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1.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-925897

ABSTRACT

We investigated the kinetics of the neutralizing antibody responses to the severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 delta variant over the course of 1 year in 16 patients infected at the beginning of the pandemic. In patients with severe disease, neutralizing responses to the delta variant were detectable, albeit at lower levels than responses to the wild type. Neutralizing responses to the delta variant were undetectable, however, in asymptomatic persons. This finding implies that the vaccination strategy for persons with past natural infection should depend on the severity of the previous infection.

2.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-925892

ABSTRACT

Background@#The relationship between changes in anxiety levels and personal protective equipment (PPE) use is yet to be evaluated. The present study assessed this relationship among healthcare workers (HCWs) involved in the care of patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). @*Methods@#An online survey was conducted in a municipal hospital with 195 nationally designated negative pressure isolation units in Korea. Anxiety level was measured using the self-rating anxiety scale (SAS), and changes in anxiety levels were assessed based on the time when COVID-19 vaccine was introduced in March 2021 in Korea. Monthly PPE usage between June 2020 and May 2021 was investigated. @*Results@#The mean SAS score (33.25 ± 5.97) was within normal range and was lower than those reported in previous studies conducted before COVID-19 vaccination became available.Among the 93 HCWs who participated, 64 (68.8%) answered that their fear of contracting COVID-19 decreased after vaccination. The number of coveralls used per patient decreased from 33.6 to 0. However, a demand for more PPE than necessary was observed in situations where HCWs were exposed to body fluids and secretions (n = 38, 40.9%). Excessive demand for PPE was not related to age, working experience, or SAS score. @*Conclusion@#Anxiety in HCWs exposed to COVID-19 was lower than it was during the early period of the pandemic, and the period before vaccination was introduced. The number of coveralls used per patient also decreased although an excessive demand for PPE was observed.

3.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-900032

ABSTRACT

Applying work restrictions for asymptomatic healthcare personnel (HCP) with potential exposure to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is recommended to prevent transmission from potentially contagious HCP to patients and other HCP. However, it can lead to understaffing, which threatens the safety of both patients and HCP. We evaluated 203 COVID-19 exposure events at a single tertiary hospital from January 2020 to June 2021. A total of 2,365 HCP were potentially exposed, and work restrictions were imposed on 320 HCP, leading to the loss of 3,311 working days. However, only one of the work-restricted HCP was confirmed with COVID-19. During the study period, the work restriction measures might be taken excessively compared to their benefit, so establishing more effective standards for work restriction is required.

4.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-900023

ABSTRACT

Understanding the long-term kinetics of antibodies in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is essential in interpreting serosurvey data. We investigated the antibody response one year after infection in 52 mildly symptomatic patients with severe acute respiratory syndromecoronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection, using three commercial immunoassays and a surrogate virus neutralization test (sVNT) kit. Anti-N pan-immunoglobulin (Ig), anti-S IgG, and anti-S1 IgG were detected in 43 (82.7%), 44 (84.6%), and 30 (57.7%), respectively. In 49 (94.2%), the antibody could be detected by either anti-N pan-Ig or anti-S IgG assay. In the sVNT, 30 (57.7%) had positive neutralizing activity. Despite waning immunity, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies can be detected up to one year after infection, even in mild COVID-19 patients.

5.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-899964

ABSTRACT

Background@#Remdesivir is widely used for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but controversies regarding its efficacy still remain. @*Methods@#A retrospective cohort study was conducted to evaluate the effect of remdesivir on clinical and virologic outcomes of severe COVID-19 patients from June to July 2020. Primary clinical endpoints included clinical recovery, additional mechanical ventilator (MV) support, and duration of oxygen or MV support. Viral load reduction by hospital day (HD) 15 was evaluated by calculating changes in cycle threshold (Ct) values. @*Results@#A total of 86 severe COVID-19 patients were evaluated including 48 remdesivirtreated patients. Baseline characteristics were not significantly different between the two groups. Remdesivir was administered an average of 7.42 days from symptom onset. The proportions of clinical recovery of the remdesivir and supportive care group at HD 14 (56.3% and 39.5%) and HD 28 (87.5% and 78.9%) were not statistically different. The proportion of patients requiring MV support by HD 28 was significantly lower in the remdesivir group than in the supportive care group (22.9% vs. 44.7%, P = 0.032), and MV duration was significantly shorter in the remdesivir group (average, 1.97 vs. 5.37 days; P = 0.017). Analysis of upper respiratory tract specimens demonstrated that increases of Ct value from HD 1–5 to 11–15 were significantly greater in the remdesivir group than the supportive care group (average, 10.19 vs. 5.36; P = 0.007), and the slope of the Ct value increase was also significantly steeper in the remdesivir group (average, 5.10 vs. 2.68; P = 0.007). @*Conclusion@#The remdesivir group showed clinical and virologic benefit in terms of MV requirement and viral load reduction, supporting remdesivir treatment for severe COVID-19.

