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1.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-337686

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 Pandemic has prompted innovation and research to further understand not only SARS-CoV-2, but other respiratory viruses as well. Since the start of the pandemic there has been a lack in influenza collection and surveillance. In October 2021 the Life Sciences Testing Center at Northeastern University implemented the TaqPath™ COVID-19, Flu A, Flu B combo kit to test for multiple respiratory diseases among the University’s population. During this time the SARS-CoV-2 variant of concern, Omicron B.1.1.529, became the dominant strain in the greater Boston area. During this time an inverse correlation in the detection of positive SARS-CoV-2 and Influenza A was observed. More data is needed to determine if this observed inverse correlation on positivity rate is linked to public health measures or biological mechanism within the immune system.

2.
J Community Psychol ; 2022 Apr 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1797865

ABSTRACT

This manuscript reports on a youth-driven health assessment engaging youth of color in identifying community health priorities during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Photovoice, a participatory visual ethnographic health assessment strategy, was used to explore the question: What does health or healthiness mean to you and/or your community? Youth captured images that represented their priorities. The photos were discussed using the SHOWed framework and analyzed thematically. Four themes related to community health were identified. Additionally, youth captured their narrative of COVID-19 as "a revealing force that highlights systemic inequities, driving individuals and communities to both cultivate their resilience and take healthcare into their own hands in response to government and policy level failures." Youth are acutely aware of the historical and structural inequities that create multi-level barriers to healthcare access. Health inequities existed long before the pandemic, but the current crisis requires us to examine ways to transform the healthcare landscape moving forward.

3.
Clin Infect Dis ; 74(2): 271-277, 2022 01 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662113

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused one of the worst pandemics in recent history. Few reports have revealed that SARS-CoV-2 was spreading in the United States as early as the end of January. In this study, we aimed to determine if SARS-CoV-2 had been circulating in the Los Angeles (LA) area at a time when access to diagnostic testing for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was severely limited. METHODS: We used a pooling strategy to look for SARS-CoV-2 in remnant respiratory samples submitted for regular respiratory pathogen testing from symptomatic patients from November 2019 to early March 2020. We then performed sequencing on the positive samples. RESULTS: We detected SARS-CoV-2 in 7 specimens from 6 patients, dating back to mid-January. The earliest positive patient, with a sample collected on January 13, 2020 had no relevant travel history but did have a sibling with similar symptoms. Sequencing of these SARS-CoV-2 genomes revealed that the virus was introduced into the LA area from both domestic and international sources as early as January. CONCLUSIONS: We present strong evidence of community spread of SARS-CoV-2 in the LA area well before widespread diagnostic testing was being performed in early 2020. These genomic data demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 was being introduced into Los Angeles County from both international and domestic sources in January 2020.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Diagnostic Techniques and Procedures , Humans , Los Angeles/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies
4.
Frontiers in pediatrics ; 9, 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1567620

ABSTRACT

Objective: To understand which social, epidemiologic, and clinical risk factors are associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection in youth accessing care in a large, urban academic institution. Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study with case–control analyses in youth who received testing for SARS-CoV-2 at our academic institution in Los Angeles during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic (March–September 2020). Results: A total of 27,976 SARS-CoV-2 assays among 11,922 youth aged 0–24 years were performed, including 475 youth with positive SARS-CoV-2 results. Positivity rate was higher among older, African American, and Hispanic/Latinx youth. Cases were more likely to be from non-English-speaking households and have safety-net insurance. Zip codes with higher proportion of Hispanic/Latinx and residents living under the poverty line were associated with increased SARS-CoV-2 cases. Youth were more likely to have positive results if tested for exposure (OR 21.5, 95% CI 14.6–32.1) or recent travel (OR 1.5, 95% CI 1.0–2.3). Students were less likely to have positive results than essential worker youth (OR 0.5, 95% CI 0.3–0.8). Patterns of symptom presentation varied significantly by age group;number of symptoms correlated significantly with age in SARS-CoV-2 cases (r = 0.030, p < 0.001). SARS-CoV-2 viral load did not vary by symptom severity, but asymptomatic youth had lower median viral load than those with symptoms (21.5 vs. 26.7, p = 0.009). Conclusions: Socioeconomic factors are important drivers of SARS-CoV-2 infection in youth. Presence of symptoms, exposure, and travel can be used to drive testing in older youth. Policies for school reopening and infection prevention should be tailored differently for elementary schools and universities.

5.
Front Pediatr ; 9: 752247, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555865

ABSTRACT

Objective: To understand which social, epidemiologic, and clinical risk factors are associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection in youth accessing care in a large, urban academic institution. Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study with case-control analyses in youth who received testing for SARS-CoV-2 at our academic institution in Los Angeles during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic (March-September 2020). Results: A total of 27,976 SARS-CoV-2 assays among 11,922 youth aged 0-24 years were performed, including 475 youth with positive SARS-CoV-2 results. Positivity rate was higher among older, African American, and Hispanic/Latinx youth. Cases were more likely to be from non-English-speaking households and have safety-net insurance. Zip codes with higher proportion of Hispanic/Latinx and residents living under the poverty line were associated with increased SARS-CoV-2 cases. Youth were more likely to have positive results if tested for exposure (OR 21.5, 95% CI 14.6-32.1) or recent travel (OR 1.5, 95% CI 1.0-2.3). Students were less likely to have positive results than essential worker youth (OR 0.5, 95% CI 0.3-0.8). Patterns of symptom presentation varied significantly by age group; number of symptoms correlated significantly with age in SARS-CoV-2 cases (r = 0.030, p < 0.001). SARS-CoV-2 viral load did not vary by symptom severity, but asymptomatic youth had lower median viral load than those with symptoms (21.5 vs. 26.7, p = 0.009). Conclusions: Socioeconomic factors are important drivers of SARS-CoV-2 infection in youth. Presence of symptoms, exposure, and travel can be used to drive testing in older youth. Policies for school reopening and infection prevention should be tailored differently for elementary schools and universities.

7.
Clin Infect Dis ; 71(12): 3168-3173, 2020 12 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-612034

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Preliminary data from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pneumonia patients indicate that a cytokine storm may increase morbidity and mortality. Tocilizumab (anti-IL-6R) is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for treatment of cytokine storm associated with chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy. Here we examined compassionate use of tocilizumab in patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. METHODS: We report on a single-center study of tocilizumab in hospitalized patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. All patients had confirmed SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia and oxygen saturations <90% on oxygen support with most intubated. We examined clinical and laboratory parameters including oxygen and vasopressor requirements, cytokine profiles, and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels pre- and post-tocilizumab treatment. RESULTS: Twenty-seven SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia patients received one 400 mg dose of tocilizumab. Interleukin (IL)-6 was the predominant cytokine detected at tocilizumab treatment. Significant reductions in temperature and CRP were seen post-tocilizumab. However, 4 patients did not show rapid CRP declines, of whom 3 had poorer outcomes. Oxygen and vasopressor requirements diminished over the first week post-tocilizumab. Twenty-two patients required mechanical ventilation; at last follow-up, 16 were extubated. Adverse events and serious adverse events were minimal, but 2 deaths (7.4%) occurred that were felt unrelated to tocilizumab. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to published reports on the morbidity and mortality associated with SARS-CoV-2, tocilizumab appears to offer benefits in reducing inflammation, oxygen requirements, vasopressor support, and mortality. The rationale for tocilizumab treatment is supported by detection of IL-6 in pathogenic levels in all patients. Additional doses of tocilizumab may be needed for those showing slow declines in CRP. Proof of efficacy awaits randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , Compassionate Use Trials , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Treatment Outcome
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