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1.  Efficacy and safety of a booster dose of influenza vaccination in solid organ transplant recipients, TRANSGRIPE 1-2: study protocol for a multicenter, randomized, controlled clinical trial 
Trials  2014;15(1):338.
Background
Despite administration of annual influenza vaccination, influenza-associated complications in transplant recipients continue to be an important cause of hospitalization and death. Although influenza vaccination has been proven to be the most effective measure to reduce influenza infection after transplantation, transplant recipients are still vulnerable to influenza infections, with lower serological responses to vaccination compared to the general population. In order to assess the efficacy and safety of an alternative immunization scheme for solid organ transplant recipients, the TRANSGRIPE1-2 Study Group aimed to test a booster dose administration 5 weeks after the standard vaccination. The primary objective of this trial was to compare short-term and long-term neutralizing antibody immunogenicity of a booster dose of influenza vaccination to the standard single-dose immunization scheme. Secondary objectives included the evaluation of the efficacy and/or safety, cellular immune response, incidence of influenza infection, graft rejection, retransplant and mortality rates.
Methods/Design
This phase III, randomized, controlled, open-label clinical trial was conducted between October 2012 and December 2013 in 12 Spanish public referral hospitals. Solid organ transplant recipients (liver, kidney, heart or lung), older than 16 years of age more than 30 days after transplantation were eligible to participate. Patients (N = 514) were stratified 1:1 by center, type of organ and time after transplantation and who either received the standard single dose (n = 257) or were treated according to a novel influenza vaccination schedule comprising the administration of a booster dose 5 weeks after standard vaccination (n = 254). Seroconversion rates were measured as a determinant of protection against influenza (main outcome). Efficacy and safety outcomes were followed until 1 year after influenza vaccination with assessment of short-term (0, 5, 10 and 15 weeks) and long-term (12 months) results. Intention-to-treat, per-protocol and safety analyses will be performed.
Discussion
This trial will increase knowledge about the safety and efficacy of a booster dose of influenza vaccine in solid organ transplant recipients. At the time the manuscript was submitted for publication, trial recruitment was closed with a total of 499 participants included during a 2-month period (within the seasonal influenza vaccination campaign).
Trial registration
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01761435 (registered 13 December 2012).
EudraCT Identifier: 2011-003243-21 (registered 4 July 2011).
doi:10.1186/1745-6215-15-338
PMCID: PMC4159520  PMID: 25168918
Influenza prevention; Influenza vaccination; Randomized trial; Solid organ transplant
2.  Daptomycin Is Effective in Treatment of Experimental Endocarditis Due to Methicillin-Resistant and Glycopeptide-Intermediate Staphylococcus aureus▿  
Daptomycin is a lipopeptide antibiotic with potent in vitro activity against gram-positive cocci, including Staphylococcus aureus. This study evaluated the in vitro and in vivo efficacies of daptomycin against two clinical isolates: methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) 277 (vancomycin MIC, 2 μg/ml) and glycopeptide-intermediate S. aureus (GISA) ATCC 700788 (vancomycin MIC, 8 μg/ml). Time-kill experiments demonstrated that daptomycin was bactericidal in vitro against these two strains. The in vivo activity of daptomycin (6 mg/kg of body weight every 24 h) was evaluated by using a rabbit model of infective endocarditis and was compared with the activities of a high-dose (HD) vancomycin regimen (1 g intravenously every 6 h), the recommended dose (RD) of vancomycin regimen (1 g intravenously every 12 h) for 48 h, and no treatment (as a control). Daptomycin was significantly more effective than the vancomycin RD in reducing the density of bacteria in the vegetations for the MRSA strains (0 [interquartile range, 0 to 1.5] versus 2 [interquartile range, 0 to 5.6] log CFU/g vegetation; P = 0.02) and GISA strains (2 [interquartile range, 0 to 2] versus 6.6 [interquartile range, 2.0 to 6.9] log CFU/g vegetation; P < 0.01) studied. In addition, daptomycin sterilized more MRSA vegetations than the vancomycin RD (13/18 [72%] versus 7/20 [35%]; P = 0.02) and sterilized more GISA vegetations than either vancomycin regimen (12/19 [63%] versus 4/20 [20%]; P < 0.01). No statistically significant difference between the vancomycin HD and the vancomycin RD for MRSA treatment was noted. These results support the use of daptomycin for the treatment of aortic valve endocarditis caused by GISA and MRSA.
