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author:("boiteux, A.")
1.  Keep an Ear Out for Francisella tularensis: Otomastoiditis Cases after Canyoneering 
We report here three unusual cases of otomastoiditis due to Francisella tularensis, complicated by cervical abscesses and persistent hearing loss, plus facial paralysis for one patient. Intriguingly, the three patients had practiced canyoneering independently in the same French river, between 2009 and 2014, several days before clinical symptoms onset. The results point out that fresh water exposure may be a potential contamination route for tularemia. Besides, due to the frequent complications and sequelae, we believe that F. tularensis should be considered as a possible etiology in case of otitis media, failure of the conventional antibiotic treatment, and suspicious exposure of the bacteria.
PMCID: PMC4776157  PMID: 26973838
Francisella tularensis; otitis media; otomastoiditis; canyoneering; France
2.  Nontuberculous Mycobacteria: An Underestimated Cause of Bioprosthetic Valve Infective Endocarditis 
Open Forum Infectious Diseases  2015;2(2):ofv047.
From 2010 to 2013, 5 cases of nontuberculous mycobacteria infective endocarditis (IE), exclusively from bioprosthesis, were diagnosed in three hospitals out of 370 blood culture-negative-suspected IE. The porcine origin of this underestimated etiology is questioned.
Background. Atypical mycobacteria, or nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM), have been barely reported as infective endocarditis (IE) agents.
Methods. From January 2010 to December 2013, cardiac valve samples sent to our laboratory as cases of blood culture-negative suspected IE were analyzed by 16S rDNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR). When positive for NTM, hsp PCR allowed species identification. Demographic, clinical, echocardiographic, histopathological, and Ziehl-Neelsen staining data were then collected.
Results. Over the study period, 6 of 370 cardiac valves (belonging to 5 patients in 3 hospitals) were positive for Mycobacterium chelonae (n = 5) and Mycobacterium lentiflavum (n = 1) exclusively on bioprosthetic material. The 5 patients presented to the hospital for heart failure without fever 7.1–18.9 months (median 13.1 months) after biological prosthetic valve implantation. Echocardiography revealed paravalvular regurgitation due to prosthesis dehiscence in all patients. Histopathological examination of the explanted material revealed inflammatory infiltrates in all specimens, 3 of which were associated with giant cells. Gram staining and conventional cultures remained negative, whereas Ziehl-Neelsen staining showed acid-fast bacilli in all patients. Allergic etiology was ruled out by antiporcine immunoglobulin E dosages. These 5 cases occurred exclusively on porcine bioprosthetic material, revealing a statistically significant association between bioprosthetic valves and NTM IE (P < .001).
Conclusions. The body of evidence confirmed the diagnosis of prosthetic IE. The statistically significant association between bioprosthetic valves and NTM IE encourages systematic Ziehl-Neelsen staining of explanted bioprosthetic valves in case of early bioprosthesis dysfunction, even without an obvious sign of IE. In addition, we strongly question the cardiac bioprosthesis conditioning process after animal sacrifice.
PMCID: PMC4511745  PMID: 26213691
bioprosthetic valve; infective endocarditis; nontuberculous mycobacteria
3.  Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic Modeling of Unboosted Atazanavir in a Cohort of Stable HIV-Infected Patients 
Limited data on the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) of unboosted atazanavir (uATV) in treatment-experienced patients are available. The aim of this work was to study the PK/PD of unboosted atazanavir in a cohort of HIV-infected patients. Data were available for 58 HIV-infected patients (69 uATV-based regimens). Atazanavir concentrations were analyzed by using a population approach, and the relationship between atazanavir PK and clinical outcome was examined using logistic regression. The final PK model was a linear one-compartment model with a mixture absorption model to account for two subgroups of absorbers. The mean (interindividual variability) of population PK parameters were as follows: clearance, 13.4 liters/h (40.7%), volume of distribution, 71.1 liters (29.7%), and fraction of regular absorbers, 0.49. Seven subjects experienced virological failure after switch to uATV. All of them were identified as low absorbers in the PK modeling. The absorption rate constant (0.38 ± 0.20 versus 0.75 ± 0.28 h−1; P = 0.002) and ATV exposure (area under the concentration-time curve from 0 to 24 h [AUC0–24], 10.3 ± 2.1 versus 22.4 ± 11.2 mg · h · liter−1; P = 0.001) were significantly lower in patients with virological failure than in patients without failure. In the logistic regression analysis, both the absorption rate constant and ATV trough concentration significantly influenced the probability of virological failure. A significant relationship between ATV pharmacokinetics and virological response was observed in a cohort of HIV patients who were administered unboosted atazanavir. This study also suggests that twice-daily administration of uATV may optimize drug therapy.
PMCID: PMC3535925  PMID: 23147727
5.  Clostridium sordellii Brain Abscess Diagnosed by 16S rRNA Gene Sequencing ▿  
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2010;48(9):3443-3444.
Clostridium sordellii is usually associated with skin and soft tissue infections. We describe the first case to our knowledge of a Clostridium sordellii-associated brain abscess, diagnosed by 16S rRNA gene sequencing, expanding the microbiological spectrum of brain abscesses, with emphasis on the role of 16S rRNA gene PCR in their etiologic diagnosis.
PMCID: PMC2937712  PMID: 20610672
7.  Decreased Production of Local Immunoglobulin A to Pneumocystis carinii in Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid from Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Positive Patients 
Infection and Immunity  2000;68(3):1054-1060.
