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1.
Curr Opin Infect Dis ; 35(4): 370-377, 2022 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1948616

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Despite advances in infection prevention and control and breakthroughs in vaccination development, challenges remain for long-term care facilities (LTCFs) as they face a likely future of emerging infectious diseases. To ensure the safety of LTCF residents from the current and future pandemics, we identify lessons learned from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) experience for improving future prevention and response efforts. RECENT FINDINGS: In addition to high disease susceptibility among LTCF residents, LTCF vulnerabilities include a lack of pandemic preparedness, a lack of surge capacity in human, material and testing resources, and poorly designed buildings. External sources of vulnerability include staff working in multiple LTCFs and high COVID-19 rates in surrounding communities. Other challenges include poor cooperation between LTCFs and the other components of health systems, inadequately enforced regulations, and the sometimes contradictory interests for-profit LTCFs face between protecting their residents and turning a profit. SUMMARY: These challenges can be addressed in the post-COVID-19 period through systemic reforms. Governments should establish comprehensive health networks that normalize mechanisms for prediction/preparedness and response/recovery from disruptive events including pandemics. In addition, governments should facilitate cooperation among public and private sector health systems and institutions while utilizing advanced digital communication technologies. These steps will greatly reduce the threat to LTCFs posed by emerging infectious diseases in future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Communicable Diseases, Emerging , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Facilities , Humans , Long-Term Care , Pandemics/prevention & control
2.
International Journal of Translational Medicine ; 2(3):275-308, 2022.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-1911408

ABSTRACT

This paper provides a comprehensive summary of evidence to explore and position the role of serology testing in the context of coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) immunization and policy response in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. The document builds on a review of academic literature and existing policies followed by a process of discussion, validation, and feedback by a group of six experts. Six countries and territories-Australia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Taiwan-were sampled to highlight the differing contexts and scenarios in the region. The review includes an overview of (1) the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the emergence of Variants of Concern (VOCs), especially Omicron, (2) the introduction of immunization, (3) the available testing options and potential use of serology testing, (4) the landscape of guidelines and recommendations for their use, and (5) the barriers and challenges to implementing serology testing as a tool to support COVID-19 immunization. Based on the findings, the co-authors propose a set of recommendations to resolve knowledge gaps, to include the use of serology testing as part of the policy response, and to ensure adequate means of implementation. This paper's target audience includes members of the academic community, medical societies, health providers and practitioners, and decision-makers.

3.
Biomedicines ; 10(4)2022 Apr 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1792824

ABSTRACT

Patients with immune-mediated inflammatory diseases (IMID) were seldom enrolled in the studies of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, and real-world data regarding the immunogenicity of different types of vaccines is limited. We aimed to assess the immunogenicity and safety of three types of vaccines (AZD1222, mRNA-1273, and BNT162b2) in 253 patients with IMID and 30 healthcare workers (HCWs). Plasma levels of IgG-antibody against SARS-CoV-2 targeting the receptor-binding domain of spike protein (anti-S/RBD-IgG) were determined by chemiluminescent immunoassay 3-4 weeks after the first-dose and second-dose vaccination. The positive rate and titers of anti-S/RBD-IgG were significantly higher in mRNA-1273 or BNT162b2 than in the AZD1222 vaccine. Immunogenicity was augmented after the second dose of any vaccine type in all IMID patients, suggesting that these patients should complete the vaccination series. Anti-S/RBD-IgG titers after first-dose vaccination were significantly lower in RA patients than pSS patients, but there was no significant difference after second-dose vaccination among five groups of IMID patients. The positive rate and titers of anti-S/RBD-IgG were significantly lower in patients receiving abatacept/rituximab therapy than in those receiving other DMARDs. All three SARS-CoV-2 vaccines showed acceptable safety profiles, and the common AEs were injection site reactions. We identified SLE as a significant predictor of increased autoimmunity and would like to promote awareness of the possibility of autoimmunity following vaccination.

