Authors:Raimond Lugert, Uwe Groß, Wycliffe O. Masanta, Gunter Linsel, Astrid Heutelbeck, and Andreas E. Zautner
Psittacosis is a zoonotic infectious disease that is caused by Chlamydophila psittaci. To determine the occupational risk of getting the infection, we investigated the seroprevalence of C. psittaci among employees of two German duck farms and two slaughterhouses according to their level of exposure to the pathogen during the years 2010, 2007, and 2004. In summary, we found low seroprevalence (≈ 8%) throughout the study population almost irrespective of the duty of a given worker. Surprisingly, in 2010, the anti-C. psittaci-specific antibody prevalence in the group of slaughterer (38.9%) was significantly increased in comparison to the non-exposed employees (p = 0.00578). This indicates that individuals in the surrounding of slaughterhouses exposed especially to aerosols containing C. psittaci elementary bodies bear a greater occupational risk of getting infected.
Authors:B. Tajthi, R. Horváth, Sz. Mizser, D. D. Nagy, and B. Tóthmérész
Urban areas have been growing radically worldwide, causing considerable changes in biodiversity of natural habitats. In floodplain forests, we studied the effects of urbanization on ground-dwelling spider assemblages along a rural–suburban–urban gradient in Hungary. We tested three traditional hypotheses (intermediate disturbance hypothesis, habitat specialist hypothesis and hygrophilous species hypothesis) and two novel expectations (shade-preferring species hypothesis, and disturbance sensitive species hypothesis) on spiders. We found that the total number of species was higher in the suburban habitat than in rural and urban ones, supporting the intermediate disturbance hypothesis. We found a decrease in the species richness of forest specialist and shade-preferring species along the urbanization gradient. We found that the number of hygrophilous and disturbance sensitive species was the lowest in the urban habitat. The spider assemblages of the rural and suburban habitats were clearly separated from the assemblages of urban habitats. Based on our findings we emphasize that low and moderate intensity of forest management contributes to the preservation of the local species richness in floodplain forests.
Authors:Cosme Alvarado-Esquivel, Yazmin del Rosario Rico-Almochantaf, Jesús Hernández-Tinoco, Gerardo Quiñones-Canales, Luis Francisco Sánchez-Anguiano, Jorge Torres-González, Björn Schott, Oliver Liesenfeld, and Ildiko Rita Dunay
Little is known about the association of Toxoplasma gondii infection and neurological disorders. We performed a case-control study with 344 patients with neurological diseases and 344 neurologically healthy age- and gender-matched subjects. Sera of participants were analyzed for anti-T. gondii IgG and IgM antibodies using commercially available immunoassays. Anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies were detected in 25 (7.3%) cases and in 35 (10.2%) controls (odds ratio [OR] = 0.69; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.40–1.18; P = 0.17). Anti-T. gondii IgM antibodies were found in 5 (14.3%) of the 25 IgG seropositive cases and in 13 (37.1%) of the 35 IgG seropositive controls (P = 0.15). Anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies were found in 8 (3.8%) of 213 female cases and in 23 (10.8%) of 213 female controls (OR = 0.32; 95% CI: 0.14–0.73; P = 0.005); and in 17 (13.0%) of 131 male cases and in 12 (9.2%) of 131 male controls (P = 0.32). No direct association between IgG seropositivity and specific neurological disorders was detected. We found no support for a role of latent T. gondii infection in the risk for neurological disorders in this setting. With respect to specific neurological disorders, further studies using larger patient cohorts will be required.
Authors:Ana Beatriz Dein Terra Mota Ribeiro, Markus M. Heimesaat, and Stefan Bereswill
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections cause severe CD4+ T cell depletion leading to chronic inflammation and immune activation, impaired barrier function, and microbial translocation. Even under effective antiretroviral therapy, these processes persist, leading to gut microbiome dysbiosis and disturbance of microbiome–host homeostasis. This systematic review aims at analyzing how gut microbiome and host immune system influence each other during HIV pathogenesis. An online search applying the PubMed database was conducted. The number of total results (n = 35) was narrowed down to 5 relevant studies focusing on the interaction between the host and gut microbiome, whereas strict exclusion criteria were applied, thereby assuring that no other comorbidities impacted study results. Our analyses revealed that gut microbiome diversity correlated positively with CD4+ T cell counts and negatively with microbial translocation markers. However, quantitative changes in bacterial richness did not consistently correlate with the numbers of metabolically active bacterial populations. Despite the reported increase in potentially pathogenic bacteria and, conversely, decrease in protective populations, the gut microbiota exhibited immune-modulating qualities given that mucosal inflammatory sequelae were dampened by decreasing pro-inflammatory and accelerating anti-inflammatory cytokine responses. Future research is needed to further elucidate these findings, to gain a deeper insight into host–microbiota interactions and to develop novel therapeutic strategies.
