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1.
Panminerva Med ; 2022 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1876385

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Since the beginning of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, millions of people have been infected and died. Different therapeutic approaches have been recommended, but only a few have shown clinical advantages. Low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) has been recommended to prevent COVID-19-related thrombo-embolic events. We aim to evaluate the impact of early treatment with LMWH on hospital admission and death in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection. METHODS: We conducted an observational monocentric retrospective study to evaluate the preventive role of LMWH on the mortality rate of COVID-19 patients. SARS-CoV-2 infected patients were recruited from the beginning of the Italian epidemic to March 31st, 2021. We excluded patients with missing data and those chronically exposed to LMWH. Treatment prescription was based on international and national guidelines and modified depending on clinical presentation and drug-drug interactions. RESULTS: of 734 SARS-CoV-2 infected patients were recruited, with 357 (48.6%) males and a median (IQR) age of 77.9 (65-85.7) years. 77.5% of people developed SARS-CoV-2-related symptoms and 62.8% were admitted to the hospital, and 20.2% died. Four hundred ninety-two (67%) started LMWH. In particular, 296 (40.3%) were treated within five days since symptoms onset. At logistic regression, early LMWH therapy was associated with lower mortality. Furthermore, remdesivir treatment showed a lower risk of death. On the contrary, age, BMI >30Kg/m2, neurological diseases, fever or dyspnea were associated with an increased risk of death. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, early treatment with LMWH was associated with lower mortality in our cohort. Further studies are needed to better assess the role of wider LMWH administration in terms of timing and regimen dose.

2.
Healthcare ; 10(5):956, 2022.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1857180

ABSTRACT

Objectives: Our study aimed to evaluate the usefulness of Vitamin D3 (VitD3) among patients hospitalized for COVID-19. The primary endpoint was to evaluate the difference in survival rates between patients receiving and not VitD3. The secondary endpoints were to evaluate clinical outcomes, such as needing non-invasive ventilation (NIV), ICU transfer, and laboratory findings (inflammatory parameters). Methods: We conducted a retrospective, monocentric matched-cohort study, including patients attending our ward for COVID-19. Patients were divided into two groups depending on VitD3 administration (Group A) or not (Group B) among patients with low VitD levels (defined as blood levels < 30 ng/mL), which depended on physicians' judgment. Our internal protocol provides VitD3 100,000 UI/daily for two days. Findings: 58 patients were included in Group A, and 58 in Group B. Patients were matched for age, sex, comorbidities, COVID-19-related symptoms, PaO2/FiO2 ratio, blood exams, and medical treatments. Regarding the principal endpoint, there was a statistically significant difference between the two groups in survival rates [Group A vs. Group B = 3 vs. 11 (p = 0.042)]. When considering secondary endpoints, Group A patients were less likely to undergo NIV [Group A vs. Group B = 12 vs. 23 (p = 0.026)] and showed an improvement in almost all inflammatory parameters. Conclusions: The link between VitD3 deficiency and the clinical course of COVID-19 during hospitalization suggests that VitD3 level is a useful prognostic marker. Considering the safety of supplementation and the low cost, VitD3 replacement should be considered among SARS-CoV-2 infected patients needing hospitalization.

3.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 5736, 2022 04 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1778634

ABSTRACT

The aims of this study were to characterize new SARS-CoV-2 genomes sampled all over Italy and to reconstruct the origin and the evolutionary dynamics in Italy and Europe between February and June 2020. The cluster analysis showed only small clusters including < 80 Italian isolates, while most of the Italian strains were intermixed in the whole tree. Pure Italian clusters were observed mainly after the lockdown and distancing measures were adopted. Lineage B and B.1 spread between late January and early February 2020, from China to Veneto and Lombardy, respectively. Lineage B.1.1 (20B) most probably evolved within Italy and spread from central to south Italian regions, and to European countries. The lineage B.1.1.1 (20D) developed most probably in other European countries entering Italy only in the second half of March and remained localized in Piedmont until June 2020. In conclusion, within the limitations of phylogeographical reconstruction, the estimated ancestral scenario suggests an important role of China and Italy in the widespread diffusion of the D614G variant in Europe in the early phase of the pandemic and more dispersed exchanges involving several European countries from the second half of March 2020.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Europe/epidemiology , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Phylogeography , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
4.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-323144

