Multiple guidelines and systematic reviews recommend sealant use to reduce caries risk. Yet, multiple reports also indicate that sealants are significantly underutilized. This study examined the knowledge, opinions, values, and practice (KOVP) of dentists concerning sealant use in the southwest region of Andalusia, Spain. This is a prelude to the generation of a regional plan for improving children’s oral health in Andalusia.
The survey’s target population was dentists working in western Andalusia, equally distributed in the provinces of Seville, Cadiz, and Huelva (N=2,047). A convenience sample of meeting participants and meeting participant email lists (N=400) were solicited from the annual course on Community and Pediatric Dentistry. This course is required for all public health sector dentists, and is open to all private sector dentists. Information on the dentist’s KOVP of sealants was collected using four-part questionnaire with 31, 5-point Likert-scaled questions.
The survey population demographics included 190 men (48%) and 206 women (52%) with an average clinical experience of 10.6 (± 8.4) years and 9.3 (± 7.5) years, respectively. A significant sex difference was observed in the distribution of place of work (urban/suburb) (p=0.001), but no sex differences between working sector (public/private). The mean ± SD values for each of the four KOVP sections for pit and fissure sealants were: knowledge = 3.57 ± 0.47; opinion = 2.48 ± 0.47; value = 2.74 ± 0.52; and practice = 3.48 ± 0.50. No sex differences were found in KOVP (all p >0.4). Independent of sex: knowledge statistically differed by years of experience and place of work; opinion statistically differed by years of experience and sector; and practice statistically differed by years of experience and sector. Less experienced dentists tended to have slightly higher scores (~0.25 on a Likert 1–5 scale). Statistically significant correlations were found between knowledge and practice (r=0.44, p=0.00) and between opinion and value (r=0.35, p=0.00).
The results suggest that, similar to other countries, Andalusian dentists know that sealants are effective, have neutral to positive attitudes toward sealants; though, based on epidemiological studies, underuse sealants. Therefore, methods other than classical behavior change (eg: financial or legal mechanisms) will be required to change practice patterns aimed at improving children's oral health.
Fissure sealants; Dental; Prevention; Children; Oral health
Efficient antigen extraction from vaccines formulated on aluminum hydroxide gels is a critical step for the evaluation of the quality of vaccines following formulation. It has been shown in our laboratory that the efficiency of antigen extraction from vaccines formulated on Alhydrogel decreased significantly with increased storage time. To increase antigen extraction efficiency, the present study determined the effect of surfactants on antigen recovery from vaccine formulations. The Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1) formulated on Alhydrogel and stored at 2-8 °C for three years was used as a model in this study. The AMA1 on Alhydrogel was extracted in the presence or absence of 30 mM sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) or 20 mM cetylpyridinium chloride in the extraction buffer (0.60 M citrate, 0.55 M phosphate, pH 8.5) using our standard antigen extraction protocols. Extracted AMA1 antigen was analyzed by 4-20% Tris-glycine SDS-PAGE followed by silver staining or western blotting. The results showed that inclusion of SDS or cetylpyridinium chloride in extraction buffer increased the antigen recovery dramatically and can be used for efficient characterization of Alhydrogel vaccines.
Alhydrogel; AMA1; extraction; SDS; cetylpyridinium chloride
Adult spermatogonial stem cells (SSCs) represent a distinctive source of stem cells in
mammals for several reasons. First, by giving rise to spermatogenesis, SSCs are
responsible for the propagation of a father's genetic material. As such, autologous SSCs
have been considered for treatment of infertility and other purposes, including correction
of inherited disorders. Second, adult spermatogonia can spontaneously produce
embryonic-like stem cells in vitro, which could be used as an alternative for therapeutic,
diagnostic, or drug discovery strategies for humans. Therefore, an increasing urgency is
driving efforts to understand the biology of SSCs and improve techniques to manipulate
them in vitro as a prerequisite to achieve the aforementioned goals. The characterization
of adult SSCs also requires reproducible methods to isolate and maintain them in long-term
culture. Herein, we describe recent major advances and challenges in propagation of
adult SSCs from mice and humans during the past few years, including the use of unique
cell surface markers and defined cultured conditions.