Authors:Ali Konaté, René Dembélé, Nathalie K. Guessennd, Fernique Konan Kouadio, Innocent Kouamé Kouadio, Mohamed Baguy Ouattara, Wendpoulomdé A. D. Kaboré, Assèta Kagambèga, Haoua Cissé, Hadiza Bawa Ibrahim, Touwendsida Serge Bagré, Alfred S. Traoré, and Nicolas Barro
The emergence and persistence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) diarrheagenic Escherichia coli (DEC) causing acute diarrhea is a major public health challenge in developing countries. The aim of this study was to evaluate the resistance phenotypes of DEC isolated from stool samples collected from children less than 5 years of age with acute diarrhea living in Ouagadougou/Burkina Faso. From August 2013 to October 2015, this study was carried out on 31 DEC strains of our study conducted in “Centre Médical avec Antenne Chirurgicale (CMA)” Paul VI and CMA of Schiphra. DEC were isolated and identified by standard microbiological methods and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method was used to further characterize them. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was done based on the disk diffusion method. DEC isolates were high resistant to tetracycline (83.9%), amoxicillin (77.4%), amoxicillin clavulanic acid (77.4%), piperacillin (64.5%), and colistin sulfate (61.3%). The most resistant phenotype represented was the extended spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) phenotype (67.7%). Aminoglycosides were 100% active on enteroinvasive E. coli (EIEC) and enterohemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC). All the DEC isolates exhibited absolute (100%) sensitivity to ciprofloxacin. Monitoring and studying the resistance profile of DEC to antibiotics are necessary to guide probabilistic antibiotic therapy, especially in pediatric patients.
Authors:Luis Antonio Bautista-Hernández, José Luis Gómez-Olivares, Beatriz Buentello-Volante, and Victor Manuel Bautista-de Lucio
Fibroblasts are present in all tissues but predominantly in connective tissues. Some of their functions include contractility, locomotion, collagen and elastin fiber production, and the regulation and degradation of the extracellular matrix. Also, fibroblasts act as sentinels to produce inflammatory mediators in response to several microorganisms. There is evidence that fibroblasts can synthesize toll-like receptors (TLRs), antimicrobial peptides, proinflammatory cytokines, chemokines, and growth factors, which are important molecules involved in innate immune response against microorganisms. Fibroblasts can express TLRs (TLR-1 to TLR-10) to sense microbial components or microorganisms. They can synthesize antimicrobial peptides, such as LL-37, defensins hBD-1, and hBD-2, molecules that perform antimicrobial activity. Also, they can produce proinflammatory cytokines, such as TNFα, INFγ, IL-6, IL-12p70, and IL-10; other chemokines, such as CCL1, CCL2, CCL5, CXCL1, CXCL8, CXCL10, and CX3CL1; and the growth factors granulocyte/macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) and granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) to induce and recruit inflammatory cells. According to their immunological attributes, we can conclude that fibroblasts are sentinel cells that recognize pathogens, induce the recruitment of inflammatory cells via cytokines and growth factors, and release antimicrobial peptides, complying with the characteristics of real sentinels.
Authors:Elizabeth M. Marlowe, David Hardy, Mark Krevolin, Peter Gohl, Alexander Bertram, Rodney Arcenas, Britta Seiverth, Tanja Schneider, and Oliver Liesenfeld
We compared the analytical and clinical performance of cobas® CT/NG for use on the cobas® 6800/8800 Systems with the cobas® 4800 CT/NG Test from urogenital and extragenital specimens in over 12,000 specimens from both male and female subjects in Germany and the United States. The analytical sensitivity was ≤40 EB/ml for Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) and ≤1 CFU/ml for Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG). Using clinical specimens, the overall percent agreement with the cobas® 4800 CT/NG Test was >98.5%. Across urogenital specimens, there were 93 discrepant specimens; 76 (93.8%) of 81 CT discrepant specimens were 6800+/4800− and 10 (83.3%) of 12 NG discrepant specimens were 6800+/4800−. Sequencing verified CT results for 45 (61.6%) of 73 samples positive by 6800 and 1 (20%) of 5 positive by 4800. Similarly, 7 (70.0%) of 10 NG samples positive by 6800 and 1 of 2 positive by 4800 were confirmed by sequencing. Among discrepant extragenital specimens (all 6800+/4800−), 7 (50%) of 14 oropharyngeal and 23 (76.7%) of 30 anorectal CT discordant samples were confirmed as CT positive by sequencing; all 8 anorectal and 20 (90.9%) of 22 oropharyngeal NG discordant results were also confirmed as NG positive. In conclusion, cobas® CT/NG for use on the cobas® 6800/8800 Systems provides high-throughput automated solutions for sexually transmitted infection (STI) screening programs.