ABSTRACT

Background: Interleukin 6 (IL-6) is a proinflammatory cytokine that is secreted by cells infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and it is widely recognized as a negative prognostic factor. The purpose of this study was to analyze the correlations between the olfactory scores determined by psychophysical tests and the serum levels of IL-6 in patients affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) Methods: : Patients underwent psychophysical olfactory assessment with Connecticut Chemosensory Clinical Research Center test and IL-6 plasma level determination within 10 days of the clinical onset of COVID-19. Results: : Seventy-four COVID-19 patients were included in this study. COVID-19 staged as mild in 34 patients, moderate in 26 and severe in 14 cases. There were no significant differences in olfactory scores across the different COVID-19 severity groups In the patient series, the median plasma level of IL-6 was 7.7 pg/mL (IQR 3.7 – 18.8). The concentration of IL-6 was found to be significantly correlated with the severity of COVID-19 with a directly proportional relationship. The correlation between IL-6 plasma concentrations and olfactory scores was weak (r s =0.182) and not significant (p=0.12). Conclusions: : In COVID-19 patients, psychophysical olfactory scores did not show significant correlations with the plasma levels of a well-recognized negative prognostic factor such as IL-6. This observation casts some shadows on the positive prognostic value of olfactory dysfunctions

5.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-314810

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study was the reconstruction of SARS-CoV-2 evolutionary dynamics in time and space in Italy and Europe between February and June 2020. The cluster analysis showed that pure Italian clusters were observed mainly after the lockdown and distancing measures were adopted. Lineage B and B.1 spread between late January and early February 2020, from China to Veneto and Lombardy, respectively. Lineage B.1.1 most probably evolved within Italy and spread from central to south Italian regions, and to European countries. The lineage B.1.1.1 entered Italy only in the second half of March and remained localized in Piedmont until June 2020. In conclusion, the reconstructed ancestral scenario suggests a central role of China and Italy in the widespread diffusion of the D614G variant in Europe in the early phase of the pandemic and more dispersed exchanges involving several European countries from the second half of March 2020.

6.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-314809

ABSTRACT

The aims of this study were to characterize new SARS-CoV-2 genomes sampled all over Italy and to reconstruct the origin and the evolutionary dynamics in Italy and Europe between February and June 2020. The cluster analysis showed only small clusters including <80 Italian isolates, while most of the Italian strains were intermixed in the whole tree. Pure Italian clusters were observed mainly after the lockdown and distancing measures were adopted. Lineage B and B.1 spread between late January and early February 2020, from China to Veneto and Lombardy, respectively. Lineage B.1.1 most probably evolved within Italy and spread from central to south Italian regions, and to European countries. The lineage B.1.1.1 developed most probably in other European countries entering Italy only in the second half of March and remained localized in Piedmont until June 2020. In conclusion, the reconstructed ancestral scenario suggests a central role of China and Italy in the widespread diffusion of the D614G variant in Europe in the early phase of the pandemic and more dispersed exchanges involving several European countries from the second half of March 2020.

7.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 8: 779118, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1674348

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: SARS-CoV-2 is fundamentally a respiratory pathogen with a wide spectrum of symptoms. The COVID-19 related pancreatitis is less considered than other clinical features. The purpose is to describe two cases of pancreatitis associated with COVID-19. METHODOLOGY: Patients' demographics, clinical features, laboratory, and instrumental findings were collected. RESULTS: Two patients admitted to the hospital were diagnosed with COVID-19 and severe acute pancreatitis, according to the Atlanta criteria. Other causes of acute pancreatitis were excluded. Treatment included broad-spectrum antibiotics, proton pump inhibitors, and low molecular weight heparin. Steroids, oxygen, antifungal treatment, and pain killers were administered when appropriate. Both patients were asymptomatic, with normal vital parameters and blood exams, and were discharged in a good condition. CONCLUSION: It is recommendable to include lipase and amylase on laboratory routine tests in order to evaluate the need for the abdominal CT-scan and specific therapy before hospital admission of the patients with COVID-19 related life-threatening acute pancreatitis.

