A number of epidemiological studies have reported inconsistent findings on the association between meat consumption and lung cancer.
We therefore conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to investigate the relationship between meat consumption and lung cancer risk in epidemiological studies.
Twenty-three case–control and 11 cohort studies were included. All studies adjusted for smoking or conducted in never smokers. The summary relative risks (RRs) of lung cancer for the highest versus lowest intake categories were 1.35 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.08–1.69) for total meat, 1.34 (95% CI 1.18–1.52) for red meat, and 1.06 (95% CI 0.90–1.25) for processed meat. An inverse association was found between poultry intake and lung cancer (RR = 0.91, 95% CI 0.85–0.97), but not for total white meat (RR = 1.06, 95% CI 0.82–1.37) or fish (RR = 1.01, 95% CI 0.96–1.07).
The relationship between meat intake and lung cancer risk appears to depend on the types of meat consumed. A high intake of red meat may increase the risk of lung cancer by about 35%, while a high intake of poultry decreases the risk by about 10%. More well-designed cohort studies on meat mutagens or heme iron, meat cooking preferences, and doneness level are needed to fully characterize this meat–lung cancer association.
case–control study; cohort study; lung cancer; meat consumption; meta-analysis
We used a superficial parotid lobe–sparing delineation approach for dose optimization with better protection for the parotid glands in intensity-modulated radiotherapy (imrt) for nasopharyngeal carcinoma (npc) patients.
Compared with traditional contouring of the entire parotid glands as organs at risk (oars) in imrt for npc, we used a superficial parotid lobe–sparing delineation approach of contouring the superficial parotid lobes as oars. Changes in dose to the parotid glands, the targets, and other oars were evaluated.
The mean dose to the parotid glands overall decreased by more than 4 Gy in the test plans. Impressively, the mean dose to the superficial parotid lobes in the test plans was not more than 30 Gy, regardless of clinical stage. In T1–3 npc patients, the dose distributions for targets were not significantly different in the control plans and the test plans. However, for some T4 patients, the dose distributions for targets and brainstem in the test plans could not meet clinical requirements.
The superficial parotid lobe–sparing delineation approach can significantly lower the mean dose to the entire parotid and to the superficial parotid lobe in T1–3 npc patients, which would be expected to result in less xerostomia and better quality of life for those patients.
Intensity-modulated radiotherapy; nasopharyngeal carcinoma; superficial parotid lobes
The Type VI secretion system (T6SS) is a versatile machine that delivers toxins into either eukaryotic or bacterial cells. At a molecular level, the T6SS is composed of a membrane complex that anchors a long cytoplasmic tubular structure to the cell envelope. This structure is thought to resemble the tail of contractile bacteriophages. It is composed of the Hcp protein that assembles into hexameric rings stacked onto each other to form a tube similar to the phage tail tube. This tube is proposed to be wrapped by a structure called the sheath, composed of two proteins, TssB and TssC. It has been shown using fluorescence microscopy that the TssB and TssC proteins assemble into a tubular structure that cycles between long and short conformations suggesting that, similarly to the bacteriophage sheath, the T6SS sheath undergoes elongation and contraction events. The TssB and TssC proteins have been shown to interact and a specific α-helix of TssB is required for this interaction. Here, we confirm that the TssB and TssC proteins interact in enteroaggregative E. coli. We further show that this interaction requires the N-terminal region of TssC and the conserved α-helix of TssB. Using site-directed mutagenesis coupled to phenotypic analyses, we demonstrate that an hydrophobic motif located in the N-terminal region of this helix is required for interaction with TssC, sheath assembly and T6SS function.
Mycobacterium leprae was the only known cause of leprosy until 2008, when a new species, named Mycobacterium lepromatosis, was found to cause diffuse lepromatous leprosy (DLL), a unique form of leprosy endemic in Mexico.
We sought to differentiate the leprosy agents among 120 Mexican patients with various clinical forms of leprosy and to compare their relative prevalence and disease features. Archived skin biopsy specimens from these patients were tested for both M. leprae and M. lepromatosis using polymerase chain reaction-based species-specific assays.
