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To stop transmission of hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections in association with myocardial perfusion imaging (MPI) at a cardiology clinic.
Outbreak investigation and quasispecies analysis of HCV hypervariable region 1 genome.
Outpatient cardiology clinic.
Patients undergoing MPI.
Case patients met definitions for HBV or HCV infection. Cases were identified through surveillance registry cross-matching against clinic records and serological screening. Observations of clinic practices were performed.
During 2012–2014, 7 cases of HCV and 4 cases of HBV occurred in 4 distinct clusters among patients at a cardiology clinic. Among 3 case patients with HCV infection who had MPI on June 25, 2014, 2 had 98.48% genetic identity of HCV RNA. Among 4 case patients with HCV infection who had MPI on March 13, 2014, 3 had 96.96%–99.24% molecular identity of HCV RNA. Also, 2 clusters of 2 patients each with HBV infection had MPI on March 7, 2012, and December 4, 2014. Clinic staff reused saline vials for >1 patient. No infection control breaches were identified at the compounding pharmacy that supplied the clinic. Patients seen in clinic through March 27, 2015, were encouraged to seek testing for HBV, HCV, and human immunodeficiency virus. The clinic switched to all single-dose medications and single-use intravenous flushes on March 27, 2015, and no further cases were identified.
This prolonged healthcare-associated outbreak of HBV and HCV was most likely related to breaches in injection safety. Providers should follow injection safety guidelines in all practice settings.
In recent years, a variety of efforts have been made in political science to enable, encourage, or require scholars to be more open and explicit about the bases of their empirical claims and, in turn, make those claims more readily evaluable by others. While qualitative scholars have long taken an interest in making their research open, reflexive, and systematic, the recent push for overarching transparency norms and requirements has provoked serious concern within qualitative research communities and raised fundamental questions about the meaning, value, costs, and intellectual relevance of transparency for qualitative inquiry. In this Perspectives Reflection, we crystallize the central findings of a three-year deliberative process—the Qualitative Transparency Deliberations (QTD)—involving hundreds of political scientists in a broad discussion of these issues. Following an overview of the process and the key insights that emerged, we present summaries of the QTD Working Groups’ final reports. Drawing on a series of public, online conversations that unfolded at www.qualtd.net, the reports unpack transparency’s promise, practicalities, risks, and limitations in relation to different qualitative methodologies, forms of evidence, and research contexts. Taken as a whole, these reports—the full versions of which can be found in the Supplementary Materials—offer practical guidance to scholars designing and implementing qualitative research, and to editors, reviewers, and funders seeking to develop criteria of evaluation that are appropriate—as understood by relevant research communities—to the forms of inquiry being assessed. We dedicate this Reflection to the memory of our coauthor and QTD working group leader Kendra Koivu.1
Pandemics are imbued with the politics of bordering. For centuries, border closures and restrictions on foreign travelers have been the most persistent and pervasive means by which states have responded to global health crises. The ubiquity of these policies is not driven by any clear scientific consensus about their utility in the face of myriad pandemic threats. Instead, we show they are influenced by public opinion and preexisting commitments to invest in the symbols and structures of state efforts to control their borders, a concept we call border orientation. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, border orientation was already generally on the rise worldwide. This trend has made it convenient for governments to “contain” the virus by externalizing it, rather than taking costly but ultimately more effective domestic mitigation measures. We argue that the pervasive use of external border controls in the face of the coronavirus reflects growing anxieties about border security in the modern international system. To a great extent, fears relating to border security have become a resource in domestic politics—a finding that does not bode well for designing and implementing effective public health policy.
Prolonged survival of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) on environmental surfaces and personal protective equipment may lead to these surfaces transmitting this pathogen to others. We sought to determine the effectiveness of a pulsed-xenon ultraviolet (PX-UV) disinfection system in reducing the load of SARS-CoV-2 on hard surfaces and N95 respirators.
Chamber slides and N95 respirator material were directly inoculated with SARS-CoV-2 and were exposed to different durations of PX-UV.
For hard surfaces, disinfection for 1, 2, and 5 minutes resulted in 3.53 log10, >4.54 log10, and >4.12 log10 reductions in viral load, respectively. For N95 respirators, disinfection for 5 minutes resulted in >4.79 log10 reduction in viral load. PX-UV significantly reduced SARS-CoV-2 on hard surfaces and N95 respirators.
With the potential to rapidly disinfectant environmental surfaces and N95 respirators, PX-UV devices are a promising technology to reduce environmental and personal protective equipment bioburden and to enhance both healthcare worker and patient safety by reducing the risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2.
Summary: In this paper we build on work investigating the feasibility of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing in emergency departments (EDs), estimating the prevalence of hepatitis B, C and HIV infections among persons attending two inner-London EDs, identifying factors associated with testing positive in an ED. We also undertook molecular characterisation to look at the diversity of the viruses circulating in these individuals, and the presence of clinically significant mutations which impact on treatment and control.