8.
PLoS One ; 16(3): e0248009, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1575841

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Since the start of the pandemic, millions of people have been infected, with thousands of deaths. Many foci worldwide have been identified in retirement nursing homes, with a high number of deaths. Our study aims were to evaluate the spread of SARS-CoV-2 in the retirement nursing homes, the predictors to develop symptoms, and death. METHODS AND FINDINGS: We conducted a retrospective study enrolling all people living in retirement nursing homes (PLRNH), where at least one SARS-CoV-2 infected person was present. Medical and clinical data were collected. Variables were compared with Student's t-test or Pearson chi-square test as appropriate. Uni- and multivariate analyses were conducted to evaluate variables' influence on infection and symptoms development. Cox proportional-hazards model was used to evaluate 30 days mortality predictors, considering death as the dependent variable. We enrolled 382 subjects. The mean age was 81.15±10.97 years, and males were 140(36.7%). At the multivariate analysis, mental disorders, malignancies, and angiotensin II receptor blockers were predictors of SARS-CoV-2 infection while having a neurological syndrome was associated with a lower risk. Only half of the people with SARS-CoV-2 infection developed symptoms. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and neurological syndrome were correlated with an increased risk of developing SARS-CoV-2 related symptoms. Fifty-six (21.2%) people with SARS-CoV-2 infection died; of these, 53 died in the first 30 days after the swab's positivity. Significant factors associated with 30-days mortality were male gender, hypokinetic disease, and the presence of fever and dyspnea. Patients' autonomy and early heparin treatment were related to lower mortality risk. CONCLUSIONS: We evidenced factors associated with infection's risk and death in a setting with high mortality such as retirement nursing homes, that should be carefully considered in the management of PLRNH.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/administration & dosage , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Dyspnea/etiology , Female , Fever/etiology , Heparin, Low-Molecular-Weight/therapeutic use , Humans , Male , Mental Disorders/complications , Mental Disorders/pathology , Neoplasms/complications , Neoplasms/pathology , Nursing Homes , Proportional Hazards Models , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sex Factors , Survival Rate
9.
Laryngoscope ; 132(2): 419-421, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1527451

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study is to investigate the clinical profile of patients who developed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) after full vaccination. Demographic, epidemiological and clinical data were collected through medical records and online patient-reported outcome questionnaire from patients who developed symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection, confirmed by nasopharyngeal swab, at least 2 weeks after completion of vaccination. A total of 153 subjects were included. The most frequent symptoms were: asthenia (82.4%), chemosensory dysfunction (63.4%), headache (59.5%), runny nose (58.2%), muscle pain (54.9%), loss of appetite (54.3%), and nasal obstruction (51.6%). Particularly, 62.3% and 53.6% of subjects reported olfactory and gustatory dysfunction, respectively. Symptom severity was mild or moderate in almost all cases. Chemosensory dysfunctions have been observed to be a frequent symptom even in subjects who contracted the infection after full vaccination. For this reason, the sudden loss of smell and taste could continue to represent a useful and specific diagnostic marker to raise the suspicion of COVID-19 even in vaccinated subjects. In the future, it will be necessary to establish what the recovery rate is in these patients. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 4 Laryngoscope, 132:419-421, 2022.


Subject(s)
Ageusia/epidemiology , Anosmia/epidemiology , COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19/physiopathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Ageusia/virology , Anosmia/virology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Patient Reported Outcome Measures , Smell/drug effects , Surveys and Questionnaires , Taste/drug effects , Vaccination
10.
Med Princ Pract ; 30(6): 535-541, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1484145

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to investigate the presence and severity of depressive symptoms among coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) inpatients and any possible changes after their discharge. SUBJECT AND METHODS: We collected data of patients admitted to the Infectious Disease Unit in Sassari, Italy, for COVID-19, from March 8 to May 8, 2020. The Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) was performed 1 week after admission (T0) and 1 week after discharge (T1). The cutoff point chosen to define the clinical significance of depressive symptoms was 20 (at least moderate). RESULTS: Forty-eight subjects were included. Mean age was 64.3 ± 17.6 years, and 32 (66.7%) were male. Most frequent comorbidities were cardiovascular diseases (19; 39.6%) and hypertension (17; 35.4%). When performing BDI-II at T0, 21 (43.7%) patients reported depressive symptoms at T0, according to the chosen cutoff point (BDI-II = 20). Eight (16.7%) patients had minimal symptoms. Mild mood disturbance and moderate and severe depressive symptoms were found in 24 (50%), 14 (29.2%), and 2 (4.2%) patients, respectively, at T0. The comparison of the BDI-II questionnaire at T0 with T1 showed a significant improvement in the total score (p < 0.0001), as well as in 4 out of the 5 selected questions of interest (p < 0.05). Univariate analysis showed that kidney failure and the death of a roommate were significantly associated with severity of mood disorders. CONCLUSION: Mood disturbances and depressive symptoms commonly occur among COVID-19 inpatients. Our results show that COVID-19 inpatients might be at higher risk for developing depressive reactive disorders and could benefit from an early psychological evaluation and strategies improving sleep quality.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/psychology , Depression/epidemiology , Inpatients/psychology , Mood Disorders/epidemiology , Sleep/physiology , Adjustment Disorders , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/complications , Depression/diagnosis , Female , Humans , Male , Mental Health , Middle Aged , Mood Disorders/diagnosis , Psychiatric Status Rating Scales , SARS-CoV-2
11.
J Infect Dev Ctries ; 15(3): 353-359, 2021 Mar 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1444370

