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1.
Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management ; 48:390-394, 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1619405

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic that caused unprecedented havoc on global tourism industry will all blow over, however whether the tourists' real-time on-site emotional experience in the reopened tourism destinations is higher or lower than that of the period before the pandemic outbreak has not been studied. Since this is an important basis for managers to design tourist win-back strategies, this study empirically examines the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on tourists' real-time on-site emotional experience using geo-tagged check-in user-generated content data in China's National 5A scenic spots from November 7, 2019 to April 8, 2020. Results show that although the COVID-19 pandemic doesn't destroy the tourist attractions, tourists' real-time on-site emotional experience after the outbreak of COVID-19 is significantly lower than that of the period before the COVID-19 outbreak, suggesting that tourism destinations should not only focus on the recovery of tourist arrivals, but also pay attention to the tourist experience recovery during the tourism recovery stage. Results also provide empirical evidence and practical implications for destinations in tourist experience management during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.

2.
Nanoscale ; 2022 Jan 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621288

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 has caused a global pandemic and millions of deaths. It is imperative to develop effective countermeasures against the causative viral agent, SARS-CoV-2 and its many variants. Vaccines and therapeutic antibodies are the most effective approaches for preventing and treating COVID-19, respectively. SARS-CoV-2 enters host cells through the activities of the virus-surface spike (S) protein. Accordingly, the S protein is a prime target for vaccines and therapeutic antibodies. Dealing with particles with dimensions on the scale of nanometers, nanotechnology has emerged as a critical tool for rapidly designing and developing safe, effective, and urgently needed vaccines and therapeutics to control the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, nanotechnology was key to the fast-track approval of two mRNA vaccines for their wide use in human populations. In this review article, we first explore the roles of nanotechnology in battling COVID-19, including protein nanoparticles (for presentation of protein vaccines), lipid nanoparticles (for formulation with mRNAs), and nanobodies (as unique therapeutic antibodies). We then summarize the currently available COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics based on nanotechnology.

3.
Cell Death Differ ; 2022 Jan 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621232

ABSTRACT

Deaths caused by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are largely due to the lungs edema resulting from the disruption of the lung alveolo-capillary barrier, induced by SARS-CoV-2-triggered pulmonary cell apoptosis. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the proapoptotic role of SARS-CoV-2 is still unclear. Here, we revealed that SARS-CoV-2 membrane (M) protein could induce lung epithelial cells mitochondrial apoptosis. Notably, M protein stabilized B-cell lymphoma 2 (BCL-2) ovarian killer (BOK) via inhibiting its ubiquitination and promoted BOK mitochondria translocation. The endodomain of M protein was required for its interaction with BOK. Knockout of BOK by CRISPR/Cas9 increased cellular resistance to M protein-induced apoptosis. BOK was rescued in the BOK-knockout cells, which led to apoptosis induced by M protein. M protein induced BOK to trigger apoptosis in the absence of BAX and BAK. Furthermore, the BH2 domain of BOK was required for interaction with M protein and proapoptosis. In vivo M protein recombinant lentivirus infection induced caspase-associated apoptosis and increased alveolar-capillary permeability in the mouse lungs. BOK knockdown improved the lung edema due to lentivirus-M protein infection. Overall, M protein activated the BOK-dependent apoptotic pathway and thus exacerbated SARS-CoV-2 associated lung injury in vivo. These findings proposed a proapoptotic role for M protein in SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis, which may provide potential targets for COVID-19 treatments.

5.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22268948

ABSTRACT

Machine learning is becoming increasingly prominent in healthcare. Although its benefits are clear, growing attention is being given to how machine learning may exacerbate existing biases and disparities. In this study, we introduce an adversarial training framework that is capable of mitigating biases that may have been acquired through data collection or magnified during model development. For example, if one class is over-presented or errors/inconsistencies in practice are reflected in the training data, then a model can be biased by these. To evaluate our adversarial training framework, we used the statistical definition of equalized odds. We evaluated our model for the task of rapidly predicting COVID-19 for patients presenting to hospital emergency departments, and aimed to mitigate regional (hospital) and ethnic biases present. We trained our framework on a large, real-world COVID-19 dataset and demonstrated that adversarial training demonstrably improves outcome fairness (with respect to equalized odds), while still achieving clinically-effective screening performances (NPV>0.98). We compared our method to the benchmark set by related previous work, and performed prospective and external validation on four independent hospital cohorts. Our method can be generalized to any outcomes, models, and definitions of fairness.

6.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 9(1): ofab586, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1605279

ABSTRACT

Background: It remains unclear how changes in human mobility shaped the transmission dynamic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) during its first wave in the United States. Methods: By coupling a Bayesian hierarchical spatiotemporal model with reported case data and Google mobility data at the county level, we found that changes in movement were associated with notable changes in reported COVID-19 incidence rates about 5 to 7 weeks later. Results: Among all movement types, residential stay was the most influential driver of COVID-19 incidence rate, with a 10% increase 7 weeks ago reducing the disease incidence rate by 13% (95% credible interval, 6%-20%). A 10% increase in movement from home to workplaces, retail and recreation stores, public transit, grocery stores, and pharmacies 7 weeks ago was associated with an increase of 5%-8% in the COVID-10 incidence rate. In contrast, parks-related movement showed minimal impact. Conclusions: Policy-makers should anticipate such a delay when planning intervention strategies restricting human movement.