6.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-899841

ABSTRACT

We evaluated the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test for the diagnosis of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) compared to the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test.We applied both tests to patients who were about to be hospitalized, had visited an emergency room, or had been admitted due to COVID-19 confirmed by RT-PCR. Two nasopharyngeal swabs were obtained; one was tested by RT-PCR and the other by the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test. A total of 118 pairs of tests from 98 patients were performed between January 5 and 11, 2021. The overall sensitivity and specificity for detecting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) for the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test compared to RT-PCR were 17.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 8.8–32.0%) and 100% (95% CI, 95.3–100.0%). Analysis of the results using RT-PCR cycle thresholds of ≤ 30 or ≤ 25 increased the sensitivity to 26.9% (95% CI, 13.7–46.1%), and 41.1% (95% CI, 21.6–64.0%), respectively.

7.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-892328

ABSTRACT

Applying work restrictions for asymptomatic healthcare personnel (HCP) with potential exposure to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is recommended to prevent transmission from potentially contagious HCP to patients and other HCP. However, it can lead to understaffing, which threatens the safety of both patients and HCP. We evaluated 203 COVID-19 exposure events at a single tertiary hospital from January 2020 to June 2021. A total of 2,365 HCP were potentially exposed, and work restrictions were imposed on 320 HCP, leading to the loss of 3,311 working days. However, only one of the work-restricted HCP was confirmed with COVID-19. During the study period, the work restriction measures might be taken excessively compared to their benefit, so establishing more effective standards for work restriction is required.

8.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-892319

ABSTRACT

Understanding the long-term kinetics of antibodies in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is essential in interpreting serosurvey data. We investigated the antibody response one year after infection in 52 mildly symptomatic patients with severe acute respiratory syndromecoronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection, using three commercial immunoassays and a surrogate virus neutralization test (sVNT) kit. Anti-N pan-immunoglobulin (Ig), anti-S IgG, and anti-S1 IgG were detected in 43 (82.7%), 44 (84.6%), and 30 (57.7%), respectively. In 49 (94.2%), the antibody could be detected by either anti-N pan-Ig or anti-S IgG assay. In the sVNT, 30 (57.7%) had positive neutralizing activity. Despite waning immunity, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies can be detected up to one year after infection, even in mild COVID-19 patients.

9.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-919181

ABSTRACT

Background/Aims@#This study aimed to assess the association between local and systemic reactogenicity and humoral immunogenicity after severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) vaccination. @*Methods@#Adverse events were prospectively evaluated using an electronic diary in 135 healthy adults who received a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (AZD1222, AstraZeneca/Oxford, n = 42; or BNT162b2, Pfizer/BioNTech, n = 93). We semi-quantitatively measured anti-S1 immunoglobulin G (IgG) using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay at baseline, 3 weeks after the first dose of AZD1222 or BNT162b2, and 2 weeks after the second dose of BNT162b2. We evaluated the association between the maximum grade of local or systemic adverse events and the anti-S1 IgG optical density using multivariate linear regression with adjustment for age, sex, and use of antipyretics. @*Results@#The median age of the 135 vaccinees was 30 years (36 years in the AZD1222 group and 29 years in the BNT162b2 group) and 25.9% were male (9.5% in the AZD1222 group and 33.3% in the BNT162b2 group). Local and systemic adverse events were generally comparable after the first dose of AZD1222 and the second dose of BNT162b2. The grades of local and systemic adverse events were not significantly associated with anti-S1 IgG levels in the AZD1222 or BNT162b2 group. @*Conclusions@#Local and systemic reactogenicity may not be associated with humoral immunogenicity after SARS-CoV-2 vaccination.