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The early identification of factors that predict the length of hospital stay (HS) in patients affected by coronavirus desease (COVID-19) might assist therapeutic decisions and patient flow management. METHODOLOGY: We collected, at the time of admission, routine clinical, laboratory, and imaging parameters of hypoxia, lung damage, inflammation, and organ dysfunction in a consecutive series of 50 COVID-19 patients admitted to the Respiratory Disease and Infectious Disease Units of the University Hospital of Sassari (North-Sardinia, Italy) and alive on discharge. RESULTS: Prolonged HS (PHS, >21 days) patients had significantly lower PaO2/FiO2 ratio and lymphocytes, and significantly higher Chest CT severity score, C-reactive protein (CRP) and lactic dehydrogenase (LDH) when compared to non-PHS patients. In univariate logistic regression, Chest CT severity score (OR = 1.1891, p = 0.007), intensity of care (OR = 2.1350, p = 0.022), PaO2/FiO2 ratio (OR = 0.9802, p = 0.007), CRP (OR = 1.0952, p = 0.042) and platelet to lymphocyte ratio (OR = 1.0039, p = 0.036) were significantly associated with PHS. However, in multivariate logistic regression, only the PaO2/FiO2 ratio remained significantly correlated with PHS (OR = 0.9164; 95% CI 0.8479-0.9904, p = 0.0275). In ROC curve analysis, using a threshold of 248, the PaO2/FiO2 ratio predicted PHS with sensitivity and specificity of 60% and 91%, respectively (AUC = 0.780, 95% CI 0.637-0.886 p = 0.002). CONCLUSIONS: The PaO2/FiO2 ratio on admission is independently associated with PHS in COVID-19 patients. Larger prospective studies are needed to confirm this finding.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/physiopathology , Hypoxia/diagnosis , Length of Stay/statistics & numerical data , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Humans , Hypoxia/virology , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , Retrospective Studies
12.
13.
Laryngoscope ; 131(10): 2312-2318, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1318729

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: The aim of this study was to evaluate the correlations between the severity and duration of olfactory dysfunctions (OD), assessed with psychophysical tests, and the viral load on the rhino-pharyngeal swab determined with a direct method, in patients affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). STUDY DESIGN: Prospective cohort study. METHODS: Patients underwent psychophysical olfactory assessment with Connecticut Chemosensory Clinical Research Center test and determination of the normalized viral load on nasopharyngeal swab within 10 days of the clinical onset of COVID-19. RESULTS: Sixty COVID-19 patients were included in this study. On psychophysical testing, 12 patients (20% of the cohort) presented with anosmia, 11 (18.3%) severe hyposmia, 13 (18.3%) moderate hyposmia, and 10 (16.7%) mild hyposmia with an overall prevalence of OD of 76.7%. The overall median olfactory score was 50 (interquartile range [IQR] 30-72.5) with no significant differences between clinical severity subgroups. The median normalized viral load detected in the series was 2.56E+06 viral copies/106 copies of human beta-2microglobulin mRNA present in the sample (IQR 3.17E+04-1.58E+07) without any significant correlations with COVID-19 severity. The correlation between viral load and olfactory scores at baseline (R2  = 0.0007; P = .844) and 60-day follow-up (R2  = 0.0077; P = .519) was weak and not significant. CONCLUSIONS: The presence of OD does not seem to be useful in identifying subjects at risk for being super-spreaders or who is at risk of developing long-term OD. Similarly, the pathogenesis of OD is probably related to individual factors rather than to viral load and activity. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 4 Laryngoscope, 131:2312-2318, 2021.