4.
J Clin Virol ; 150-151: 105156, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1773461

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In Taiwan, the vaccination program started in March 2021, with ChAdOx1-S being the first available WHO-approved COVID-19 vaccine, followed by Moderna vaccine. This study aimed to investigate the immunogenicity and safety of homologous and heterologous prime-boost regimens with ChAdOx1-S and mRNA-1273. METHODS: From March to November 2021, homologous or heterologous regimens with ChAdOx1-S and mRNA-1273 vaccination (ChAdOx1-S/ChAdOx1-S, mRNA-1273/mRNA-1273, ChAdOx1-S/mRNA-1273) were given to 945 healthy participants. Serum samples were collected at designated time points. The anti-RBD/S1 antibody titers and neutralizing ability were measured by three different immunoassays: Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 S (Roche Diagnostics, Mannheim, Germany), AdviseDx SARS-CoV-2 IgG II (Abbott Diagnostics Division, Sligo, Ireland), and cPass™ SARS-CoV-2 Neutralization Antibody Detection Kit (GenScript, New Jersey, USA). RESULTS: We found that heterologous vaccination with ChAdOx1-S/mRNA-1273 had an acceptable safety profile and induced higher total anti-RBD/S1 antibody production (p < 0.0001), yet lower anti-RBD/S1 IgG titer (p < 0.0001) and neutralizing ability (p = 0.0101) than mRNA-1273/mRNA-1273 group. Both regimens showed higher antibody titers and superior neutralizing abilities than ChAdOx1-S/ChAdOx1-S. An age-dependent antibody response to ChAdOx1-S/mRNA-1273 was shown after both the priming and the booster doses. Younger age was associated with higher antibody production and neutralizing ability. CONCLUSIONS: Heterologous ChAdOx1-S/mRNA-1273 vaccination regimen is generally safe and induces a robust humoral immune response that is non-inferior to that of mRNA-1273/mRNA-1273.


Subject(s)
2019-nCoV Vaccine mRNA-1273 , COVID-19 , ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , 2019-nCoV Vaccine mRNA-1273/adverse effects , 2019-nCoV Vaccine mRNA-1273/immunology , Adult , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , ChAdOx1 nCoV-19/adverse effects , ChAdOx1 nCoV-19/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , SARS-CoV-2 , Taiwan , Vaccination
6.
Viruses ; 13(8)2021 07 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1335233

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), a novel coronavirus in humans, has expanded globally over the past year. COVID-19 remains an important subject of intensive research owing to its huge impact on economic and public health globally. Based on historical archives, the first coronavirus-related disease recorded was possibly animal-related, a case of feline infectious peritonitis described as early as 1912. Despite over a century of documented coronaviruses in animals, the global animal industry still suffers from outbreaks. Knowledge and experience handling animal coronaviruses provide a valuable tool to complement our understanding of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In this review, we present an overview of coronaviruses, clinical signs, COVID-19 in animals, genome organization and recombination, immunopathogenesis, transmission, viral shedding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. By drawing parallels between COVID-19 in animals and humans, we provide perspectives on the pathophysiological mechanisms by which coronaviruses cause diseases in both animals and humans, providing a critical basis for the development of effective vaccines and therapeutics against these deadly viruses.


Subject(s)
Animal Diseases/virology , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Coronavirus/physiology , Animal Diseases/epidemiology , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Public Health , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology
7.
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
8.
Expert Rev Vaccines ; 20(8): 1027-1035, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1284828

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: To combat COVID-19, scientists all over the world have expedited the process of vaccine development. Although interim analyses of clinical trials have demonstrated the efficacy and safety of COVID-19 vaccines, a serious but rare adverse event, thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), has been reported following COVID-19 vaccination. AREAS COVERED: This review, using data from both peer-reviewed and non-peer-reviewed studies, aimed to provide updated information about the critical issue of COVID-19 vaccine-related TTS. EXPERT OPINION: : The exact epidemiological characteristics and possible pathogenesis of this adverse event remain unclear. Most cases of TTS developed in women within 2 weeks of the first dose of vaccine on the receipt of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 and Ad26.COV2.S vaccines. In countries with mass vaccination against COVID-19, clinicians should be aware of the relevant clinical features of this rare adverse event and perform related laboratory and imaging studies for early diagnosis. Non-heparin anticoagulants, such as fondaparinux, argatroban, or a direct oral anticoagulant (e.g. apixaban or rivaroxaban) and intravenous immunoglobulins are recommended for the treatment of TTS. However, further studies are required to explore the underlying mechanisms of this rare clinical entity. PLAIN LANGUAGE SUMMARY: What is the context?Thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS) usually develops within 2 weeks of the first doses of the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 and Ad26.COV2.S COVID-19 vaccines.TTS mainly occurs in patients aged < 55 years and is associated with high morbidity and mortality.What is new?TTS mimics autoimmune heparin-induced thrombocytopenia and can be mediated by platelet-activating antibodies against platelet factor 4. Non-heparin anticoagulants, such as fondaparinux, argatroban, or a direct oral anticoagulant (e.g. apixaban or rivaroxaban) should be considered as the treatment of choice if the platelet count is > 50 × 109/L and there is no serious bleeding. Intravenous immunoglobulins and glucocorticoids may help increase the platelet count within days and reduce the risk of hemorrhagic transformation when anticoagulation is initiated.What is the impact?TTS should be a serious concern during the implementation of mass COVID-19 vaccination, and patients should be educated about this complication along with its symptoms such as severe headache, blurred vision, seizure, severe and persistent abdominal pain, painful swelling of the lower leg, and chest pain or dyspnea. The incidence of TTS is low; therefore, maintenance of high vaccination coverage against COVID-19 should be continued.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Thrombocytopenia/chemically induced , Thrombosis/chemically induced , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Thrombocytopenia/diagnosis , Thrombocytopenia/epidemiology , Thrombosis/diagnosis , Thrombosis/epidemiology
9.
Expert Rev Vaccines ; 20(8): 1013-1025, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1284827

