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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(3)2022 01 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1674612

ABSTRACT

The Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome-associated Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was an outbreak in December, 2019 and rapidly spread to the world. All variants of SARS-CoV-2, including the globally and currently dominant Delta variant (Delta-SARS-CoV-2), caused severe disease and mortality. Among all variants, Delta-SARS-CoV-2 had the highest transmissibility, growth rate, and secondary attack rate than other variants except for the new variant of Omicron that still exists with many unknown effects. In Taiwan, the pandemic Delta-SARS-CoV-2 began in Pingtung from 14 June 2021 and ceased at 11 July 2021. Seventeen patients were infected by Delta-SARS-CoV-2 and 1 person died during the Pingtung outbreak. The Public Health Bureau of Pingtung County Government stopped the Delta-SARS-CoV-2 outbreak within 1 month through measures such as epidemic investigation, rapid gene sequencing, rapidly expanding isolation, expanded screening of the Delta-SARS-CoV-2 antigen for people who lived in regional villages, and indirect intervention, including rapid vaccination, short lockdown period, and travel restrictions. Indirect environmental factors, such as low levels of air pollution, tropic weather in the summer season, and rural areas might have accelerated the ability to control the Delta-SARS-CoV-2 spread. This successful experience might be recommended as a successful formula for the unvaccinated or insufficiently vaccinated regions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Disease Control , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Taiwan/epidemiology
2.
J Glob Antimicrob Resist ; 26: 308-316, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1313234

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to investigate the trends in serotypes and in vitro antimicrobial susceptibility of Streptococcus pneumoniae causing adult invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) to dalbavancin, telavancin, tedizolid, eravacycline, omadacycline and other comparator antibiotics from 2017-2020 following implementation of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV-13) and during the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic. METHODS: During the study period, 237 S. pneumoniae isolates were collected from non-duplicate patients, covering 15.0% of IPD cases in Taiwan. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed using a Sensititre® system. A latex agglutination method (ImmuLex™ Pneumotest Kit) was used to determine serotypes. RESULTS: Susceptibility rates were high for vancomycin (100%), teicoplanin (100%) and linezolid (100%), followed by ceftaroline (non-meningitis) (98.3%), moxifloxacin (94.9%) and quinupristin/dalfopristin (89.9%). MIC50 and MIC90 values of dalbavancin, telavancin, tedizolid, eravacycline and omadacycline were generally low. Non-vaccine serotype 23A was the leading cause of IPD across the adult age range. Isolates of serotype 15B were slightly fewer than those of PCV-13 serotypes in patients aged ≥65 years. The overall case fatality rate was 15.2% (36/237) but was especially high for non-PCV-13 serotype 15B (21.4%; 3/14). Vaccine coverage was 44.7% for PCV-13 and 49.4% for the 23-valent pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV-23), but was 57% for both PCV-13 and PPSV-23. CONCLUSION: The incidence of IPD was stationary after PCV-13 introduction and only dramatically decreased in the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The MIC50 and MIC90 values of dalbavancin, telavancin, tedizolid, eravacycline, omadacycline were generally low for S. pneumoniae causing adult IPD.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Streptococcus pneumoniae , Adult , Aminoglycosides , Anti-Bacterial Agents/pharmacology , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Drug Resistance, Bacterial , Humans , Lipoglycopeptides , Oxazolidinones , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Serogroup , Taiwan/epidemiology , Teicoplanin/analogs & derivatives , Teicoplanin/pharmacology , Tetracyclines , Tetrazoles
3.
J Microbiol Immunol Infect ; 55(2): 215-224, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1274336

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: Streptococcus pneumoniae causes pneumonia and other invasive diseases, and is a leading cause of mortality in the elderly population. The present study aimed to provide current antimicrobial resistance and epidemiological profiles of S. pneumoniae infections in Taiwan. METHODS: A total of 252 nonduplicate S. pneumoniae isolates were collected from patients admitted to 16 hospitals in Taiwan between January 2017 and December 2019, and were analyzed. The minimum inhibitory concentration of antibiotics was determined using the Vitek 2 automated system for antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Furthermore, epidemiological profiles of S. pneumoniae infections were analyzed. RESULTS: Among the strains analyzed, 88% were recognized as invasive pneumococcal strains. According to the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute criteria for non-meningitis, the prevalence of penicillin-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae demonstrated a declining trend from 43.6% in 2017 to 17.2% in 2019. However, the rate of penicillin-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae was 85.7% based on the criteria for meningitis. Furthermore, the prevalence of ceftriaxone-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae was 62.7% based on the criteria for meningitis. Isolates demonstrated higher susceptibility toward doripenem and ertapenem than toward meropenem and imipenem. An increased rate of non-susceptibility toward levofloxacin was observed in southern Taiwan (15.1%) and elderly patients (≥65 years; 11.4%). Most isolates were susceptible to vancomycin and linezolid. CONCLUSION: Empirical treatment with ceftriaxone monotherapy for pneumococcal meningitis should be carefully monitored owing to its high non-susceptibility rate. The susceptibility rates of most isolates to penicillin (used for treating non-meningitis pneumococcal diseases), carbapenems (ertapenem and doripenem), respiratory quinolones (moxifloxacin and levofloxacin), vancomycin, and linezolid suggested the potential of these antibiotics in treating pneumococcal diseases in Taiwan.