Subject(s)
Anosmia/diagnosis , COVID-19/complications , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Severity of Illness Index , Viral Load/statistics & numerical data , Aged , Anosmia/virology , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prevalence , Prospective Studies
14.
J Med Virol ; 93(4): 2446-2452, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1227755

ABSTRACT

We have evaluated flu vaccine coverage and variables associated with the lack of vaccination in cirrhotic subjects with particular attention to the cirrhosis etiology. Cirrhotic subjects consecutively referring to eight Italian centers were prospectively enrolled for a 6-month period in 2019. Subjects were asked if they had received a flu vaccine in the last 12 months. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to identify independent predictors of lack of vaccination. A total of 818 cases were recruited. The overall vaccine coverage was 39.6% (26.9% in those younger than 65 years and 51.9% in those older than 64 years; p < 0.001). Age < 65 years (odds ratio [OR] = 2.38; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.68-3.36), alcoholic etiology (OR = 2.40; 95% CI = 1.49-3.85), birth abroad (OR = 2.7; 95% CI = 1.10-6.61), and residence in South/Sardinia island (OR = 1.66; 95% CI = 1.14-2.42) all resulted independent predictors of the likelihood of lack of vaccination. The lack of information regarding the vaccine as the reason for no vaccination was reported by 71.4% of foreigners and by 34.7% of natives (p < 0.001). In conclusion, much work still should be done to improve coverage among groups at higher risk of lack of vaccination identified in this survey. The ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic may represent one more alert for improving seasonal flu vaccine coverage to avoid further stress to the National Health System.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Influenza Vaccines/administration & dosage , Influenza, Human/complications , Liver Cirrhosis/epidemiology , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Liver Cirrhosis/etiology , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Seasons , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data
15.
Eur Arch Otorhinolaryngol ; 279(2): 811-816, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1226215

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Interleukin 6 (IL-6) is a proinflammatory cytokine that is secreted by cells infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and it is widely recognized as a negative prognostic factor. The purpose of this study was to analyze the correlations between the olfactory scores determined by psychophysical tests and the serum levels of IL-6 in patients affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) METHODS: Patients underwent psychophysical olfactory assessment with Connecticut Chemosensory Clinical Research Center test and IL-6 plasma level determination within 10 days of the clinical onset of COVID-19. RESULTS: Seventy-four COVID-19 patients were included in this study. COVID-19 staged as mild in 34 patients, moderate in 26 and severe in 14 cases. There were no significant differences in olfactory scores across the different COVID-19 severity groups. In the patient series, the median plasma level of IL-6 was 7.7 pg/mL (IQR 3.7-18.8). The concentration of IL-6 was found to be significantly correlated with the severity of COVID-19 with a directly proportional relationship. The correlation between IL-6 plasma concentrations and olfactory scores was weak (rs = 0.182) and not significant (p = 0.12). CONCLUSIONS: In COVID-19 patients, psychophysical olfactory scores did not show significant correlations with the plasma levels of a well-recognized negative prognostic factor such as IL-6. This observation casts some shadows on the positive prognostic value of olfactory dysfunctions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Humans , Interleukin-6 , Olfaction Disorders/diagnosis , Olfaction Disorders/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Smell
16.
mSphere ; 6(1)2021 01 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1061527

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) environmental contamination occurs through droplets and biological fluids released in the surroundings from patients or asymptomatic carriers. Surfaces and objects contaminated by saliva or nose secretions represent a risk for indirect transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We assayed surfaces from hospital and living spaces to identify the presence of viral RNA and the spread of fomites in the environment. Anthropic contamination by droplets and biological fluids was monitored by detecting the microbiota signature using multiplex quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) on selected species and massive sequencing on 16S amplicons. A total of 92 samples (flocked swabs) were collected from critical areas during the pandemic, including indoor (three hospitals and three public buildings) and outdoor surfaces exposed to anthropic contamination (handles and handrails, playgrounds). Traces of biological fluids were frequently detected in spaces open to the public and on objects that are touched with the hands (>80%). However, viral RNA was not detected in hospital wards or other indoor and outdoor surfaces either in the air system of a COVID hospital but only in the surroundings of an infected patient, in consistent association with droplet traces and fomites. Handled objects accumulated the highest level of multiple contaminations by saliva, nose secretions, and fecal traces, further supporting the priority role of handwashing in prevention. In conclusion, anthropic contamination by droplets and biological fluids is widespread in spaces open to the public and can be traced by qPCR. Monitoring fomites can support evaluation of indirect transmission risks for coronavirus or other flu-like viruses in the environment.IMPORTANCE Several studies have evaluated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in the environment. Saliva and nasopharyngeal droplets can land on objects and surfaces, creating fomites. A suitable indicator would allow the detection of droplets or biofluids carrying the virus. Therefore, we searched for viral RNA and droplets and fomites on at risk surfaces. We monitored by qPCR or next generation sequencing (NGS) droplets through their microbiota. Although the study was performed during the pandemic, SARS-CoV-2 was not significantly found on surfaces, with the only exception of environmental areas near infectious patients. Conversely, anthropic contamination was frequent, suggesting a role for biofluids as putative markers of indirect transmission and risk assessment. Moreover, all SARS-CoV-2-contaminated surfaces showed droplets' microbiota. Fomite monitoring by qPCR may have an impact on public health strategies, supporting prevention of indirect transmission similarly to what is done for other communicable diseases (e.g., influenza and influenza-like infections).