Eighty-seven (72.5%) patients were confirmed for etiologic species, including 55 with M. lepromatosis, 18 with M. leprae, and 14 with both organisms. The endemic regions of each agent differed but overlapped. Patients with M. lepromatosis were younger and from more states, and their clinical diagnoses included 13 DLL, 34 lepromatous leprosy (LL), and eight other forms of leprosy. By contrast, the diagnoses of patients with M. leprae included none DLL, 15 LL and three other forms. Thus, M. lepromatosis caused DLL specifically (p=0.023). Patients with M. lepromatosis also showed more variable skin lesions and the extremities were the commonest biopsy sites. Finally, patients with dual infections manifested all clinical forms and accounted for 16.1% of all species-confirmed cases.
M. lepromatosis is another cause of leprosy and is probably more prevalent than M. leprae in Mexico. It mainly causes LL and also specifically DLL. Dual infections caused by both species may occur in endemic area.
leprosy; diffuse lepromatous leprosy; Lucio’s phenomenon; Mycobacterium lepromatosis; Mycobacterium leprae
The evidence for a role of tobacco smoking, alcohol drinking, and body mass index (BMI) in the etiology of small intestine cancer is based mainly on case–control studies from Europe and United States.
Subjects and methods
We harmonized the data across 12 cohort studies from mainland China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan, comprising over 500 000 subjects followed for an average of 10.6 years. We calculated hazard ratios (HRs) for BMI and (only among men) tobacco smoking and alcohol drinking.
A total of 134 incident cases were observed (49 adenocarcinoma, 11 carcinoid, 46 other histologic types, and 28 of unknown histology). There was a statistically non-significant trend toward increased HR in subjects with high BMI [HR for BMI >27.5 kg/m2, compared with 22.6–25.0, 1.50; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.76–2.96]. No association was suggested for tobacco smoking; men drinking >400 g of ethanol per week had an HR of 1.57 (95% CI 0.66–3.70), compared with abstainers.
Our study supports the hypothesis that elevated BMI may be a risk factor for small intestine cancer. An etiologic role of alcohol drinking was suggested. Our results reinforce the existing evidence that the epidemiology of small intestine cancer resembles that of colorectal cancer.
alcohol drinking; body mass index; prospective studies; small intestine cancer; tobacco smoking
The Type VI secretion system (T6SS) is a macromolecular complex widespread in Gram-negative bacteria. Although several T6SS are required for virulence towards host models, most are necessary to eliminate competitor bacteria. Other functions, such as resistance to amoeba predation, biofilm formation or adaptation to environmental conditions have also been reported. This multitude of functions is reflected by the large repertoire of regulatory mechanisms shown to control T6SS expression, production or activation. Here, we demonstrate that one T6SS gene cluster encoded within the Yersinia pseudotuberculosis genome, T6SS-4, is regulated by OmpR, the response regulator of the two-component system EnvZ-OmpR. We first identified OmpR in a transposon mutagenesis screen. OmpR does not control the expression of the four other Y. pseudotuberculosis T6SS gene clusters and of an isolated vgrG gene, and responds to osmotic stresses to bind to and activate the T6SS-4 promoter. Finally, we show that T6SS-4 promotes Y. pseudotuberculosis survival in high osmolarity conditions and resistance to deoxycholate.
Diagnosis of cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is challenging because of the high rate of asymptomatic infection and the low specificity of associated symptoms and signs. As a result, laboratory testing is an essential aid in making an accurate diagnosis. The presence of CMV IgM is indicative of primary CMV infection. In pregnancy, diagnosis of primary infection is important because primary maternal infection increases fetal infection risk substantially. Fetal infection can result in serious sequelae ranging from neurological deficits to death. Diagnosis among the immunocompromised is also critical for the timely initiation of therapy that can reduce morbidity and mortality risk.