Subject(s)
Meningitis, Pneumococcal , Pneumococcal Infections , Aged , Anti-Bacterial Agents/pharmacology , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Ceftriaxone/pharmacology , Doripenem/therapeutic use , Drug Resistance, Bacterial , Ertapenem/therapeutic use , Humans , Levofloxacin/therapeutic use , Linezolid/therapeutic use , Meningitis, Pneumococcal/drug therapy , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Penicillins/pharmacology , Penicillins/therapeutic use , Pneumococcal Infections/drug therapy , Pneumococcal Infections/epidemiology , Streptococcus pneumoniae , Taiwan/epidemiology , Vancomycin/pharmacology
4.
Ann Med ; 53(1): 874-884, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1258660

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Statins are widely used to treat people with metabolic and cardiovascular disorders. The effect of statins on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is unclear. To investigate the association between statins and COVID-19 outcomes and, if possible, identify the subgroup population that benefits most from statin use. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A systematic review and meta-analysis of published studies that included statin users and described COVID-19 outcomes through 10 November 2020. This study used the generic inverse variance method to perform meta-analyses with random-effects modelling. The main outcomes were evaluation of the need for invasive mechanical ventilator (IMV) support, the need for intensive care unit (ICU) care and death. All outcomes were measured as dichotomous variables. RESULTS: A total of 28 observational studies, covering data from 63,537 individuals with COVID-19, were included. The use of statins was significantly associated with decreased mortality (odds ratio [OR] = 0.71, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.55-0.92, I2=72%) and the need for IMV (OR = 0.81, 95% CI: 0.69-0.95, I2=0%) but was not linked to the need for ICU care (OR = 0.91, 95% CI: 0.55-1.51, I2=66%). Subgroup analysis further identified five types of studies in which statin users had even lower odds of death. CONCLUSIONS: The use of statins was significantly associated with a reduced need for IMV and decreased mortality among individuals with COVID-19. Statins may not need to be discontinued because of concern for COVID-19 on admission. Further randomized controlled trial (RCTs) are needed to clarify the causal effect between statin use and severe COVID-19 outcomes.Key messagesParticipants in five types of studies were shown to have even lower odds of death when taking statins.The use of statins was significantly associated with a reduced need for invasive mechanical ventilation and decreased all-cause mortality among individuals with COVID-19. However, statin use did not prevent participants from needing care in the intensive care unit.The results justify performing randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to validate the benefits of statins on COVID-19 outcomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/mortality , Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors/administration & dosage , Respiration, Artificial/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/therapy , Cardiovascular Diseases/drug therapy , Humans , Intensive Care Units/statistics & numerical data , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
6.
Biomed J ; 43(4): 314-317, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-436885

ABSTRACT

By the request of the Minister of Health and Welfare, NHRI Biobank was assigned to establish a COVID-19 biobank in early Feb, 2020 to collect COVID-19 patients' blood samples for Taiwan researchers and industries in an emergent way. It was set up in less than 3 weeks and quickly opened for application. By August 5, 2020, this COVID-19 biobank has collected 165 blood samples of 110 patients from more than 10 hospitals across north, middle and south part of Taiwan, including both COVID-19 (+) and (-) pneumonia patients. This biobank can provide applicants with biosamples, such as serum, DNA and RNA, and also the clinical and genomic data, so as to accelerate the COVID-19 treatment and prevention research in Taiwan. This COID-19 biobank already received 15 applications. It has become the most important research resource for the COVID-19 pandemic in Taiwan, including new screening reagents, disease mechanism, the variable human responses and epidemic preventions. Since it is publicly available for both academic and industrial applicants.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Biological Specimen Banks , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Hospitals , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Taiwan/epidemiology
7.
N Engl J Med ; 383(19): 1827-1837, 2020 11 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-382019

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Remdesivir is an RNA polymerase inhibitor with potent antiviral activity in vitro and efficacy in animal models of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). METHODS: We conducted a randomized, open-label, phase 3 trial involving hospitalized patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, oxygen saturation of 94% or less while they were breathing ambient air, and radiologic evidence of pneumonia. Patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to receive intravenous remdesivir for either 5 days or 10 days. All patients received 200 mg of remdesivir on day 1 and 100 mg once daily on subsequent days. The primary end point was clinical status on day 14, assessed on a 7-point ordinal scale. RESULTS: In total, 397 patients underwent randomization and began treatment (200 patients for 5 days and 197 for 10 days). The median duration of treatment was 5 days (interquartile range, 5 to 5) in the 5-day group and 9 days (interquartile range, 5 to 10) in the 10-day group. At baseline, patients randomly assigned to the 10-day group had significantly worse clinical status than those assigned to the 5-day group (P = 0.02). By day 14, a clinical improvement of 2 points or more on the ordinal scale occurred in 64% of patients in the 5-day group and in 54% in the 10-day group. After adjustment for baseline clinical status, patients in the 10-day group had a distribution in clinical status at day 14 that was similar to that among patients in the 5-day group (P = 0.14). The most common adverse events were nausea (9% of patients), worsening respiratory failure (8%), elevated alanine aminotransferase level (7%), and constipation (7%). CONCLUSIONS: In patients with severe Covid-19 not requiring mechanical ventilation, our trial did not show a significant difference between a 5-day course and a 10-day course of remdesivir. With no placebo control, however, the magnitude of benefit cannot be determined. (Funded by Gilead Sciences; GS-US-540-5773 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT04292899.).


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/administration & dosage , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/administration & dosage , Adenosine Monophosphate/adverse effects , Adult , Aged , Alanine/administration & dosage , Alanine/adverse effects , Antiviral Agents/adverse effects , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Drug Administration Schedule , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Oxygen Inhalation Therapy , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome
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