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Several vaccine candidates have been developed using different platforms, including nucleic acids (DNA and RNA), viral vectors (replicating and non-replicating), virus-like particles, peptide-based, recombinant proteins, live attenuated, and inactivated virus modalities. Although many of these vaccines are undergoing pre-clinical trials, several large clinical trials investigating the clinical efficacy and safety of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines have produced promising findings. AREAS COVERED: In this review, we provide a status update on COVID-19 vaccines currently undergoing clinical trials and discuss issues of concern beyond vaccine efficacy and safety, including dosing regimens, the mixed vaccine strategy, prior severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 infection, antibody levels, cellular immunity and protection, variants of concern, COVID-19 vaccine distribution, vaccination willingness, herd immunity, immunity passports, and vaccine indications. EXPERT OPINION: Four vaccines have obtained emergency use authorization, 87 are at the clinical development stage, and 186 are in pre-clinical development. While the knowledge and development of COVID-19 vaccines is rapidly expanding, the benefits of COVID-19 vaccines must outweigh the potential risks of adverse events. To combat the COVID-19 pandemic, clinicians should consistently update COVID-19-associated information, and healthcare authorities and manufacturers should work together to provide adequate and appropriate vaccinations for the prevention of COVID-19. PLAIN LANGUAGE SUMMARY: What is the context?Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) caused a global pandemic: the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak. The development and implementation of the COVID-19 vaccine could be an important measure to control the COVID-19 pandemic.What is new?Several phase 3 clinical trials have demonstrated the effectiveness and safety of COVID-19 vaccines for the prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infections. Several COVID-19 vaccines have obtained emergency use authorization and been implemented in many countries. Although concerns regarding unusual blood clots and low platelet counts have been raised, the benefits of COVID-19 vaccines outweigh the potential risks of adverse events.What is the impact?Except for children, the COVID-19 vaccine is recommended for all people, including those pregnant or immunocompromised. Healthcare authorities should advise people receiving the vaccine that they must seek medical attention if they have associated thromboembolism and thrombocytopenia symptoms. More studies are necessary to determine the appropriate vaccine dose and regimen strategy, as well as the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines against variants of concerns. A global effort must be made to achieve widespread vaccination and herd immunity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Patient Safety , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , Clinical Trials, Phase III as Topic/methods , Fatigue/chemically induced , Female , Fever/chemically induced , Headache/chemically induced , Humans , Immunocompromised Host/drug effects , Immunocompromised Host/physiology , Male , Pregnancy , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic/methods , Treatment Outcome
10.
J Microbiol Immunol Infect ; 54(5): 767-775, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1284232