Enteric fevers remain a common and serious disease, affecting mainly children and adolescents in developing countries. Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi was believed to cause most enteric fever episodes, but several recent reports have shown an increasing incidence of S. Paratyphi A, encouraging the development of a bivalent vaccine to protect against both serovars, especially considering that at present there is no vaccine against S. Paratyphi A. The O-specific polysaccharide (O:2) of S. Paratyphi A is a protective antigen and clinical data have previously demonstrated the potential of using O:2 conjugate vaccines. Here we describe a new conjugation chemistry to link O:2 and the carrier protein CRM197, using the terminus 3-deoxy-D-manno-octulosonic acid (KDO), thus leaving the O:2 chain unmodified. The new conjugates were tested in mice and compared with other O:2-antigen conjugates, synthesized adopting previously described methods that use CRM197 as carrier protein. The newly developed conjugation chemistry yielded immunogenic conjugates with strong serum bactericidal activity against S. Paratyphi A.
The majority of research on obesity has focused primarily on clinical features (eating behavior, adiposity measures), or peripheral appetite-regulatory peptides (leptin, ghrelin). However, recent functional neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that some reward circuitry regions which are associated with appetite-regulatory hormones are also involved in the development and maintenance of obesity. Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS), characterized by hyperphagia and hyperghrelinemia reflecting multi-system dysfunction in inhibitory and satiety mechanisms, serves as an extreme model of genetic obesity. Simple (non-PWS) obesity (OB) represents an obesity control state.
This study investigated subcortical food motivation circuitry and prefrontal inhibitory circuitry functioning in response to food stimuli before and after eating in individuals with PWS compared with OB. We hypothesized that groups would differ in limbic regions (i.e., hypothalamus, amygdala) and prefrontal regions associated with cognitive control [i.e., dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), orbitofrontal cortex (OFC)] after eating.
Design and Participants
Fourteen individuals with PWS, 14 BMI- and age-matched individuals with OB, and 15 age-matched healthy-weight controls (HWC) viewed food and non-food images while undergoing functional MRI before (pre-meal) and after (post-meal) eating. Using SPM8, group contrasts were tested for hypothesized regions: hypothalamus, nucleus accumbens (NAc), amygdala, hippocampus, OFC, medial PFC, and DLPFC.
Compared with OB and HWC, PWS demonstrated higher activity in reward/limbic regions (NAc, amygdala) and lower activity in hypothalamus and hippocampus, in response to food (vs. non-food) images pre-meal. Post-meal, PWS exhibited higher subcortical activation (hypothalamus, amygdala, hippocampus) compared to OB and HWC. OB showed significantly higher activity versus PWS and HWC in cortical regions (DLPFC, OFC) associated with inhibitory control.
In PWS compared with obesity per se, results suggest hyperactivations in subcortical reward circuitry and hypoactivations in cortical inhibitory regions after eating, which provides evidence of neural substrates associated with variable abnormal food motivation phenotypes in PWS and simple obesity.
obesity; DLPFC; inhibition; motivation; fMRI; Prader-Willi syndrome
The default mode network (DMN), one of several resting-state networks (RSN) in the brain, is thought to be involved in self-referential thought, awareness, and episodic memories. Nicotine improves cognitive performance, in part by improving attention. Nicotinic agonists have been shown to decrease activity in regions within DMN and increase activity in regions involved in visual attention during effortful processing of external stimuli. It is unknown if these pharmacological effects also occur in the absence of effortful processing.
This study aims to determine if nicotine suppresses activity in default mode and enhances activity in extra-striate RSNs in the absence of an external visual task.
Within-subject, single-blinded, counterbalanced study of 19 non-smoking subjects who had resting functional MRI scans after 7 mg nicotine or placebo patch. Group independent component analysis was performed. The DMN component was identified by spatial correlation with a reference DMN mask. A visual attention component was identified by spatial correlation with an extra-striate mask. Analyses were conducted using statistical parametric mapping.
Nicotine was associated with decreased activity in regions within the DMN and increased activity in extra-striate regions.
Suppression of DMN and enhancement of extra-striate resting-state activity in the absence of visual stimuli or effortful processing suggest that nicotine’s cognitive effects may involve a shift in activity from networks that process internal to those that process external information. This is a potential mechanism by which cholinergic agonists may have a beneficial effect in diseases associated with altered resting-state activity.