Subject(s)
Environmental Exposure/analysis , Fomites/virology , Hospitals , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Humans , RNA, Viral , Saliva/virology , Surface Properties
17.
mSphere ; 6(1)2021 01 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1013023

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) environmental contamination occurs through droplets and biological fluids released in the surroundings from patients or asymptomatic carriers. Surfaces and objects contaminated by saliva or nose secretions represent a risk for indirect transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We assayed surfaces from hospital and living spaces to identify the presence of viral RNA and the spread of fomites in the environment. Anthropic contamination by droplets and biological fluids was monitored by detecting the microbiota signature using multiplex quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) on selected species and massive sequencing on 16S amplicons. A total of 92 samples (flocked swabs) were collected from critical areas during the pandemic, including indoor (three hospitals and three public buildings) and outdoor surfaces exposed to anthropic contamination (handles and handrails, playgrounds). Traces of biological fluids were frequently detected in spaces open to the public and on objects that are touched with the hands (>80%). However, viral RNA was not detected in hospital wards or other indoor and outdoor surfaces either in the air system of a COVID hospital but only in the surroundings of an infected patient, in consistent association with droplet traces and fomites. Handled objects accumulated the highest level of multiple contaminations by saliva, nose secretions, and fecal traces, further supporting the priority role of handwashing in prevention. In conclusion, anthropic contamination by droplets and biological fluids is widespread in spaces open to the public and can be traced by qPCR. Monitoring fomites can support evaluation of indirect transmission risks for coronavirus or other flu-like viruses in the environment.IMPORTANCE Several studies have evaluated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in the environment. Saliva and nasopharyngeal droplets can land on objects and surfaces, creating fomites. A suitable indicator would allow the detection of droplets or biofluids carrying the virus. Therefore, we searched for viral RNA and droplets and fomites on at risk surfaces. We monitored by qPCR or next generation sequencing (NGS) droplets through their microbiota. Although the study was performed during the pandemic, SARS-CoV-2 was not significantly found on surfaces, with the only exception of environmental areas near infectious patients. Conversely, anthropic contamination was frequent, suggesting a role for biofluids as putative markers of indirect transmission and risk assessment. Moreover, all SARS-CoV-2-contaminated surfaces showed droplets' microbiota. Fomite monitoring by qPCR may have an impact on public health strategies, supporting prevention of indirect transmission similarly to what is done for other communicable diseases (e.g., influenza and influenza-like infections).


Subject(s)
Environmental Exposure/analysis , Fomites/virology , Hospitals , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Humans , RNA, Viral , Saliva/virology , Surface Properties
18.
J Med Virol ; 93(4): 2446-2452, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-996239

ABSTRACT

We have evaluated flu vaccine coverage and variables associated with the lack of vaccination in cirrhotic subjects with particular attention to the cirrhosis etiology. Cirrhotic subjects consecutively referring to eight Italian centers were prospectively enrolled for a 6-month period in 2019. Subjects were asked if they had received a flu vaccine in the last 12 months. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to identify independent predictors of lack of vaccination. A total of 818 cases were recruited. The overall vaccine coverage was 39.6% (26.9% in those younger than 65 years and 51.9% in those older than 64 years; p < 0.001). Age < 65 years (odds ratio [OR] = 2.38; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.68-3.36), alcoholic etiology (OR = 2.40; 95% CI = 1.49-3.85), birth abroad (OR = 2.7; 95% CI = 1.10-6.61), and residence in South/Sardinia island (OR = 1.66; 95% CI = 1.14-2.42) all resulted independent predictors of the likelihood of lack of vaccination. The lack of information regarding the vaccine as the reason for no vaccination was reported by 71.4% of foreigners and by 34.7% of natives (p < 0.001). In conclusion, much work still should be done to improve coverage among groups at higher risk of lack of vaccination identified in this survey. The ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic may represent one more alert for improving seasonal flu vaccine coverage to avoid further stress to the National Health System.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Influenza Vaccines/administration & dosage , Influenza, Human/complications , Liver Cirrhosis/epidemiology , Vaccination Coverage/statistics & numerical data , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Liver Cirrhosis/etiology , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Seasons , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data
19.
Molecules ; 25(23)2020 Dec 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-966610