An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and a Western blot analysis were developed to study the antibody response to Pneumocystis carinii in serum and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid from 27 human immunodeficiency virus 27 (HIV)-infected patients with P. carinii pneumonia (Pcp), 32 patients without Pcp, and 51 HIV-negative controls. Urea was used for the correct dilution of epithelial lining fluid, and albumin was used to evaluate transudation from plasma for the assessment of local production of antibodies to P. carinii. By contrast with those of immunoglobulin G (IgG), IgA responses to P. carinii were increased in serum from HIV-positive patients compared to negative controls. Local production of antibodies to P. carinii, especially IgA, was decreased in patients with Pcp. In a study of 10 patients of each group, IgG and IgA responses to gp116 from P. carinii were lower in patients with Pcp than in other groups. These results suggest that, in addition to alveolar macrophages, local antibodies may play a role in host defense against P. carinii.
PMCID: PMC97248  PMID: 10678907
8.  Detection of Pneumocystis carinii DNA in Blood Specimens from Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Patients by Nested PCR 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1999;37(1):127-131.
The detection of Pneumocystis carinii DNA in blood by PCR could be useful for studying the natural history of pneumocystosis and could also be a noninvasive diagnostic method. The results of previous studies are nevertheless conflicting. In our study, we compared three commercially available DNA extraction kits (GeneReleaser, QIAamp Tissue Kit, and ReadyAmp Genomic DNA Purification System) and proteinase K and proteinase K-phenol-chloroform treatments for the extraction of P. carinii DNA from dilutions of a P. carinii f. sp. hominis cyst suspension mixed with human whole blood. A rapid and simple nested PCR protocol which amplifies a portion of the mitochondrial large-subunit rRNA gene was applied to all the extraction products. The QIAmp Tissue Kit was the most effective kit for the isolation of amplification-ready P. carinii DNA and was used with nested PCR for the testing of whole-blood specimens from 35 immunocompetent control patients and 84 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients investigated for pulmonary disease and/or fever. In HIV-infected patients, P. carinii DNA was detected by nested PCR in blood samples from 3 of 14 patients with microscopically proven P. carinii pneumonia, 7 of 22 patients who were considered to be colonized with P. carinii, and 9 of 48 patients who were neither infected nor colonized with P. carinii. P. carinii DNA was not detected in blood specimens from the 35 immunocompetent patients. P. carinii DNA in blood might represent viable P. carinii organisms or DNA complexes released from pulmonary phagocytes. In conclusion, P. carinii DNA may be detected in whole blood from HIV-infected patients, but the nature and the meaning of the circulating form of P. carinii remain to be established.
PMCID: PMC84186  PMID: 9854076
9.  Rapid detection of Pneumocystis carinii in bronchoalveolar lavage specimens from human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients: use of a simple DNA extraction procedure and nested PCR. 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1997;35(11):2748-2751.
We report on the development of a rapid nested PCR protocol for the detection of Pneumocystis carinii DNA in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) specimens in which the protocol included the use of a commercially available DNA extraction kit (GeneReleaser). GeneReleaser enabled us to obtain amplification-ready DNA within 20 min without requiring the purification of the DNA. The nested PCR was performed with the primers pAZ102-E, pAZ102-H, and pAZ102-L2 (A. E. Wakefield, F. J. Pixley, S. Banerji, K. Sinclair, R. F. Miller, E. R. Moxon, and J. M. Hopkin, Lancet 336:451-453, 1990.). Results were obtained in about 4 h with the adoption of denaturation, annealing, and extension steps shortened to 20 seconds. The sensitivity of the nested PCR was tested with a P. carinii cyst suspension and was found to be less than one cyst (one to eight nuclei). The detection limit was the same with the use of GeneReleaser or proteinase K-phenol chloroform for DNA extraction. The nested PCR assay was prospectively compared with staining with Giemsa and methenamine silver stains for the detection of P. carinii in 127 BAL samples from 105 human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients investigated for acute respiratory illness. Twenty-five BAL specimens (20%) were positive by staining and the nested PCR and 25 (20%) were negative by staining and positive by the nested PCR. These 25 BAL specimens with conflicting results were obtained from 23 patients, 82% of whom were receiving prophylactic therapy against P. carinii pneumonia (PCP). Only two patients were diagnosed with possible PCP. The final diagnosis was not PCP for 20 patients who were considered to be colonized or to have a low level of infection. This colonization is not of clinical importance but is of epidemiological importance. Our rapid, simple, and sensitive amplification protocol may be performed in clinical laboratories for the routine diagnosis of PCP with BAL specimens.
PMCID: PMC230054  PMID: 9350726
10.  Monitoring levels of human cytomegalovirus DNA in blood after liver transplantation. 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1995;33(2):389-394.
We evaluated a semiquantitative PCR assay prospectively in 40 liver transplant recipients as an aid in making a prompt diagnosis of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection. For 2 months after transplantation, clinical specimens from patients were tested weekly by PCR, virus isolation from peripheral blood and urine, and CMV serology. The incidence of active CMV infection was 70%. The levels of CMV DNA determined by hybridization of PCR samples and densitometric scanning of blots were assigned a score of 1 to 4 by comparison with four external standards amplified in parallel and corresponding to a range of 80 to 80,000 genomes. The first detection of CMV in blood by PCR occurred at a mean of 15 days, and high-level PCR scores of 3 or 4 were obtained 21 days after transplantation, whereas viremia occurred 33 days after transplantation. Significantly higher levels of CMV DNA were seen in patients with CMV disease (P < 0.05) than in asymptomatic patients. The prevalence of symptomatic CMV infection was 30%. The positive predictive value of PCR was 48%, while the negative predictive value was 100%. After treatment, the clearance of CMV DNA was always observed and the disappearance of symptoms occurred concomitantly with undetectable PCR signals.
PMCID: PMC227954  PMID: 7714198

Results 1-10 (10)