Blood-borne virus (BBV) testing in non-traditional settings is feasible, with emergency departments (ED) potentially effective at reaching vulnerable and underserved populations. We investigated the feasibility of BBV testing within two inner-London EDs. Residual samples from biochemistry for adults (⩾18 years) attending The Royal Free London Hospital (RFLH) or the University College London Hospital (UCLH) ED between January and June 2015 were tested for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)Ag/Ab, anti-hepatitis C (HCV) and HBsAg. PCR and sequence analysis were conducted on reactive samples. Sero-prevalence among persons attending RFH and UCLH with residual samples (1287 and 1546), respectively, were 1.1% and 1.0% for HBsAg, 1.6% and 2.3% for anti-HCV, 0.9% and 1.6% for HCV RNA, and 1.3% and 2.2% for HIV. For RFH, HBsAg positivity was more likely among persons of black vs. white ethnicity (odds ratio 9.08; 95% confidence interval 2.72–30), with anti-HCV positivity less likely among females (0.15, 95% CI 0.04–0.50). For UCLH, HBsAg positivity was more likely among non-white ethnicity (13.34, 95% CI 2.20–80.86 (Asian); 8.03, 95% CI 1.12–57.61 (black); and 8.11, 95% CI 1.13–58.18 (other/mixed)). Anti-HCV positivity was more likely among 36–55 year olds vs. ⩾56 years (7.69, 95% CI 2.24–26.41), and less likely among females (0.24, 95% CI 0.09–0.65). Persons positive for HIV-markers were more likely to be of black vs. white ethnicity (4.51, 95% CI 1.63–12.45), and less likely to have one ED attendance (0.39, 95% CI 0.17–0.88), or female (0.12, 95% CI 0.04–0.42). These results indicate that BBV-testing in EDs is feasible, providing a basis for further studies to explore provider and patient acceptability, referral into care and cost-effectiveness.
Evaluation of post-operative donor site disability remains unaddressed in radial forearm free flap cases. This study aimed to assess donor site dysfunction following radial forearm free flap harvest using validated general, disease-specific and site-specific disability questionnaires.
In this retrospective case series of 24 patients at a tertiary academic medical centre, patients were assessed using the Short Form 36 Health Survey, Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment questionnaire, and Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire. One-sample z-tests were performed, comparing means of the cohort to controls.
Compared to population controls, the cohort had higher mean scores for the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire (18.22 vs 10.1, p < 0.01), and Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment questionnaire bothersome index (21.44 vs 13.77, p = 0.04), and a lower mean score for the Short Form 36 Health Survey physical component (38.88 vs 50, p < 0.01), indicating a greater disability for the cohort compared to controls.
Radial forearm free flap harvest causes significant long-term donor site disability in head and neck tumour patients. The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire is a concise tool for measuring this dysfunction.
Exposure to the endocrine disruptor bisphenol A (BPA) is ubiquitous and associated with health abnormalities that persist in subsequent generations. However, transgenerational effects of BPA on metabolic health are not widely studied. In a maternal C57BL/6J mice (F0) exposure model using BPA doses that are relevant to human exposure levels (10 μg/kg/day, LowerB; 10 mg/kg/day, UpperB), we showed male- and dose-specific effects on pancreatic islets of the first (F1) and second generation (F2) offspring relative to controls (7% corn oil diet; control). In this study, we determined the transgenerational effects (F3) of BPA on metabolic health and pancreatic islets in our model. Adult F3 LowerB and UpperB male offspring had increased body weight relative to Controls, however glucose tolerance was similar in the three groups. F3 LowerB, but not UpperB, males had reduced β-cell mass and smaller islets which was associated with increased glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. Similar to F1 and F2 BPA male offspring, staining for markers of T-cells and macrophages (CD3 and F4/80) was increased in pancreas of F3 LowerB and UpperB male offspring, which was associated with changes in cytokine levels. In contrast to F3 BPA males, LowerB and UpperB female offspring had comparable body weight, glucose tolerance and insulin secretion as Controls. Thus, maternal BPA exposure resulted in fewer metabolic defects in F3 than F1 and F2 offspring, and these were sex- and dose-specific.
This study aimed to evaluate the presence of subjective post-operative donor site morbidity after fibula free flap reconstruction in head and neck cancer patients, utilising three validated instruments: the 36-item Short Form Health Survey, the Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment questionnaire and the Lower Limb Core Scale.
In this retrospective study, all head and neck cancer patients who underwent fibula free flap reconstruction between January 2009 and July 2014 were identified. All questionnaires and their respective subcomponents were scored.