Resting-state networks; Default mode network; Nicotine; Attention; Posterior cingulate; Extra-striate cortex
A Phase 1 dose escalating study was conducted in malaria naïve adults to assess the safety, reactogenicity, and immunogenicity of the blood stage malaria vaccine BSAM2/Alhydrogel®+ CPG 7909. BSAM2 is a combination of the FVO and 3D7 alleles of recombinant AMA1 and MSP142, with equal amounts by weight of each of the four proteins mixed, bound to Alhydrogel®, and administered with the adjuvant CPG 7909. Thirty (30) volunteers were enrolled in two dose groups, with 15 volunteers receiving up to three doses of 40 µg total protein at Days 0, 56, and 180, and 15 volunteers receiving up to three doses of 160 µg protein on the same schedule. Most related adverse events were mild or moderate, but 4 volunteers experienced severe systemic reactions and two were withdrawn from vaccinations due to adverse events. Geometric mean antibody levels after two vaccinations with the high dose formulation were 136 µg/ml for AMA1 and 78 µg/ml for MSP142. Antibody responses were not significantly different in the high dose versus low dose groups and did not further increase after third vaccination. In vitro growth inhibition was demonstrated and was closely correlated with anti-AMA1 antibody responses. A Phase 1b trial in malaria-exposed adults is being conducted.
Medial frontal event-related potentials (ERPs) following rewarding feedback index outcome evaluation. The majority of studies examining the feedback related medial frontal negativity (MFN) employ active tasks during which participants’ responses impact their feedback, however, the MFN has been elicited during passive tasks. Many of the studies examining the MFN show enhanced effects when an error in reward prediction occurs (i.e. expected rewards are not delivered). To clarify the roles of reward prediction error and active responding in producing the MFN, the current study employed a reward prediction design with active and passive task blocks. Following the presentation of a reward predictor, participants (active task) or the computer (passive task) indicated whether participants would receive the outcome associated with a stimulus presented on the left or right of the reward predictor. The MFN was largest when the trial outcome was worse than predicted and that this effect was enhanced when the participant, rather than the computer, made the choice. These results show that both reward prediction error and active choice impact the neural system of outcome monitoring with the largest MFN when the individual’s decision led to the negative outcome.
In cystic fibrosis patients, chronic lung infection with Pseudomonas aeruginosa and the associated decline in lung function are the major cause of mortality. In this report, we show that pyocin S2 displays potent activity against P. aeruginosa biofilms, thus representing a potentially improved therapeutic option. Using an invertebrate model of P. aeruginosa infection, we also show that pyocin S2 is highly active in vivo.
Attentional dysfunction is among the most consistent observations of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). However, the neural nature of this deficit in ASD is still unclear. In this study, we aimed to identify the neurobehavioral correlates of attentional dysfunction in ASD. We used the Attention Network Test-Revised and functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine alerting, orienting, and executive control functions, as well as the neural substrates underlying these attentional functions in unmedicated, high-functioning adults with ASD (n = 12) and matched healthy controls (HC, n = 12). Compared with HC, individuals with ASD showed increased error rates in alerting and executive control, accompanied by lower activity in the mid-frontal gyrus and the caudate nucleus for alerting, and by the absence of significant functional activation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) for executive control. In addition, greater behavioral deficiency in executive control in ASD was correlated with less functional activation of the ACC. These findings of behavioral and neural abnormalities in alerting and executive control of attention in ASD may suggest core attentional deficits, which require further investigation.
Alerting; anterior cingulate cortex; attentional networks; autism; executive control
One hundred thirty-four blaCMY-2 plasmids from Salmonella and Escherichia coli strains from animals and food in Canada were characterized. Five plasmid groups were identified based on replicon type and restriction profiles. Three groups contained E. coli plasmids only. IncA/C plasmids included most multiresistant plasmids and all those of bovine origin.
Perianal extra-mammary Paget's disease is a rare skin disorder of unknown aetiology, which is frequently associated with malignancy. This case report draws attention to this rare condition and comments upon its diagnosis and treatment.
PRESENTATION OF CASE
A 64-year-old otherwise fit man, presented to us in 2006 with one-year-long history of perianal irritation. On examination there was an erythematous discoid skin lesion in the right perianal area. The lesion was excised with wide margins and the defect closed with a local transposition flap. Histology confirmed extra-mammary Paget's disease (EMPD) with a focus of invasion showing a well-differentiated mucinous adenocarcinoma. Adjuvant therapy was not advised. On follow-up in 2011, a small irregular skin lesion, well away from the previous excision site was noted on the left perianal area. Biopsies from this lesion confirmed EMPD with no focus of invasion. Once again wide local excision with closure using local transposition flap was undertaken. Long term follow up has been advised.
