowa City, IA, USA Interview with: Marin L. Schweizer Ph.D. Assistant Professor University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine Iowa City, IA, USA What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Schweizer: A clinical bundle that includes nasally screening cardiac and orthopedic surgery patients for S. aureus (both methicillin-resistant S. aureus and methicillin-susceptible S. aureus), decolonizing carriers, and changing antibiotic prophylaxis for MRSA carriers, can significantly reduce the number of gram-positive surgical site infections, S. aureus surgical site infections and MRSA surgical site infections. (more…)
Author Interviews, C. difficile, Infections, Nutrition, Probiotics / 07.06.2013 eInterview with: Dr. Reena Pattani MD Department of Medicine St. Michael’s Hospital 30 Bond Street, Toronto ON M5B 1W8 What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Pattani: We performed a meta-analysis of 16 studies that assessed the effectiveness of probiotics administered concurrently with antibiotics compared to the use of antibiotics alone. The use of probiotics among patients in these trials reduced the risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhea by almost 40% and decreased the rate of Clostridium difficile infection by 63%. On subgroup analysis, the reduction remained statistically significant for the subgroups of good quality trials, trials in which a primarily Lactobacillus-based regimen was used, and those studies which had a follow-up period of less than 4 weeks. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, Lancet, Vaccine Studies / 31.05.2013 eInterview with: Fengcai Zhu Deputy Director of the Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Jiangsu provincial center for disease prevention and control

Fengcai Zhu

Deputy Director of the Jiangsu Provincial Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Jiangsu provincial center for disease prevention and control Editor's Note: HFMD = Hand Foot and Mouth Disease Hand Foot and Mouth Disease What are the main findings of the study? Answer: From this trial, the inactivated alum-adjuvant EV71 vaccine showed a good protection for both the EV71-associated HFMD and EV71-associated disease. The vaccine gave 90% protection against clinical EV71-associated HFMD and 80.4% against EV71-associated disease (including neurological complications) for at least 12 months. The safety profile and immunogenicity of this vaccine is proved to be clinical acceptable. We also proposed a titre (1:32) of neutralization antibody as surrogate of protection against EV71-associated disease.


Author Interviews, HIV / 27.04.2013 eInterview with Dr. Sara Gianella Weibel, M.D. Center For Aids Research (CFAR) University of California San Diego La Jolla CA, 92093-0679 Email: What are the main findings of the study? Answer: In this study we evaluated a large number of seminal samples from HIV-infected sexually active gay men treated with antiretroviral therapy (ART) using an extensive battery of tests for viral and bacterial co-infections. Around 10% of enrolled subjects presented detectable levels of HIV RNA in semen despite being on suppressive ART. (more…)
Author Interviews, Infections, PLoS / 11.03.2013 Author Interview: Dr. Donald K. Milton, MD, Dr.P.H dr_donalk_k_milton Dr. Donald K. Milton, MD, Dr.P.H Professor and Director Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health University of Maryland What are the main findings of the study? Dr. Milton: We found that total viral copies detected by molecular methods were 8.8 times more numerous in fine (≤5 µm) than in coarse (>5 µm) aerosol particles and that the fine particles from cases with the highest total number of viral RNA copies contained infectious virus. Surgical masks reduced the overall number of RNA copies by 3.4 fold. (more…)