10.
Infection and Chemotherapy ; : 776-785, 2021.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-914608

ABSTRACT

Background@#Co-infection with bacteria and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 may result in greater use of healthcare resources and a poor prognosis. Therefore, early selection and use of optimal antibiotics are essential. The direct rapid antibiotic susceptibility test (dRAST) can detect antibiotic resistance within 6 h of a Gram smear result. This study aimed to assess the effectiveness of dRAST for improving early selection of appropriate antibiotics for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients with bacteremia. @*Materials and Methods@#This retrospective study included 96 blood culture-positive COVID-19 patients. Bacterial isolates and antimicrobial resistance profiles of each case were evaluated. Cases were divided into two groups based on whether they underwent conventional antibiotic susceptibility test (AST) or dRAST. The time to optimal targeted treatment for the two groups was investigated and compared. In addition, we examined the proportion of cases for which appropriate antibiotics were selected and broad spectrum antibiotics were administered at 72 h from blood sample collection. @*Results@#The mean time to optimal targeted antibiotic treatment was shorter for the dRAST group [55.7; standard deviation (SD), 28.7 vs. 92.3; SD, 51.1 h; P = 0.041]. The proportion of cases receiving optimal targeted antibiotics 72 h after blood collection for culture was higher [6/10 (60.0%) vs. 10/25 (40.0%)] and the percentage receiving broad spectrum antibiotics at 72 h was lower [6/10 (60.0%) vs. 19/25 (76.0%)] in the dRAST group than in the conventional AST group. In terms of microbiology profile, the contamination rate was high (35.5%) and multidrug-resistant strains were common (63.2%) in COVID-19 patients with bacteremia. @*Conclusion@#Application of dRAST for selection of antibiotics to treat bacteremia in COVID-19 patients may enable earlier and optimal treatment. The high incidence of contamination and resistant organisms in blood cultures from COVID-19 patients suggest that dRAST may speed up appropriate targeted treatment.

11.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-892260

ABSTRACT

Background@#Remdesivir is widely used for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but controversies regarding its efficacy still remain. @*Methods@#A retrospective cohort study was conducted to evaluate the effect of remdesivir on clinical and virologic outcomes of severe COVID-19 patients from June to July 2020. Primary clinical endpoints included clinical recovery, additional mechanical ventilator (MV) support, and duration of oxygen or MV support. Viral load reduction by hospital day (HD) 15 was evaluated by calculating changes in cycle threshold (Ct) values. @*Results@#A total of 86 severe COVID-19 patients were evaluated including 48 remdesivirtreated patients. Baseline characteristics were not significantly different between the two groups. Remdesivir was administered an average of 7.42 days from symptom onset. The proportions of clinical recovery of the remdesivir and supportive care group at HD 14 (56.3% and 39.5%) and HD 28 (87.5% and 78.9%) were not statistically different. The proportion of patients requiring MV support by HD 28 was significantly lower in the remdesivir group than in the supportive care group (22.9% vs. 44.7%, P = 0.032), and MV duration was significantly shorter in the remdesivir group (average, 1.97 vs. 5.37 days; P = 0.017). Analysis of upper respiratory tract specimens demonstrated that increases of Ct value from HD 1–5 to 11–15 were significantly greater in the remdesivir group than the supportive care group (average, 10.19 vs. 5.36; P = 0.007), and the slope of the Ct value increase was also significantly steeper in the remdesivir group (average, 5.10 vs. 2.68; P = 0.007). @*Conclusion@#The remdesivir group showed clinical and virologic benefit in terms of MV requirement and viral load reduction, supporting remdesivir treatment for severe COVID-19.

12.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-892137

ABSTRACT

We evaluated the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test for the diagnosis of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) compared to the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test.We applied both tests to patients who were about to be hospitalized, had visited an emergency room, or had been admitted due to COVID-19 confirmed by RT-PCR. Two nasopharyngeal swabs were obtained; one was tested by RT-PCR and the other by the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test. A total of 118 pairs of tests from 98 patients were performed between January 5 and 11, 2021. The overall sensitivity and specificity for detecting severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) for the Standard Q COVID-19 Ag test compared to RT-PCR were 17.5% (95% confidence interval [CI], 8.8–32.0%) and 100% (95% CI, 95.3–100.0%). Analysis of the results using RT-PCR cycle thresholds of ≤ 30 or ≤ 25 increased the sensitivity to 26.9% (95% CI, 13.7–46.1%), and 41.1% (95% CI, 21.6–64.0%), respectively.

13.
Korean Journal of Medicine ; : 364-369, 2020.
Article in Korean | WPRIM | ID: wpr-902228

ABSTRACT

In December 2019, a new strain of betacoronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, which causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), emerged in Wuhan, China. Subsequently, the virus quickly spread worldwide and the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. In response to the pandemic, many researchers are working on repurposing existing drugs to alter the course of severe COVID-19, and are testing experimental treatments. Among antiviral agents, remdesivir, an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase inhibitor, showed clinical benefit in a randomized clinical trial. In October 2020, the Food and Drug Administration approved remdesivir for treating hospitalized patients with COVID-19, making it the first drug approved for the disease. The race to produce safe, effective vaccines is also progressing at unprecedented speed, with over 200 under development and 45 candidates already being tested in human clinical trials (as of October 2020).