The optimal treatment for Perianal Paget's disease (PPD) remains controversial. Surgery is the commonest modality used with wide local excision being the treatment of choice for resectable disease. We report herein a short review of various therapies reported so far in the management of this rare disorder.
A thorough initial evaluation and long-term follow-up is essential to identify recurrence and the development of other related malignancies.
Extramammary Paget's disease; Perianal Paget's disease
Self-associated protein aggregates or cross-linked protein conjugates are, in general, more immunogenic than oligomeric or monomeric forms. In particular, the immunogenicity in mice of a recombinant malaria transmission blocking vaccine candidate, the ookinete specific Plasmodium falciparum 25 kDa protein (Pfs25), was increased more than 1000-fold when evaluated as a chemical cross-linked protein-protein conjugate as compared to a formulated monomer. Whether alternative approaches using protein complexes improve the immunogenicity of other recombinant malaria vaccine candidates is worth assessing. In this work, the immunogenicity of the recombinant 42 kDa processed form of the P. falciparum merozoite surface protein 1 (MSP142) was evaluated as a self-associated, non-covalent aggregate and as a chemical cross-linked protein-protein conjugate to ExoProtein A, which is a recombinant detoxified form of Pseudomonas aeruginosa exotoxin A. MSP142 conjugates were prepared and characterized biochemically and biophysically to determine their molar mass in solution and stoichiometry, when relevant. The immunogenicity of the MSP142 self-associated aggregates, cross-linked chemical conjugates and monomers were compared in BALB/c mice after adsorption to aluminum hydroxide adjuvant, and in one instance in association with the TLR9 agonist CPG7909 with an aluminum hydroxide formulation. Antibody titers were assessed by ELISA. Unlike observations made for Pfs25, no significant enhancement in MSP142 specific antibody titers was observed for any conjugate as compared to the formulated monomer or dimer, except for the addition of the TLR9 agonist CPG7909. Clearly, enhancing the immunogenicity of a recombinant protein vaccine candidate by the formation of protein complexes must be established on an empirical basis.
Plasmodium falciparum apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1) is an asexual blood-stage vaccine candidate against the malaria parasite. AMA1-C1/ISA720 refers to a mixture of recombinant AMA1 proteins representing the FVO and 3D7 alleles in 1:1 mass ratio, formulated with Montanide® ISA 720 as a water-in oil emulsion. In order to develop the AMA1-C1/ISA720 vaccine for human use, it was important to determine the shelf life of this formulation. Previously it was found 267mM glycine stabilized the proteins in Montanide® ISA 720 formulations for a short period of time at 2-8°C, we now test the long term stability of AMA1-C1 at 10 and 40 μg/ml formulated with Montanide® ISA 720 with 50 mM glycine as a stabilizer. Stability of AMA1-C1/ISA720 at different time points following formulation (0, 5, 12 or 18 months) was evaluated by determining the mean particle size (diameter of the mean droplet volume), total protein content by a Modified Lowry assay, identity and integrity using western blot and SDS-PAGE. Our results showed that the mean particle size of these emulsions increased over time, whereas protein content, as determined by an ELISA method using a monoclonal antibody against penta-his, decreased over time. For the 10 μg/ml AMA1-C1/ISA720 vaccine, the protein content with was 6.5 ± 2.2 μg/ml, and for the 40 μg/ml AMA1-C1/ISA720 vaccine, the protein content was only 8.2 ± 2.3 μg/ml after 18 months of storage at 2-8°C. These results suggest that the integrity of the protein was affected by long-term storage. The results of the present study indicate that the AMA1-C1/ISA720 emulsion was unstable after 12 months of storage, after which AMA1-C1 proteins were partially degraded.
Montanide® ISA 720; AMA1; Malaria; Vaccine
The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and frontoinsular cortex (FI) have been implicated in processing information across a variety of domains, including those related to attention and emotion. However, their role in rapid information processing, for example, as required for timely processing of salient stimuli, is not well understood. Here, we designed an emotional face priming paradigm and employed functional magnetic resonance imaging to elucidate their role in these mechanisms. Target faces with either neutral or fearful emotion were briefly primed by either neutral or fearful faces, or by blank ovals. Activation in the pregenual ACC and the FI, together with other regions, such as the amygdala, were preferentially activated in response to fearful face priming, suggesting that these regions are involved in the rapid processing of salient facial emotional information.
anterior cingulate cortex; emotion; fMRI; frontoinsular cortex; priming
3-(2,4-Dimethoxybenzylidene)-anabaseine (DMXB-A) is a partial agonist at α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that has been evaluated clinically for treatment of schizophrenia. The current study examined the effects of DMXB-A on default network activity as a biomarker for drug effects on pathological brain function associated with schizophrenia.