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The rapid onset of a systemic pro-inflammatory state followed by acute respiratory distress syndrome is the leading cause of mortality in patients with COVID-19. We performed a retrospective observational study to explore the capacity of different complete blood cell count (CBC)-derived inflammation indexes to predict in-hospital mortality in this group. METHODS: The neutrophil to lymphocyte ratio (NLR), derived NLR (dNLR), platelet to lymphocyte ratio (PLR), mean platelet volume to platelet ratio (MPR), neutrophil to lymphocyte × platelet ratio (NLPR), monocyte to lymphocyte ratio (MLR), systemic inflammation response index (SIRI), systemic inflammation index (SII), and the aggregate index of systemic inflammation (AISI) were calculated on hospital admission in 119 patients with laboratory confirmed COVID-19. RESULTS: Non-survivors had significantly higher AISI, dNLR, NLPR, NLR, SII, and SIRI values when compared to survivors. Similarly, Kaplan-Meier survival curves showed significantly lower survival in patients with higher AISI, dNLR, MLR, NLPR, NLR, SII, and SIRI. However, after adjusting for confounders, only the SII remained significantly associated with survival (HR = 1.0001; 95% CI, 1.0000-1.0001, p = 0.029) in multivariate Cox regression analysis. CONCLUSIONS: The SII on admission independently predicts in-hospital mortality in COVID-19 patients and may assist with early risk stratification in this group.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , Hospital Mortality , Inflammation/blood , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Blood Cell Count , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Comorbidity , Female , Humans , Lymphocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Neutrophils , ROC Curve , Retrospective Studies
20.
Eur J Clin Invest ; 51(1): e13427, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-846927

ABSTRACT

Increased concentrations of serum aspartate transaminase (AST) and alanine transaminase (ALT) are common in COVID-19 patients. However, their capacity to predict mortality, particularly the AST/ALT ratio, commonly referred to as the De Ritis ratio, is unknown. We investigated the association between the De Ritis ratio on admission and in-hospital mortality in 105 consecutive patients with coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) admitted to three COVID-19 referral centres in Sardinia, Italy. The De Ritis ratio was significantly lower in survivors than nonsurvivors (median: 1.25; IQR: 0.91-1.64 vs 1.67; IQR: 1.38-1.97, P = .002) whilst there were no significant between-group differences in ALT and AST concentrations. In ROC curve analysis, the AUC value of the De Ritis ratio was 0.701 (95% CI 0.603-0.787, P = .0006) with sensitivity and specificity of 74% and 70%, respectively. Kaplan-Meier survival curves showed a significant association between the De Ritis ratio and mortality (logrank test P = .014). By contrast, no associations were observed between the ALT and AST concentrations and mortality (logrank test P = .83 and P = .62, respectively). In multivariate Cox regression analysis, the HR in patients with De Ritis ratios ≥1.63 (upper tertile of this parameter) remained significant after adjusting for age, gender, smoking status, cardiovascular disease, intensity of care, diabetes, respiratory diseases, malignancies and kidney disease (HR: 2.46, 95% CI 1.05-5.73, P = .037). Therefore, the De Ritis ratio on admission was significantly associated with in-hospital mortality in COVID-19 patients. Larger studies are required to confirm the capacity of this parameter to independently predict mortality in this group.


Subject(s)
Alanine Transaminase/blood , Aspartate Aminotransferases/blood , COVID-19/blood , Hospital Mortality , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/therapy , Cardiovascular Diseases/epidemiology , Comorbidity , Female , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/metabolism , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , L-Lactate Dehydrogenase/blood , Leukocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Multivariate Analysis , Noninvasive Ventilation , Oxygen Inhalation Therapy , Prognosis , Proportional Hazards Models , ROC Curve , Respiration, Artificial , SARS-CoV-2
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