doi:10.1128/AAC.00510-07
PMCID: PMC2443906  PMID: 18426900
4.  Efficacy of Telavancin in the Treatment of Experimental Endocarditis Due to Glycopeptide-Intermediate Staphylococcus aureus▿  
The efficacy of telavancin, a novel lipoglycopeptide, was evaluated in experimental endocarditis in rabbits using two clinical isolates of glycopeptide-intermediate Staphylococcus aureus: ATCC 700788 and HIP 5836. Infected rabbits were treated for 2 days with telavancin (10 mg/kg of body weight once daily intravenously) or vancomycin (1 g twice daily intravenously), administered with a computer-controlled infusion pump system simulating human serum kinetics. Vegetations were harvested at 16 h postinoculation in the control group and at the end of treatment in the drug-treated group. For ATCC 700788, MICs and minimal bactericidal concentrations (MBCs), respectively, were 1 mg/liter and 4 mg/liter for telavancin and 8 mg/liter and 128 mg/liter for vancomycin. For HIP 5836, MICs and MBCs, respectively, were 4 mg/liter and 8 mg/liter for telavancin and 8 mg/liter and 128 mg/liter for vancomycin. Peak and trough levels were 90 μg/ml and 6 μg/ml, respectively, for telavancin and 46 μg/ml and 6 μg/ml, respectively, for vancomycin. In glycopeptide-intermediate S. aureus ATCC 700788, telavancin sterilized 6 of 16 vegetations (37%), whereas vancomycin sterilized 4 of 20 (20%) (P = 0.29) compared with 0 of 17 in the control group. In HIP 5836 experiments, telavancin and vancomycin sterilized 5 of 16 (31%) and 1 of 15 (7%) vegetations (P = 0.17), respectively, compared with none in the control group. Telavancin reduced vegetation titers by 2.0 and 2.3 logs greater than vancomycin for the ATCC 700788 (4.6 [2.0 to 5.8] versus 6.6 [2.0 to 6.9] log CFU/g vegetation; P = 0.05) and HIP 5836 (4.4 [2.0 to 7.4] versus 6.7 [4.5 to 8.7] log CFU/g vegetation; P = 0.09) strains, respectively; these differences did not reach statistical significance. All isolates from vegetations remained susceptible to telavancin after therapy. The results suggest that telavancin may be an effective treatment for endocarditis caused by glycopeptide-intermediate S. aureus.
doi:10.1128/AAC.01266-06
PMCID: PMC1913277  PMID: 17485502
5.  Inflammatory Responses in Blood Samples of Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Patients with Pulmonary Infections 
We analyzed the characteristics of the inflammatory response occurring in blood during pulmonary infections in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients. A prospective study of consecutive hospital admissions of HIV-infected patients with new-onset radiologic pulmonary infiltrates was carried out in a tertiary university hospital from April 1998 to May 2001. Plasma cyclic AMP receptor protein (CRP), interleukin 1β (IL-1β), IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) levels were determined at the time of admission and 4, 5, and 6 days later. Patients were included in a protocol addressed to study etiology and outcome of disease. A total of 249 episodes of infection were included, with the main diagnoses being bacterial pneumonia (BP) (118 episodes), Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP) (41 episodes), and mycobacteriosis (36 episodes). For these three patient groups, at the time of admission the median CRP and cytokine levels were as follows: CRP, 10.2, 3.8 and 5 mg/dl, respectively (P = 0.0001); IL-8, 19, 3, and 2.9 pg/ml (P = 0.045); and TNF-α, 46.4, 44, and 75 pg/ml, respectively (P = 0.029). There were no significant differences in levels of IL-1β, IL-6, or IL-10 among the patient groups. A total of 23 patients died. At the time of admission, HIV-infected patients with BP had higher plasma CRP and IL-8 levels than did PCP and mycobacteriosis patients. TNF-α levels were higher in patients with mycobacteriosis. An elevated IL-8 level (>61 pg/ml) at the time of admission was an independent factor associated with higher mortality (odds ratio, 12; 95% confidence interval, 1.2 to 235.5).
doi:10.1128/CDLI.11.3.608-614.2004
PMCID: PMC404570  PMID: 15138189
6.  Pulmonary Infiltrates in Immunosuppressed Patients: Analysis of a Diagnostic Protocol 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2002;40(6):2134-2140.
A diagnostic protocol was started to study the etiology of pulmonary infiltrates in immunosuppressed patients. The diagnostic yields of the different techniques were analyzed, with special emphasis on the importance of the sample quality and the role of rapid techniques in the diagnostic strategy. In total, 241 patients with newly developed pulmonary infiltrates within a period of 19 months were included. Noninvasive or invasive evaluation was performed according to the characteristics of the infiltrates. Diagnosis was achieved in 202 patients (84%); 173 patients (72%) had pneumonia, and specific etiologic agents were found in 114 (66%). Bronchoaspirate and bronchoalveolar lavage showed the highest yields, either on global analysis (23 of 35 specimens [66%] and 70 of 134 specimens [52%], respectively) or on analysis of each type of pneumonia. A tendency toward better results with optimal-quality samples was observed, and a statistically significant difference was found in sputum bacterial culture. Rapid diagnostic tests yielded results in 71 of 114 (62.2%) diagnoses of etiological pneumonia.
doi:10.1128/JCM.40.6.2134-2140.2002
PMCID: PMC130687  PMID: 12037077

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