The IMMULITE® 2000 CMV IgM assay qualitatively detects CMV IgM antibodies in human serum or plasma to aid in the diagnosis of current or recent CMV infection. To determine expected values in apparently healthy subjects, 136 samples were tested. Reproducibility, normal range, and method comparison studies were also performed to evaluate the assay's performance. The assay's reproducibility was evaluated across three sites. Seven hundred and eighteen (n = 718) individual patient serum samples, which included samples from CMV IgM-positive (n = 109, determined by the Abbott IMx CMV or the Diamedix CMV IgM assays), pregnant (n = 210), HIV-positive (n = 30), immunosuppressed (n = 102), and transplant patients (n = 17) and from patients with potentially cross-reacting conditions (n = 136) were evaluated in the method comparison study. The positive, negative, and overall agreement between the IMMULITE 2000 CMV IgM assay and the VIDAS CMV IgM assay (predicate assay) were determined.
The assay demonstrated excellent reproducibility with a total CV of less than 10%. The positive, negative, and overall agreement between the IMMULITE 2000 assay and the VIDAS assay were > 95% for the method comparison samples. Among potentially cross-reactive samples, the overall agreement between the two assays was 96%. Similarly, among the immunocompromised and pregnant subjects, the overall agreement was ~96% and ~97%, respectively.
The IMMULITE 2000 CMV IgM assay demonstrated excellent reproducibility, minimal cross-reactivity, and performance comparable to that of the VIDAS CMV IgM assay. It can aid in the diagnosis of acute CMV or recent CMV infection by qualitatively detecting the CMV IgM antibodies in human serum or plasma.
FTO harbours the strongest known obesity-susceptibility locus in Europeans. While there is growing evidence for a role for FTO in obesity risk in Asians, its association with type 2 diabetes, independently of BMI, remains inconsistent. To test whether there is an association of the FTO locus with obesity and type 2 diabetes, we conducted a meta-analysis of 32 populations including 96,551 East and South Asians.
All studies published on the association between FTO-rs9939609 (or proxy [r2 > 0.98]) and BMI, obesity or type 2 diabetes in East or South Asians were invited. Each study group analysed their data according to a standardised analysis plan. Association with type 2 diabetes was also adjusted for BMI. Random-effects meta-analyses were performed to pool all effect sizes.
The FTO-rs9939609 minor allele increased risk of obesity by 1.25-fold/allele (p = 9.0 × 10−19), overweight by 1.13-fold/allele (p = 1.0 × 10−11) and type 2 diabetes by 1.15-fold/allele (p = 5.5 × 10−8). The association with type 2 diabetes was attenuated after adjustment for BMI (OR 1.10-fold/allele, p = 6.6 × 10−5). The FTO-rs9939609 minor allele increased BMI by 0.26 kg/m2 per allele (p = 2.8 × 10−17), WHR by 0.003/allele (p = 1.2 × 10−6), and body fat percentage by 0.31%/allele (p = 0.0005). Associations were similar using dominant models. While the minor allele is less common in East Asians (12–20%) than South Asians (30–33%), the effect of FTO variation on obesity-related traits and type 2 diabetes was similar in the two populations.
FTO is associated with increased risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes, with effect sizes similar in East and South Asians and similar to those observed in Europeans. Furthermore, FTO is also associated with type 2 diabetes independently of BMI.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00125-011-2370-7) contains peer-reviewed but unedited supplementary material, which is available to authorised users.
Asians; FTO; Meta-analysis; Obesity; Type 2 diabetes
“Pseudomonas andersonii” is a Gram-negative bacillus initially isolated from a granulomatous lung lesion. Novel species status has not been validated for this single strain. We report four additional cases of pulmonary granuloma involving P. andersonii and further characterize the organism. These patients had pulmonary nodules that were surgically resected and which grew P. andersonii on routine culture. Mycobacterium avium complex was concomitantly isolated in two cases, and fungal structures were identified histopathologically in two other cases. The five P. andersonii strains described to date were similar in growth characteristics, biochemical reactions, matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization–time of flight mass spectrometry protein profiles, and susceptibility to antimicrobial agents. Their 16S rRNA genes were 99.9 to 100% identical but less than 95.0% similar to those of all other known bacteria. The gyrA genes of these strains were 99.5 to 100% identical. These shared features illustrate P. andersonii as a unique and distinct bacterium and support the novel species status of the organism.