ABSTRACT

Despite aggressive efforts on containment measures for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic around the world, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is continuously spreading. Therefore, there is an urgent need for an effective antiviral agent. To date, considerable research has been conducted to develop different approaches to COVID-19 therapy. In addition to early observational studies, which could be limited by study design, small sample size, non-randomized design, or different timings of treatment, an increasing number of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) investigating the clinical efficacy and safety of antiviral agents are being carried out. This study reviews the updated findings of RCTs regarding the clinical efficacy of eight antiviral agents against COVID-19, including remdesivir, lopinavir/ritonavir, favipiravir, sofosbuvir/daclatasvir, sofosbuvir/ledipasvir, baloxavir, umifenovir, darunavir/cobicistat, and their combinations. Treatment with remdesivir could accelerate clinical improvement; however, it lacked additional survival benefits. Moreover, 5-day regimen of remdesivir might show adequate effectiveness in patients with mild to moderate COVID-19. Favipiravir was only marginally effective regarding clinical improvement and virological assessment based on the results of small RCTs. The present evidence suggests that sofosbuvir/daclatasvir may improve survival and clinical outcomes in patients with COVID-19. However, the sample sizes for analysis were relatively small, and all studies were exclusively conducted in Iran. Further larger RCTs in other countries are warranted to support these findings. In contrast, the present findings of limited RCTs did not indicate the use of lopinavir/ritonavir, sofosbuvir/ledipasvir, baloxavir, umifenovir, and darunavir/cobicistat in the treatment of patients hospitalized for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/therapeutic use , Amides/therapeutic use , Carbamates/therapeutic use , Cobicistat/therapeutic use , Darunavir/therapeutic use , Dibenzothiepins/therapeutic use , Drug Combinations , Drug Therapy, Combination , Humans , Imidazoles/therapeutic use , Indoles/therapeutic use , Iran , Lopinavir/therapeutic use , Morpholines/therapeutic use , Pyrazines/therapeutic use , Pyridones/therapeutic use , Pyrrolidines/therapeutic use , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , Ritonavir/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Sofosbuvir/therapeutic use , Treatment Outcome , Triazines/therapeutic use , Valine/analogs & derivatives , Valine/therapeutic use
11.
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
12.
Front Immunol ; 12: 626609, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1259344

ABSTRACT

Accurate detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies provides a more accurate estimation of incident cases, epidemic dynamics, and risk of community transmission. We conducted a cross-sectional seroprevalence study specifically targeting different populations to examine the performance of pandemic control in Taiwan: symptomatic patients with epidemiological risk and negative qRT-PCR test (Group P), frontline healthcare workers (Group H), healthy adult citizens (Group C), and participants with prior virologically-confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) infection in 2003 (Group S). The presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 total and IgG antibodies in all participants were determined by Roche Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 test and Abbott SARS-CoV-2 IgG assay, respectively. Sera that showed positive results by the two chemiluminescent immunoassays were further tested by three anti-SARS-CoV-2 lateral flow immunoassays and line immunoassay (MIKROGEN recomLine SARS-CoV-2 IgG). Between June 29 and July 25, 2020, sera of 2,115 participates, including 499 Group P participants, 464 Group H participants, 1,142 Group C participants, and 10 Group S participants, were tested. After excluding six false-positive samples, SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence were 0.4, 0, and 0% in Groups P, H, and C, respectively. Cross-reactivity with SARS-CoV-2 antibodies was observed in 80.0% of recovered SARS participants. Our study showed that rigorous exclusion of false-positive testing results is imperative for an accurate estimate of seroprevalence in countries with previous SARS outbreak and low COVID-19 prevalence. The overall SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence was extremely low among populations of different exposure risk of contracting SARS-CoV-2 in Taiwan, supporting the importance of integrated countermeasures in containing the spread of SARS-CoV-2 before effective COVID-19 vaccines available.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/epidemiology , Adult , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cross Reactions , Cross-Sectional Studies , Disease Outbreaks , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Taiwan/epidemiology
13.
Int J Infect Dis ; 110: 469-478, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253018

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the prevalence of infection prevention behaviors in Taiwan-wearing facemasks and alcohol-based hand hygiene (AHH)-and compare their practice rates during SARS and COVID-19. METHODS: We surveyed 2328 Taiwanese from July 29 to August 6, 2020, assessing demographics, information sources, and preventive behaviors during the 2003 SARS outbreaks, 2009 pandemic influenza H1N1, COVID-19, and with post-survey intentions. Characteristics associated with the practice of preventive behaviors in 2020 were identified through logistic regression. RESULTS: Preventive behaviors were conscientiously practiced by 70.2% of participants. Compared with 2003 SARS/2009 H1N1, the percentages of facemask use (66.6% vs 99.2% [indoors], P < 0.001) and on-person AHH (44.2% vs 65.4% [hand sanitizers], P < 0.001) significantly increasedduring 2020 COVID-19. Highest adherence to preventive behaviors in 2020 was among females (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 1.72), those receiving government COVID-19 information (aOR, 1.52), participants recruited from primary-care clinics (aOR, 1.43), and those who practiced AHH during 2003 SARS/2009 H1N1 (aOR, 1.37). CONCLUSIONS: Government leadership, healthcare providers risk communication, and public cooperation rapidly mitigated the spread of COVID-19 in Taiwan even before vaccination. Future global efforts must implement such population-based preventive behaviors at a level above the viral-transmission-threshold, particularly in areas with fast-spreading SARS-CoV-2 variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Taiwan/epidemiology
14.
J Antimicrob Chemother ; 76(8): 1962-1968, 2021 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1147983