14.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-899811

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND@#Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is an emerging infectious disease with high mortality in East Asia. This study aimed to develop, for primary care providers, a prediction score using initial symptoms and basic laboratory blood tests to differentiate between SFTS and other endemic zoonoses in Korea.@*METHODS@#Patients aged ≥ 18 years diagnosed with endemic zoonoses during a 3-year period (between January 2015 and December 2017) were retrospectively enrolled from 4 tertiary university hospitals. A prediction score was built based on multivariate logistic regression analyses.@*RESULTS@#Of 84 patients, 35 with SFTS and 49 with other endemic zoonoses were enrolled. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, independent predictors of SFTS included neurologic symptoms (odds ratio [OR], 12.915; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.173–76.747), diarrhea (OR, 10.306; 95% CI, 1.588–66.895), leukopenia (< 4,000/mm3) (OR, 19.400; 95% CI, 3.290–114.408), and normal C-reactive protein (< 0.5 mg/dL) (OR, 24.739; 95% CI, 1.812–337.742). We set up a prediction score by assigning one point to each of these four predictors. A score of ≥ 2 had 82.9% sensitivity (95% CI, 71.7%–87.5%) and 95.9% specificity (95% CI, 88.0%–99.2%). The area under the curve of the clinical prediction score was 0.950 (95% CI, 0.903–0.997).@*CONCLUSION@#This study finding suggests a simple and useful scoring system to predict SFTS in patients with endemic zoonoses. We expect this strategic approach to facilitate early differentiation of SFTS from other endemic zoonoses, especially by primary care providers, and to improve the clinical outcomes.

15.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-899772

ABSTRACT

Novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) is found to cause a large outbreak started from Wuhan since December 2019 in China and SARS-CoV-2 infections have been reported with epidemiological linkage to China in 25 countries until now. We isolated SARS-CoV-2 from the oropharyngeal sample obtained from the patient with the first laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection in Korea. Cytopathic effects of SARS-CoV-2 in the Vero cell cultures were confluent 3 days after the first blind passage of the sample. Coronavirus was confirmed with spherical particle having a fringe reminiscent of crown on transmission electron microscopy. Phylogenetic analyses of whole genome sequences showed that it clustered with other SARS-CoV-2 reported from Wuhan.

16.
Article in English | WPRIM | ID: wpr-899753

ABSTRACT

In December 2019, a viral pneumonia outbreak caused by a novel betacoronavirus, the 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), began in Wuhan, China. We report the epidemiological and clinical features of the first patient with 2019-nCoV pneumonia imported into Korea from Wuhan. This report suggests that in the early phase of 2019-nCoV pneumonia, chest radiography would miss patients with pneumonia and highlights taking travel history is of paramount importance for early detection and isolation of 2019-nCoV cases.

17.
Korean Journal of Medicine ; : 364-369, 2020.
Article in Korean | WPRIM | ID: wpr-894524

ABSTRACT

In December 2019, a new strain of betacoronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, which causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), emerged in Wuhan, China. Subsequently, the virus quickly spread worldwide and the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. In response to the pandemic, many researchers are working on repurposing existing drugs to alter the course of severe COVID-19, and are testing experimental treatments. Among antiviral agents, remdesivir, an RNA-dependent RNA polymerase inhibitor, showed clinical benefit in a randomized clinical trial. In October 2020, the Food and Drug Administration approved remdesivir for treating hospitalized patients with COVID-19, making it the first drug approved for the disease. The race to produce safe, effective vaccines is also progressing at unprecedented speed, with over 200 under development and 45 candidates already being tested in human clinical trials (as of October 2020).