A 65-year-old woman with a history of gastric bleeding, breast cancer, antineoplastic chemotherapy, and prednisone use presented with a fever, chest pain, a dry cough, hypotension, and prominent pulmonary bronchovascular markings. She was treated with piperacillin-tazobactam and azithromycin and rapidly improved. Six days later, the blood culture grew a pleomorphic Gram-negative bacillus. Initial subculture failed, but the organism was identified as Helicobacter pylori by sequencing the 16S rRNA gene. The bacterium eventually grew on brucella agar upon extended incubation.
Haematobacter is a newly proposed genus for a group of fastidious Gram-negative aerobic bacilli isolated mostly from blood samples from patients with septicemia. The Haematobacter genus currently includes two species, H. massiliensis and H. missouriensis. We report isolation of a novel Haematobacter-like species from the blood of a 65-year-old man who suffered from probable aortic valve endocarditis. The possible causative role was suggested by the monomicrobial culture and the absence of another causative agent in a patient with probable endocarditis by Duke criteria. This fastidious organism could not be identified by routine biochemical tests. Sequencing analysis of the 16S rRNA gene (1,425 bp) best matched the known Haematobacter species yet was substantially different with a nucleotide similarity of 96.7%. This strain also reduced nitrate to nitrite, unlike known species. This case is likely the first reported case of endocarditis possibly caused by a Haematobacter-like organism.
Cerebral endothelial cell (CEC) degeneration significantly contributes to blood-brain barrier (BBB) breakdown and neuronal loss after cerebral ischemia. Recently, emerging data suggest that peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor δ (PPARδ) activation has a potential neuroprotective role in ischemic stroke. Here we report for the first time that PPARδ is significantly reduced in oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD)-induced mouse CEC death. Interestingly, PPARδ overexpression can suppress OGD-induced caspase-3 activity, Golgi fragmentation, and CEC death through an increase of bcl-2 protein levels without change of bcl-2 mRNA levels. To explore the molecular mechanisms, we have identified that upregulation of PPARδ can alleviate ODG-activated microRNA-15a (miR-15a) expression in CECs. Moreover, we have demonstrated that bcl-2 is a translationally-repressed target of miR-15a. Intriguingly, gain- or loss-of-miR-15a function can significantly reduce or increase OGD-induced CEC death, respectively. Furthermore, we have identified that miR-15a is a transcriptional target of PPARδ. Consistent with the in vitro findings, we found that intracerebroventricular infusion of a specific PPARδ agonist, GW 501516, significantly reduced ischemia-induced miR-15a expression, increased bcl-2 protein levels, and attenuated caspase-3 activity and subsequent DNA fragmentation in isolated cerebral microvessels, leading to decreased BBB disruption and reduced cerebral infarction in mice after transient focal cerebral ischemia. Taken together, these results suggest that PPARδ plays a vascular-protective role in ischemia-like insults via transcriptional repression of miR-15a, resulting in subsequent release of its posttranscriptional inhibition of bcl-2. Thus, regulation of PPARδ-mediated miR-15a inhibition of bcl-2 could provide a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of stroke-related vascular dysfunction.
PPARδ; microRNAs; cell death; cerebral vascular endothelial cell; cerebral ischemia
Insulin secretion from pancreatic β–cells is dependent on maturation and acidification of the secretory granule necessary for prohormone convertase cleavage of proinsulin. Previous studies in isolated β–cells revealed that acidification may be dependent on the granule membrane chloride channel ClC-3, in a step permissive for a regulated secretory response. In this study, immuno-electron microscopy of β–cells revealed colocalization of ClC-3 and insulin on secretory granules. Clc-3−/− mice as well as isolated islets demonstrate impaired insulin secretion; clc3−/− β–cells are defective in regulated insulin exocytosis and granular acidification. Increased amounts of proinsulin were found in the majority of secretory granules in the clc-3−/− mice while in clc3+/+ cells, proinsulin was confined to the immature secretory granules. These results demonstrate that in pancreatic β–cells chloride channels, specifically ClC-3, are localized on insulin granules and play a role in insulin processing as well as insulin secretion through regulation of granular acidification.