Placebo and two doses of DMXB-A were administered in a random, double-blind crossover design during a one-month Phase-2 study of DMXB-A. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was performed on 16 non-smoking patients with schizophrenia while they performed a simple eye movement task. Independent component analysis was used to identify the default network component. Default network changes were evaluated in the context of a polymorphism in CHRNA7, the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunit gene, which was previously found to be associated with schizophrenia.
Compared to placebo, both 150 mg and 75 mg b.i.d. DMXB-A altered default network activity, including a reduction in posterior cingulate, inferior parietal cortex and medial frontal gyrus activity, and an increase in precuneus activity. The most robust difference, posterior cingulate activity reduction, was affected by CHRNA7 genotype.
The observed DMXB-A-related changes are consistent with improved default network function in schizophrenia. Pharmacogenetic analysis indicates mediation of the effect through the α7-nicotinic receptor. These results further implicate nicotinic cholinergic dysfunction in the disease and suggest that default network activity may be a useful indicator of biologic effects of novel therapeutic agents.
Schizophrenia; functional magnetic resonance imaging; default network; nicotinic receptors; CHRNA7
This study examined the role of temporal orientation and affective frame in the execution of ethical decision-making strategies. In reflecting on a past experience or imagining a future experience, participants thought about experiences that they considered either positive or negative. The participants recorded their thinking about that experience by responding to several questions, and their responses were content-analyzed for the use of ethical decision-making strategies. The findings indicated that a future temporal orientation was associated with greater strategy use. Likewise, a positive affective frame was associated with greater strategy use. Future orientation may permit better strategy execution than a past orientation because it facilitates more objective, balanced contemplation of the reflected-upon situation, and minimizes potential self-threat associated with past behavior. A positive affective frame likely improves strategy execution because it facilitates active analysis of the experience. Future directions and implications of these findings are discussed.
Affective Framing; Ethical Decision-Making; Metacognitive Strategies; Sensemaking; Temporal Orientation
The error-related negativity (ERN) is thought to index an anterior cingulate (ACC) behavioral monitoring system. The feedback ERN (FRN) is elicited to error feedback when the correct response is not known, but also when a choice outcome is suboptimal and to passive reward prediction violation, suggesting that the monitoring system may not be restricted to actions. This study used principal components analysis to show that the ERN consists of a single central component while the reward prediction violation FRN is comprised of central and prefrontal components. A prefrontal component is also present in action monitoring but occurs later, at the Error Positivity latency. This suggests that ACC monitors both actions and events for reward prediction error. Prefrontal cortex may update reward expectation based on the prediction violation with the latency difference due to differential processing time for motor and perceptual information.
Error-Related Negativity; Feedback-Related Negativity; Behavior Monitoring; Reward Prediction Violation; Anterior Cingulate Cortex
Cognitive strategies typically involved in regulating negative emotions have recently been shown to also be effective with positive emotions associated with monetary rewards. However, it is less clear how these strategies influence behavior, such as preferences expressed during decision-making under risk, and the underlying neural circuitry. That is, can the effective use of emotion regulation strategies during presentation of a reward-conditioned stimulus influence decision-making under risk and neural structures involved in reward processing such as the striatum? To investigate this question, we asked participants to engage in imagery-focused regulation strategies during the presentation of a cue that preceded a financial decision-making phase. During the decision phase, participants then made a choice between a risky and a safe monetary lottery. Participants who successfully used cognitive regulation, as assessed by subjective ratings about perceived success and facility in implementation of strategies, made fewer risky choices in comparison to trials where decisions were made in the absence of cognitive regulation. Additionally, blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) responses in the striatum were attenuated during decision-making as a function of successful emotion regulation. These findings suggest that exerting cognitive control over emotional responses can modulate neural responses associated with reward processing (e.g., striatum), and promote more goal-directed decision-making (e.g., less risky choices), illustrating the potential importance of cognitive strategies in curbing risk-seeking behaviors before they become maladaptive (e.g., substance abuse).