18.
Infection and Chemotherapy ; : 381-388, 2020.
Article | WPRIM | ID: wpr-834282

ABSTRACT

Background@#Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF)-induced nephrotoxicity is related to high plasma tenofovir concentrations. Tenofovir alafenamide (TAF) is a tenofovir prodrug with 90% lower plasma tenofovir concentrations. The aim of this study was to evaluate changes in tenofovir-induced nephrotoxicity in Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)-positive patients who switched from TDF to TAF. @*Materials and Methods@#We identified all HIV-positive patients who switched from elvitegravir/cobicistat/emtricitabine/TDF to elvitegravir/cobicistat/emtricitabine/TAF at a tertiary hospital. We assessed tubulopathy and renal dysfunction before TDF administration, at the time TAF was used following at least 3 months of TDF use, and 3 months after TAF administration. Tubulopathy was defined by the presence of at least three abnormalities in fractional excretion of phosphate, fractional excretion of uric acid, urinary β2-microglobulin, urinary N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase, glucosuria or proteinuria. Renal dysfunction was defined as decreased by more than 25% in the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) relative to baseline. @*Results@#In 80 patients, the mean eGFR was 96.8 mL/min/1.73 m 2 before administration of TDF, 81.2 (P <0.001) at the time of change to TAF, 90.9 (P <0.001) after TAF administration.Renal dysfunction occurred in 19 patients (23.8%) after TDF use for a median 15 months, 11 (57.9%) of these patients recovered from renal dysfunction after TAF administration.Six patients (7.5%) had tubulopathy before TDF administration, 36 (45.0%) after TDF administration (P <0.001), 12 (15.0%) after TAF administration (P = 0.002). @*Conclusion@#Tenofovir-induced nephrotoxicity in HIV-positive patients receiving TDF was mostly reversible after changing to TAF. Thus, TAF-containing regimens can be administered safely to HIV-positive patients with tenofovir-induced nephrotoxicity.

19.
Article | WPRIM | ID: wpr-831791

ABSTRACT

Background/Aims@#As the novel coronavirus (coronavirus disease 2019 [COVID-19]) outbreak progresses rapidly, staying home is recommended for suspected patients; however, the safety of this recommendation is uncertain. In Korea, non-hospital facilities called “living and treatment centers (LTCs)” have been established since 5 March 2020. The LTCs provided a unique opportunity to evaluate the safety of selection criteria for low-risk groups. @*Methods@#Between 5 March and 9 April 2020, patients with COVID-19 who met the following criteria were admitted to the LTC; alert, age below 65 years old, no underlying disease or well-controlled underlying disease, body temperature below 38.0°C, whether taking antipyretics or not, and no dyspnea. Patients were closely observed by doctors or nurses’ interviews twice a day and transferred to hospitals when symptoms worsened. @*Results@#A total of 113 patients were admitted to the LTC; 52.2% were female, with a median age of 25 years (interquartile range, 21.5 to 39.5). Of 113 patients, 54 (47.8%) were asymptomatic at diagnosis, and 15 (13.3%) had no symptoms until they were released from isolation. During the follow-up period, two (1.8%) patients were transferred to a hospital but did not progress to severe status during hospitalization. @*Conclusions@#The risk of progression was negligible in COVID-19 patients who met the admission criteria for LTC at the time of diagnosis. LTCs could be a safe alternative considering shortage of hospital beds.

20.
Article | WPRIM | ID: wpr-831790

ABSTRACT

Background/Aims@#As the coronavirus disease-2019 global pandemic progresses, screening of antiviral agents effective against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is urgently needed. In addition, considering the viral load kinetics of SARS-CoV-2, which peaks early in the illness, and the massive burden of the disease, which may increase in the near future, identifying well-tolerated oral antivirals becomes increasingly important. We examined the in vitro activity of lopinavir/ritonavir and hydroxychloroquine on SARS-CoV-2, at concentrations which can be used to treat coronavirus-19 patients with little concern of toxicity. @*Methods@#Lopinavir/ritonavir (7/1.75 μg/mL), hydroxychloroquine base (1 or 2 μg/mL), or a combination thereof were administered 1 hour after the inoculation of SARS-CoV-2 to Vero cells at a multiplicity of infection of 0.05. We examined cytopathic effects of virus 48 hours after administration of the respective treatments and measured viral loads at three time points (0, 24, and 48 hours post-treatment) by quantitative real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, and compared the results obtained from the different antiviral regimens tested. @*Results@#The severity of cytopathic effects was lower in lopinavir/ritonavir-treated cells, and viral load was significantly reduced in this group compared with the control group (p < 0.001). However, hydroxychloroquine did not show significant inhibitory effects on anti-SARS-CoV-2-mediated cytotoxicity or on viral load at either concentration. @*Conclusions@#Lopinavir/ritonavir showed significant inhibitory effects on SARS-CoV-2 in vitro at its usual plasma concentration. However, the in vitro antiviral activity of hydroxychloroquine at concentrations commonly used in humans was minimal, whether used alone or in combination with lopinavir/ritonavir.

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