Mycobacterium lepromatosis is a newly discovered leprosy-causing organism. Preliminary phylogenetic analysis of its 16S rRNA gene and a few other gene segments revealed significant divergence from Mycobacterium leprae, a well-known cause of leprosy, that justifies the status of M. lepromatosis as a new species. In this study we analyzed the sequences of 20 genes and pseudogenes (22,814 nucleotides). Overall, the level of matching of these sequences with M. leprae sequences was 90.9%, which substantiated the species-level difference; the levels of matching for the 16S rRNA genes and 14 protein-encoding genes were 98.0% and 93.1%, respectively, but the level of matching for five pseudogenes was only 79.1%. Five conserved protein-encoding genes were selected to construct phylogenetic trees and to calculate the numbers of synonymous substitutions (dS values) and nonsynonymous substitutions (dN values) in the two species. Robust phylogenetic trees constructed using concatenated alignment of these genes placed M. lepromatosis and M. leprae in a tight cluster with long terminal branches, implying that the divergence occurred long ago. The dS and dN values were also much higher than those for other closest pairs of mycobacteria. The dS values were 14 to 28% of the dS values for M. leprae and Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a more divergent pair of species. These results thus indicate that M. lepromatosis and M. leprae diverged ∼10 million years ago. The M. lepromatosis pseudogenes analyzed that were also pseudogenes in M. leprae showed nearly neutral evolution, and their relative ages were similar to those of M. leprae pseudogenes, suggesting that they were pseudogenes before divergence. Taken together, the results described above indicate that M. lepromatosis and M. leprae diverged from a common ancestor after the massive gene inactivation event described previously for M. leprae.
We evaluated animal food intake and cooking methods in relation to endometrial cancer risk in a population-based case–control study in Shanghai, China. A validated food frequency questionnaire was used to collect the usual dietary habits of 1204 cases and 1212 controls aged 30–69 years between 1997 and 2003. Statistical analyses were based on an unconditional logistic regression model adjusting for potential confounders. High intake of meat and fish was associated with an increased risk of endometrial cancer, with adjusted odds ratios for the highest vs the lowest quartile groups being 1.7 (95% confidence interval: 1.3–2.2) and 2.4 (1.8–3.1), respectively. The elevated risk was observed for all types of meat and fish intake. Intake of eggs and milk was not related to risk. Cooking methods and doneness levels for meat and fish were not associated with risk, nor did they modify the association with meat and fish consumption. Our study suggests that animal food consumption may play an important role in the aetiology of endometrial cancer, but cooking methods have minimal influence on risk among Chinese women.
endometrial cancer; dietary factor; case–control study
The epidemiologic features of reactivated cytomegalovirus (CMV) antigenemia were studied among 4,382 cancer patients who were cared for and tested at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center from 2001 to 2004. The effects of stem cell transplant (SCT) status, underlying disease, age, sex, ethnicity, and antibody status (prior to CMV exposure) on the incidence of CMV antigenemia were determined; and the CMV burdens were quantified. Antigenemia occurred in 9.3% of patients with non-SCT (n = 2511), 12.0% with autologous SCT (n = 582), and 39.1% with allogeneic SCT (n = 1289). Non-SCT patients with lymphoid tumors had a significantly higher rate of antigenemia than those with myeloid tumors (13.6% versus 3.9%) (P < 0.001); however, after allogeneic SCT, the underlying diseases had little effect, except for multiple myeloma (56.8%) (P = 0.014). Among the allogeneic SCT recipients, higher CMV antigenemia rates were also associated with female sex, older age, and positivity for pre-SCT CMV antibody. Depending on the underlying disease and its associated initial CMV risk, allogeneic SCT increased the risk by 2.6- to 29.6-fold (overall, 4.0-fold). With or without SCT, Asians had the highest CMV antigenemia rates and burdens, followed by blacks, Hispanics, and whites, and these partially correlated with antibody prevalence. Among the 808 patients with antigenemia, the circulating peak CMV burden was significantly higher among non-SCT patients (geometric mean, 18.7 positive cells per 106 leukocytes) than among allogeneic SCT patients (geometric mean, 7.7 positive cells per 106 leukocytes) or autologous SCT patients (geometric mean, 7.0 positive cells per 106 leukocytes) who underwent monitoring for CMV. Together, these results allow stratification of CMV risks and suggest a substantial CMV reactivation among non-SCT cancer patients and, thus, the need for better diagnosis and control.