Twenty-one cases were included. Patients were found to have a higher Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment bothersome index (22.42 vs 13.77, p = 0.03), a lower Short Form 36 Health Survey Physical Component Summary score (42.44 vs 50, p < 0.01) and a decreased Lower Limb Core Scale score (47.08 vs 90.52, p < 0.01), compared to US population norms. The Short Form 36 Health Survey Mental Component Summary scores and Short Musculoskeletal Function Assessment function index failed to demonstrate significant differences. Gender affected overall disability.
In this study, significant long-term disability was demonstrated after fibular flap reconstruction, as measured by the Lower Limb Core Scale.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: A small molecule therapy is within reach to treat a molecular mechanism known to result in thousands of fatal diseases. For 10% of patients with a genetic disease, a nonsense/STOP mutation/premature termination codon (PTC) is the underlying cause of their malady. PTCs prematurely stop protein synthesis and yield truncated proteins. Truncated proteins typically provide little to no proper function or activity and are rapidly degraded; thus, disease is imminent. Recent work has demonstrated that small molecules including aminoglycosides can cause the ribosome to readthrough these PTCs. Thus, PTC readthrough with small molecules is a very attractive approach for treating diseases caused by PTCs. Small molecules that promote readthrough act on the ribosome and induce a ribosomal conformational change. In this conformation, the PTC is not recognized by the translational machinery and an amino acid is incorporated into the growing peptide chain, thus protein synthesis continues and does not stop. The use of a single small molecule to readthrough various PTC mutations has been repeatedly effective for in vitro studies and some of these have progressed to clinical trials. Although there has been success in defining these small molecules, the field has discovered that every PTC is unique and likely requires a different small molecule. Thus, developing a cell culture model to test read-through of Lafora PTCs and the functionality of the protein product is the first step to developing a readthrough therapy for a LD. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: Method for in vitro quantification of readthrough: 24 hours before transfection, HEK293 cells were split in 6-well plates. On the following day, approximately 60% confluence, the cells were transiently transfected with the WT or PTC mutated constructs using Polyethylenimine HCl MAX. Cells were transfected with a total amount of 0.35 μg DNA/well and 2 μl Polyethylenimine HCl MAX/well. Four hours later, the transfection medium was removed and replaced with fresh medium, without streptomycin and penicillin. The fresh media contained gentamicin diluted to the indicated concentration per well. Fresh gentamicin-containing medium was replaced after 24 hours. After 48 hours, lysates were collected in 100 μL mRIPA supplemented with protease inhibitors for each construct. The lysates were run on a western blot and the N-terminal was probed with anti-FLAG. A malachite green phosphatase assay to measure inorganic phosphate release from phospho-glucans, that is glycogen or LBs. Glycogen is used in this laforin bioassay as the biologically relevant substrate in order to determine the specific activity of the readthrough products. All reactions are incubated for 40 minute the absorbance is measured at 620 nm and the pmoles of phosphate released/min/nmol protein was calculated using a standard curve. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: HEK293 cells were transfected with MeCP2 R241X, laforin R241X, or laforin WT NT-FLAG construct, treated with different concentrations of gentamicin for 48 hours, and laforin levels were assessed by Western analysis with anti-FLAG. HEK293 cells were transfected with WT laforin or a laforin PTC CT-FLAG construct, treated with different concentrations of gentamicin for 48 hours, and laforin levels were assessed by Western analysis with anti-FLAG. B. Quantification of read-through for PTC experiments. *p-value≤0.001. #p-value≤0.001. Schematic of laforin bioassay. The assay has been performed with human and mouse tissue as well as cultured cells. B. Laforin bioassay results using laforin from PTC experiment. **p-value≤0.001. *p-value≤0.01. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: Our results suggest that gentamicin is not only responsible for inducing readthrough of the PTC mutations, but also for promoting translation of fully functional laforin. Therefore, our in vitro system for the analysis of PTC readthrough of laforin will be useful for determining which PTC mutations are suppressible with gentamicin or other small molecules, in what quantities laforin is recovered from PTC mutations, and if the protein products possess the appropriate enzymatic function.
Good education requires student experiences that deliver lessons about practice as well as theory and that encourage students to work for the public good—especially in the operation of democratic institutions (Dewey 1923; Dewy 1938). We report on an evaluation of the pedagogical value of a research project involving 23 colleges and universities across the country. Faculty trained and supervised students who observed polling places in the 2016 General Election. Our findings indicate that this was a valuable learning experience in both the short and long terms. Students found their experiences to be valuable and reported learning generally and specifically related to course material. Postelection, they also felt more knowledgeable about election science topics, voting behavior, and research methods. Students reported interest in participating in similar research in the future, would recommend other students to do so, and expressed interest in more learning and research about the topics central to their experience. Our results suggest that participants appreciated the importance of elections and their study. Collectively, the participating students are engaged and efficacious—essential qualities of citizens in a democracy.