Authors:Markus M. Heimesaat, Gernot Reifenberger, Viktoria Vicena, Anita Illes, Gabriella Horvath, Andrea Tamas, Balazs D. Fulop, Stefan Bereswill, and Dora Reglodi
Pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypetide (PACAP) constitutes a neuropeptide that is widely distributed in the host exerting essential cytoprotective properties, whereas PACAP−/− mice display increased susceptibility to distinct immunopathological conditions. The orchestrated interplay between the gut microbiota and the host is pivotal in immune homeostasis and resistance to disease. Potential pertubations of the intestinal microbiota in PACAP−/− mice, however, have not been addressed so far. For the first time, we performed a comprehensive survey of the intestinal microbiota composition in PACAP−/− and wildtype (WT) mice starting 2 weeks postpartum until 18 months of age applying quantitative culture-independent techniques. Fecal enterobacteria and enterococci were lower in PACAP−/− than WT mice aged 1 month and ≥6 months, respectively. Whereas Mouse Intestinal Bacteroides were slightly higher in PACAP−/− versus WT mice aged 1 and 6 months, this later in life held true for Bacteroides/Prevotella spp. (≥12 months) and lactobacilli (>15 months of age). Strikingly, health-beneficial bifidobacteria were virtually absent in the intestines of PACAP−/− mice, even when still breastfed. In conclusion, PACAP deficiency is accompanied by distinct changes in fecal microbiota composition with virtually absent bifidobacteria as a major hallmark that might be linked to increased susceptibility to disease.
Authors:Cosme Alvarado-Esquivel, Ada A. Sandoval-Carrillo, Fernando Vazquez-Alaniz, José M. Salas-Pacheco, Jesús Hernández-Tinoco, Luis Francisco Sánchez-Anguiano, and Elizabeth Irasema Antuna-Salcido
It is not clear whether infection with cytomegalovirus (CMV) is associated with hypertensive disorders in pregnant women. Through a case-control study design, 146 women suffering from hypertensive disorders in pregnancy (cases) and 146 age-matched normotensive pregnant women (controls) were examined for the presence of anti-CMV IgG and IgM antibodies with enzyme-linked immunoassays. IgM seropositive samples were further assayed by enzyme-linked fluorescent assay (ELFA).
Anti-CMV IgG antibodies were found in 138 (94.5%) controls and in 136 (93.2%) cases (odds ratio [OR] = 0.78; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.30–2.05; P = 0.62). High (>18 IU/ml) levels of anti-CMV IgG antibodies were found in 37.7% of the 138 seropositive controls and in 34.6% of the 136 seropositive cases (OR = 0.87; 95% CI: 0.53–1.43; P = 0.59). Anti-CMV IgM antibodies were found in 1 (0.7%) of the controls but in none of the cases using ELFA (P = 1.0). Seropositivity to CMV was not associated with a previous preeclampsia and was similar among cases regardless their mean systolic and diastolic blood pressures, and mean arterial blood pressure.
No serological evidence of an association between CMV infection and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy was found. Further research to elucidate the role of CMV in hypertensive disorders in pregnancy should be conducted.
Authors:Laura von Brzezinski, Paula Säring, Peter Landgraf, Clemens Cammann, Ulrike Seifert, and Daniela C. Dieterich
Application of the proteasome inhibitor Bortezomib for the treatment of haematopoietic malignancies such as multiple myeloma significantly improves the average overall survival of patients. However, one of the most severe side effects is the development of peripheral neuropathies caused by neurotoxic effects of Bortezomib limiting its therapeutic efficacy. With ONX-0914 a specific inhibitor of the β5i (LMP7)-immunosubunit containing proteasomes was developed that targets exclusively the proteasome subtypes mainly expressed in immune cells including B lymphocytes as the origin of multiple myeloma. Furthermore, immunosubunitspecific inhibitors have been shown to be promising tools for the therapy of autoimmune disorders. In the presented study, we analysed the concentration-dependent impact of both inhibitors on primary neurons regarding survival rate, morphological changes, and overall viability. Our results clearly demonstrate that ONX-0914, compared to Bortezomib, is less neurotoxic suggesting its potential as a putative antineoplastic drug and as a candidate for the treatment of autoimmune disorders affecting the peripheral and/or central nervous system.