Reward; emotion regulation; reappraisal; risk; addiction; striatum; insula; dopamine; decision-making; fMRI
The heterotrophic dinoflagellate Oxyrrhis marina is increasingly studied in experimental, ecological and evolutionary contexts. Its basal phylogenetic position within the dinoflagellates make O. marina useful for understanding the origin of numerous unusual features of the dinoflagellate lineage; its broad distribution has lent O. marina to the study of protist biogeography; and nutritive flexibility and eurytopy have made it a common lab rat for the investigation of physiological responses of marine heterotrophic flagellates. Nevertheless, genome-scale resources for O. marina are scarce. Here we present a 454-based transcriptome survey for this organism. In addition, we assess sequence read abundance, as a proxy for gene expression, in response to salinity, an environmental factor potentially important in determining O. marina spatial distributions.
Sequencing generated ~57 Mbp of data which assembled into 7, 398 contigs. Approximately 24% of contigs were nominally identified by BLAST. A further clustering of contigs (at ≥ 90% identity) revealed 164 transcript variant clusters, the largest of which (Phosphoribosylaminoimidazole-succinocarboxamide synthase) was composed of 28 variants displaying predominately synonymous variation. In a genomic context, a sample of 5 different genes were demonstrated to occur as tandem repeats, separated by short (~200-340 bp) inter-genic regions. For HSP90 several intergenic variants were detected suggesting a potentially complex genomic arrangement. In response to salinity, analysis of 454 read abundance highlighted 9 and 20 genes over or under expressed at 50 PSU, respectively. However, 454 read abundance and subsequent qPCR validation did not correlate well - suggesting that measures of gene expression via ad hoc analysis of sequence read abundance require careful interpretation.
Here we indicate that tandem gene arrangements and the occurrence of multiple transcribed gene variants are common and indicate potentially complex genomic arrangements in O. marina. Comparison of the reported data set with existing O. marina and other dinoflagellates ESTs indicates little sequence overlap likely as a result of the relatively limited extent of genome scale sequence data currently available for the dinoflagellates. This is one of the first 454-based transcriptome surveys of an ancestral dinoflagellate taxon and will undoubtedly prove useful for future comparative studies aimed at reconstructing the origin of novel features of the dinoflagellates.
Optimal tuberculosis testing usually involves sputum centrifugation followed by broth culture. However, centrifuges are biohazardous and scarce in the resource-limited settings where most tuberculosis occurs. To optimize tuberculosis testing for these settings, centrifugation of 111 decontaminated sputum samples was compared with syringe-aspiration through polycarbonate membrane-filters that were then cultured in broth. To reduce the workload of repeated microscopic screening of broth cultures for tuberculosis growth, the colorimetric redox indicator 2,3-diphenyl-5-(2-thienyl) tetrazolium chloride was added to the broth, which enabled naked-eye detection of culture positivity. This combination of filtration and colorimetric growth-detection gave similar results to sputum centrifugation followed by culture microscopy regarding mean colony counts (43 versus 48; P = 0.6), contamination rates (0.9% versus 1.8%; P = 0.3), and sensitivity (94% versus 95%; P = 0.7), suggesting equivalency of the two methods. By obviating centrifugation and repeated microscopic screening of cultures, this approach may constitute a more appropriate technology for rapid and sensitive tuberculosis diagnosis in basic laboratories.
Typhoid fever causes more than 21 million cases of disease and 200,000 deaths yearly worldwide, with more than 90% of the disease burden being reported from Asia. Epidemiological data show high disease incidence in young children and suggest that immunization programs should target children below two years of age: this is not possible with available vaccines. The Novartis Vaccines Institute for Global Health developed a conjugate vaccine (Vi-CRM197) for infant vaccination concomitantly with EPI vaccines, either starting at 6 weeks with DTP or at 9 months with measles vaccine. We report the results from a Phase 1 and a Phase 2 dose ranging trial with Vi-CRM197 in European adults.
Following randomized blinded comparison of single vaccination with either Vi-CRM197 or licensed polysaccharide vaccines (both containing 25·0 µg of Vi antigen), a randomised observer blinded dose ranging trial was performed in the same center to compare three concentrations of Vi-CRM197 (1·25 µg, 5·0 µg and 12·5 µg of Vi antigen) with the polysaccharide vaccine.
All vaccines were well tolerated. Compared to the polysaccharide vaccine, Vi-CRM197 induced a higher incidence of mild to moderate short lasting local pain. All Vi-CRM197 formulations induced higher Vi antibody levels compared to licensed control, with clear dose response relationship.