Members of the family of Xanthomonadaceae are typically characterized as environmental organisms. With the exception of Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, these organisms are infrequently implicated as human pathogens. We describe three cases of central venous catheter-associated bloodstream infections caused by Dokdonella koreensis, Aquimonas voraii, and a Luteibacter sp., all newly named genera within the family Xanthomonadaceae. The three patients all had histories of underlying hematological disorders, presented with fever, and recovered fully following treatment. These isolates required 16S rRNA gene sequencing for identification and, unlike S. maltophilia, demonstrated susceptibility to most antibiotics tested. This report represents the first description of human infections caused by these organisms.
In a population-based case–control study of 832 incident endometrial cancer cases and 846 frequency-matched controls among Chinese women in Shanghai, using a validated food-frequency questionnaire, dietary habits were estimated by in-person interviews. Total vegetable consumption was inversely associated with endometrial cancer risk (highest quartile vs lowest: OR=0.69, 95% CI 0.50–0.96). The risk was reduced with increasing intake of dark green/dark yellow vegetables (trend test, P=0.02), fresh legumes (trend test, P<0.01), and allium vegetables (trend test, P=0.04). Fruit consumption was unrelated to risk. These results suggest that high consumption of certain vegetables may reduce the risk of endometrial cancer.
vegetables; fruit; endometrial cancer
Most Neisseria species are gram-negative cocci or diplococci; currently, N. elongata is the only species of human origin with a bacillary morphology. Here, we report isolation and characterization of eight strains of another bacillary Neisseria species from human infections. The organisms caused or contributed to either oral cavity-related or respiratory tract infections, and two strains were isolated from blood cultures. The 16S rRNA gene sequences of these organisms, being homogenous or nearly so (99.4 to 100% identity), matched at <96% known Neisseria species and formed a distinct group within the genus. Analysis of the cellular fatty acids showed broad similarity with a few Neisseria species. The organisms were gram negative and measured 0.6 μm by 1.3 to 3.0 μm. They grew well on chocolate agar and on sheep blood agar but did not grow on modified Thayer-Martin agar. They were positive for oxidase and negative for indole production. There was no acid production from dextrose, lactose, maltose, or sucrose. The tests for catalase reaction, nitrate reduction, and tributilin varied with the strains. These results suggest that these organisms represent a novel species within the genus Neisseria, for which the name Neisseria bacilliformis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is MDA2833 = ATCC BAA-1200T = CCUG50858T. Distinction between N. bacilliformis and N. elongata can be made confidently by 16S rRNA gene sequencing or cellular fatty acid profiling but may be difficult by morphology or routine biochemical tests.
Clinical and microbiologic studies of 50 cases of viridans streptococcal bacteremia in cancer patients were performed. The bacteria were identified to species level by sequencing analysis of the 16S rRNA gene. At least nine Streptococcus spp. were found, including S. mitis (25 strains, 50.0% of 50); currently unnamed Streptococcus spp. (11 strains); S. parasanguis (five strains); S. anginosus (three strains); S. salivarius (two strains); and one strain each of S. gordonii, S. sanguis, S. sobrinus, and S. vestibularis. There were no S. oralis strains. Among 11 antibiotics of nine classes tested, no resistance to vancomycin, linezolid, or quinupristin-dalfopristin was seen. Resistance to penicillin (MIC, 4 to 12 μg/ml) was noted only among S. mitis strains (28.0%, 7/25) and not non-S. mitis strains (0/25) (P = 0.004). Significantly more S. mitis strains than non-S. mitis strains were resistant to fluoroquinolones and to ≥3 classes of antibiotics. Isolation of quinolone-resistant organisms was associated with the prior usage of quinolones (P = 0.002). Quantitative blood cultures showed that the strains resistant to levofloxacin or gatifloxacin were associated with higher colony counts than were their corresponding nonresistant strains. The young and elderly patients also had higher levels of bacteremia caused predominantly by S. mitis. Septic shock was present in 17 (34.0% of 50) patients, and 13 of those cases were caused by S. mitis (P = 0.007). These results suggest that S. mitis is the most common cause of viridans streptococcal bacteremia in cancer patients and is more resistant to antibiotics than other species.