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: We performed a systematic review and network meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to provide updated information regarding the clinical efficacy of remdesivir in treating coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). METHODS: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, clinical trial registries of ClinicalTrials.gov and the WHO International Clinical Trials Registry Platform were searched for relevant articles published up to 18 November 2020. RESULTS: Five RCTs, including 13 544 patients, were included in this meta-analysis. Among them, 3839 and 391 patients were assigned to the 10 day and 5 day remdesivir regimens, respectively. Patients receiving 5 day remdesivir therapy presented greater clinical improvement than those in the control group [OR = 1.68 (95% CI 1.18-2.40)], with no significant difference observed between the 10 day and placebo groups [OR = 1.23 (95% CI 0.90-1.68)]. Patients receiving remdesivir revealed a greater likelihood of discharge [10 day remdesivir versus control: OR = 1.32 (95% CI 1.09-1.60); 5 day remdesivir versus control: OR = 1.73 (95% CI 1.28-2.35)] and recovery [10 day remdesivir versus control: OR = 1.29 (95% CI 1.03-1.60); 5 day remdesivir versus control: OR = 1.80 (95% CI 1.31-2.48)] than those in the control group. In contrast, no mortality benefit was observed following remdesivir therapy. Furthermore, no significant association was observed between remdesivir treatment and an increased risk of adverse events. CONCLUSIONS: Remdesivir can help improve the clinical outcome of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 and a 5 day regimen, instead of a 10 day regimen, may be sufficient for treatment. Moreover, remdesivir appears as tolerable as other comparators or placebo.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Network Meta-Analysis , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , SARS-CoV-2 , Treatment Outcome
15.
Int J Antimicrob Agents ; 57(4): 106324, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1141886

ABSTRACT

In addition to SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) infection itself, an increase in the incidence of antimicrobial resistance poses collateral damage to the current status of the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic. There has been a rapid increase in multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs), including extended-spectrum ß-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Klebsiella pneumoniae, carbapenem-resistant New Delhi metallo-ß-lactamase (NDM)-producing Enterobacterales, Acinetobacter baumannii, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), pan-echinocandin-resistant Candida glabrata and multi-triazole-resistant Aspergillus fumigatus. The cause is multifactorial and is particularly related to high rates of antimicrobial agent utilisation in COVID-19 patients with a relatively low rate of co- or secondary infection. Appropriate prescription and optimised use of antimicrobials according to the principles of antimicrobial stewardship as well as quality diagnosis and aggressive infection control measures may help prevent the occurrence of MDROs during this pandemic.


Subject(s)
Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Bacterial Infections/complications , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/epidemiology , Coinfection/drug therapy , Drug Resistance, Microbial , Mycoses/complications , Anti-Bacterial Agents/pharmacology , Antimicrobial Stewardship , Bacteria/drug effects , Bacterial Infections/drug therapy , Bacterial Infections/epidemiology , Coinfection/epidemiology , Drug Utilization , Fungi/drug effects , Humans , Incidence , Mycoses/drug therapy , Mycoses/epidemiology , Pandemics
16.
Travel Med Infect Dis ; 40: 101997, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1101527

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the incidence of notifiable infectious diseases (NIDs) in Taiwan remains unclear. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The number of cases of NID (n = 42) between January and September 2019 and 2020 were obtained from the open database from Taiwan Centers for Disease Control. RESULTS: The number of NID cases was 21,895 between January and September 2020, which was lower than the number of cases during the same period in 2019 (n = 24,469), with a decline in incidence from 102.9 to 91.7 per 100,000 people in 2019 and 2020, respectively. Fourteen airborne/droplet, 11 fecal-oral, seven vector-borne, and four direct-contact transmitted NID had an overall reduction of 2700 (-28.1%), 156 (-23.0%), 557 (-54.8%), and 73 (-45.9%) cases, respectively, from 2019 to 2020. Similar trends were observed for the changes in incidence, which were 11.5 (-28.4%), 6.7 (-23.4%), 2.4 (-55.0%), and 0.3 (-46.2%) per 100,000 people for airborne/droplet, fecal-oral, vector-borne, and direct-contact transmitted NID, respectively. In addition, all the 38 imported NID showed a reduction of 632 (-73.5%) cases from 2019 to 2020. In contrast, 4 sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) showed an increase of 903 (+7.2%) cases from 2019 to 2020, which was attributed to the increase in gonorrhea (from 3220 to 5028). The overall incidence of STDs increased from 52.5 to 56.0 per 100,000 people, with a percentage change of +6.7%. CONCLUSION: This study demonstrated a collateral benefit of COVID-19 prevention measures for various infectious diseases, except STDs, in Taiwan, during the COVID-19 epidemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Communicable Diseases/transmission , Gonorrhea/epidemiology , Humans , Incidence , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sexually Transmitted Diseases/epidemiology , Taiwan/epidemiology
17.
J Microbiol Immunol Infect ; 54(5): 816-829, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1096116