Vi-CRM197 did not elicit safety concerns, was highly immunogenic and is therefore suitable for further clinical testing in endemic populations of South Asia.
ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01123941 NCT01193907
Typhoid fever remains a major health problem in developing countries. Young children are at high risk, and a vaccine effective for this age group is urgently needed. Purified capsular polysaccharide from Salmonella enterica serovar Typhi (Vi) is licensed as a vaccine, providing 50 to 70% protection in individuals older than 5 years. However, this vaccine is ineffective in infants. Vi conjugated to a carrier protein (i.e., an exoprotein A mutant from Pseudomonas aeruginosa [rEPA]) is highly immunogenic, provides long-term protection, and shows more than 90% protective efficacy in children 2 to 5 years old. Here, we describe an alternative glycoconjugate vaccine for S. Typhi, Vi-CRM197, where Vi was obtained from Citrobacter freundii WR7011 and CRM197, the mutant diphtheria toxin protein, was used as the carrier. We investigated the optimization of growth conditions for Vi production from C. freundii WR7011 and the immunogenicity of Vi-CRM197 conjugates in mice. The optimal saccharide/protein ratio of the glycoconjugates was identified for the best antibody production. We also demonstrated the ability of this new vaccine to protect mice against challenge with Vi-positive Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium.
Inhibition of parasite growth is a major objective of blood-stage malaria vaccines. The in vitro assay of parasite growth inhibitory activity (GIA) is widely used as a surrogate marker for malaria vaccine efficacy in the down-selection of candidate blood-stage vaccines. Here we report the first study to examine the relationship between in vivo Plasmodium falciparum growth rates and in vitro GIA in humans experimentally infected with blood-stage malaria.
In this phase I/IIa open-label clinical trial five healthy malaria-naive volunteers were immunised with AMA1/C1-Alhydrogel+CPG 7909, and together with three unvaccinated controls were challenged by intravenous inoculation of P. falciparum infected erythrocytes.
A significant correlation was observed between parasite multiplication rate in 48 hours (PMR) and both vaccine-induced growth-inhibitory activity (Pearson r = −0.93 [95% CI: −1.0, −0.27] P = 0.02) and AMA1 antibody titres in the vaccine group (Pearson r = −0.93 [95% CI: −0.99, −0.25] P = 0.02). However immunisation failed to reduce overall mean PMR in the vaccine group in comparison to the controls (vaccinee 16 fold [95% CI: 12, 22], control 17 fold [CI: 0, 65] P = 0.70). Therefore no impact on pre-patent period was observed (vaccine group median 8.5 days [range 7.5–9], control group median 9 days [range 7–9]).
Despite the first observation in human experimental malaria infection of a significant association between vaccine-induced in vitro growth inhibitory activity and in vivo parasite multiplication rate, this did not translate into any observable clinically relevant vaccine effect in this small group of volunteers.
Single nucleotide allelic variants in the promoter region of the chromosome 15 alpha-7 acetylcholine nicotinic receptor gene (CHRNA7) are associated with both schizophrenia and the P50 auditory evoked potential sensory gating deficit. The purpose of this study was to determine if CHRNA7 promoter allelic variants are also associated with abnormal P50 ratios in persons with schizoaffective disorder, bipolar type.
P50 auditory evoked potentials were recorded in a paired stimulus paradigm in 17 subjects with schizoaffective disorder, bipolar type. The P50 test to conditioning ratio was used as the measure of sensory gating. Mutation screening of the CHRNA7 promoter region was performed on the subjects’ DNA samples. Comparisons to previously obtained data from persons with schizophrenia and controls were made.
Subjects with schizophrenia, regardless of allele status, had an abnormal mean P50 ratio. Subjects with schizoaffective disorder, bipolar type and a variant allele had an abnormal mean P50 ratio, whereas those schizoaffective subjects with the common alleles had a normal mean P50 ratio. Normal control subjects had a normal mean ratio, but controls with variant alleles had higher P50 ratios.
In persons with bipolar type schizoaffective disorder, CHRNA7 promoter region allelic variants are linked to the capacity to inhibit the P50 auditory evoked potential and thus are associated with a type of illness genetically and biologically more similar to schizophrenia.
schizophrenia; bipolar disorder; chromosomes; human; pair 15; receptors; nicotinic; evoked potentials; auditory