The clinical significance and prevalence of Mycobacterium avium and Mycobacterium intracellulare were analyzed in a cohort of 7,472 patients who, from 1999 to 2003, sought care at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, and had cultures performed for mycobacteria. Patients were stratified for age, sex, and underlying diseases, and bacteria were identified by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. M. avium was isolated in 62 (0.83%) of 7,472 patients and M. intracellulare in 65 (0.87%). Clinically, only 10 of the 62 (16.2%) patients with M. avium had probable to definite evidence of infection, whereas the majority (83.8%) had weak evidence of infection. Sex and age did not affect the isolation or infection of M. avium. Hematological tumors predisposed to M. avium colonization but not infection. In contrast, 41 of the 65 (63.1%) patients with M. intracellulare had probable to definite infection, a level much higher than those with M. avium (P < 0.001). M. intracellulare was more prevalent in women (1.33% of 3,311) than in men (0.50% of 4,161) (P < 0.001), and underlying diseases had no effect in women. Men with lung cancer had a higher prevalence (1.37%) than men without (0.34%) (4.0-fold; P < 0.001), but it was similar to that in women. A marked age trend for the isolation of M. intracellulare among women was noted: 0.27% (1-fold) for ages of <50 years, 0.85% (3.1-fold) for ages 50 to 59 years, 1.50% (5.6-fold) for ages 60 to 69 years, and 3.74% (13.9-fold) for ages ≥70 years (trend, P < 0.001). The combined rate for women ≥50 was 1.86% (95% confidence interval [1.30 to 2.42%]) (6.9-fold). Together, these results suggest that, among non-AIDS patients, M. intracellulare is more pathogenic and tends to infect women increasingly beyond menopause (age ≥50 years) regardless of underlying disease. The prevalence rate of 1.86% in postmenopausal women suggests the need to further investigate the public health significance of M. intracellulare.
Keywords: Rapidly progressive dementia; Mycobacterium neoaurum; Central nervous system; Meningitis; Rheumatoid arthritis
Oral Campylobacter species are rarely reported to cause extraoral infections. Here we present three cases of extraoral abscess caused by an oral Campylobacter sp. and a Streptococcus sp. The Campylobacter species were all isolated anaerobically and identified by sequencing analysis of the 16S rRNA gene. The cases included a breast abscess caused by Campylobacter rectus and a non-group A beta-hemolytic streptococcus in a patient with lymphoma, a liver abscess caused by Campylobacter curvus and an alpha-hemolytic streptococcus in a patient with complicated ovarian cancer, and a postobstructive bronchial abscess caused by C. curvus and group C beta-hemolytic Streptococcus constellatus in a patient with lung cancer. The abscesses were drained or resected, and the patients were treated with antibiotics with full resolution of the lesions. The C. curvus cases are likely the first reported infections by this organism, and the C. rectus case represents the second such reported extraoral infection.
The description of the new species Cardiobacterium valvarum prompted a search for additional strains of the organism. Here we report characterization of four oral Cardiobacterium strains from the Culture Collection of the University of Goteborg. The 16S rRNA gene sequences of the organisms exhibited 99.6% to 99.3% homology with Cardiobacterium valvarum. The cellular fatty acid profiles, electrophoretic patterns of whole-cell proteins, growth rate and nutritional requirement, colonial and cellular morphology, and biochemical reactions were also similar to those of C. valvarum. These results thus classify these organisms as oral strains of C. valvarum. All strains were susceptible to many antibiotics tested. The description of the species was emended. C. valvarum is a rare cause of endocarditis, and its relationship with periodontal diseases may need investigation.