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: Our study goals were to evaluate the diagnostic performance of four anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies tests and the differences in dynamic immune responses between COVID-19 patients with and without pneumonia. METHODS: We collected 184 serum samples from 70 consecutively qRT-PCR-confirmed COVID-19 patients at four participating hospitals from 23 January 2020 to 30 September 2020. COVID-19 pneumonia was defined as the presence of new pulmonary infiltration. Serum samples were grouped by the duration after symptom onset on a weekly basis for antibody testing and analysis. The four immunoassays: Beckman SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM (Beckman Test), Siemens (ADVIA Centaur®) SARS-CoV-2 Total (COV2T) (Siemens Test), SBC COVID-19 IgG ELISA (SBC Test) and EliA SARS-CoV-2-Sp1 IgG/IgM/IgA P2 Research (EliA Test) were used for detecting the SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies. RESULTS: The sensitivity of all tests reached 100% after 42 days of symptom onset. Siemens Test, the only test detecting total anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, had the best performance in the early diagnosis of COVID-19 infection (day 0-7: 77%; day 8-14: 95%) compared to the other 3 serological tests. All tests showed 100% specificity except SBC Test (98%). COVID-19 patients with pneumonia had significantly higher testing signal values than patients without pneumonia (all p values < 0.05, except EliA IgM Test). However, Siemens Test and SBC Test had highest probability in early prediction of the presence of COVID-19 pneumonia. CONCLUSION: Chronological analysis of immune response among COVID-19 patients with different serological tests provides important information in the early diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection and prediction of the risk of pneumonia after infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Immunoassay/methods , Pneumonia/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adult , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibody Formation , Early Diagnosis , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , False Positive Reactions , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin M/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , Sensitivity and Specificity , Serologic Tests , Taiwan
19.
Front Pharmacol ; 11: 584956, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-963117

ABSTRACT

For the initial phase of pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), repurposing drugs that in vitro inhibit severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) have been attempted with overlooked or overestimated efficacy owing to limited clinical evidence. Most early clinical trials have the defects of study design, small sample size, non-randomized design, or different timings of treatment initiation. However, well-designed studies on asymptomatic or mild, or pediatric cases of COVID-19 are scarce and desperately needed to meet the clinical need. However, a trend could be observed based on current clinical evidence. Remdesivir and favipiravir may shorten the recovery time; lopinavir/ritonavir does not demonstrate treatment efficacy in severe patients. Triple therapy of ribavirin, lopinavir, and interferon ß-1b showed early viral negative conversion, and the major effect may be related to interferon. Some small sample-size studies showed that interleukin-6 inhibitors may demonstrate clinical improvement; non-critical patients may benefit from convalescent plasma infusion in small sample-size studies; and the role of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine in the treatment and prophylaxis of COVID-19 remains unclear. Combination therapy of traditional Chinese medicine with antiviral agents (ex. interferon, lopinavir, or arbidol) may alleviate inflammation in severe COVID-19 patients based on small sample-sized observational studies and experts' opinion. Most of the published studies included severe or critical patients with COVID-19. Combination therapy of antiviral agents and immune-modulating drugs is reasonable especially for those critical COVID-19 patients with cytokine release syndrome. Drugs to blunt cytokine release might not benefit for patients in the early stage with mild disease or the late stage with critical illness. Traditional Chinese medicine with antiviral effects on SARS-CoV-2 and immune-modulation is widely used for COVID-19 patients in China, and is worthy of further studies. In this review, we aim to highlight the available therapeutic options for COVID-19 based on current clinical evidence and encourage clinical trials specific for children and for patients with mild disease or at the early stage of COVID-19.

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