7.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22268984

ABSTRACT

We previously reported a household secondary attack rate (SAR) for SARS-CoV-2 of 18.9% through June 17, 2021. To examine how emerging variants and increased vaccination have affected transmission rates, we searched PubMed from June 18, 2021, through January 7, 2022. Meta-analyses used generalized linear mixed models to obtain SAR estimates and 95%CI, disaggregated by several covariates. SARs were used to estimate vaccine effectiveness based on the transmission probability for susceptibility (VES,p), infectiousness (VEI,p), and total vaccine effectiveness (VET,p). Household SAR for 27 studies with midpoints in 2021 was 35.8% (95%CI, 30.6%-41.3%), compared to 15.7% (95%CI, 13.3%-18.4%) for 62 studies with midpoints through April 2020. Household SARs were 38.0% (95%CI, 36.0%-40.0%), 30.8% (95%CI, 23.5%-39.3%), and 22.5% (95%CI, 18.6%-26.8%) for Alpha, Delta, and Beta, respectively. VEI,p, VES,p, and VET,p were 56.6% (95%CI, 28.7%-73.6%), 70.3% (95%CI, 59.3%-78.4%), and 86.8% (95%CI, 76.7%-92.5%) for full vaccination, and 27.5% (95%CI, -6.4%-50.7%), 43.9% (95%CI, 21.8%-59.7%), and 59.9% (95%CI, 34.4%-75.5%) for partial vaccination, respectively. Household contacts exposed to Alpha or Delta are at increased risk of infection compared to the original wild-type strain. Vaccination reduced susceptibility to infection and transmission to others. SummaryHousehold secondary attack rates (SARs) were higher for Alpha and Delta variants than previous estimates. SARs were higher to unvaccinated contacts than to partially or fully vaccinated contacts and were higher from unvaccinated index cases than from fully vaccinated index cases.

8.
J Med Internet Res ; 2021 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1596466

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Given the permeation of social media through society, rumors spread faster than ever before, significantly complicating government response to public health emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic. OBJECTIVE: We examined the characteristics and propagation of rumors during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic in China and evaluated the effectiveness of health authorities' release of correction announcements. METHODS: We retrieved rumors widely circulating on social media in China during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and assessed the effectiveness of official government clarifications and popular science articles refuting those rumors. RESULTS: We show that the number of rumors related to the domestic COVID-19 epidemic fluctuated widely in China between 12/1/2019 and 4/15/2020. Rumors mainly occurred in three provinces: Hubei, Zhejiang, and Guangxi. Personal social media accounts constituted the major source of media reports of the four most widely distributed rumors (71.7%, 92.4%, 99.2% and 99.7%). The number of rumors circulating was positively associated with the severity of the COVID-19 epidemic (rs=0.88, 95% CI: 0.81-0.93). Release of correction articles was associated with a substantial decrease in the proportion of rumor reports compared to accurate reports. The proportion of negative sentiments appearing among comments by citizens in response to media articles disseminating rumors and disseminating correct information did not differ significantly. CONCLUSIONS: Our results highlight the importance and urgency to monitor and correct false or misleading reports on websites and personal social media accounts. Circulation of rumors can influence public health, and governmental bodies should establish guidelines to monitor and mitigate the negative impact of such rumors.

9.
J Clin Invest ; 2021 Dec 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1595336

ABSTRACT

Infection with SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent of COVID-19, causes mild to moderate disease in most patients but carries a risk of morbidity and mortality. Seriously affected individuals manifest disorders of hemostasis and a cytokine storm, but it is not understood how these manifestations of severe COVID-19 are linked. Here, we showed that the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein engaged the CD42b receptor to activate platelet via two distinct signaling pathways, and promoted platelet-monocyte communication through the engagement of P-selectin/PGSL-1 and CD40L/CD40, which led to pro-inflammatory cytokine production by monocytes. These results explain why hypercoagulation, monocyte activation and a cytokine storm are correlated in severely affected COVID-19 patients, and suggest a potential target for therapeutic intervention.

10.
J Control Release ; 341: 702-715, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1587322

ABSTRACT

Hyper-inflammation associated with cytokine storm syndrome causes high mortality in patients with COVID-19. Glucocorticoids, such as methylprednisolone sodium succinate (MPSS), effectively inhibit this inflammatory response. However, frequent and chronic administration of glucocorticoids at high doses leads to hormone dependence and serious side effects. The aim of the present study was to combine nanoparticles with erythrocytes for the targeted delivery of MPSS to the lungs. Chitosan nanoparticles loading MPSS (MPSS-CSNPs) were prepared and adsorbed on the surface of red blood cells (RBC-MPSS-CSNPs) by non-covalent interaction. In vivo pharmacokinetic study indicated that RBC-hitchhiking could significantly reduce the plasma concentration of the drug and prolong the circulation time. The mean residence time (MRT) and area under the curve (AUC) of the RBC-MPSS-CSNPs group were significantly higher than those of the MPSS-CSNPs group and the MPSS injection group. Moreover, in vivo imaging and tissue distribution indicated that RBC-hitchhiking facilitated the accumulation of nanoparticles loading fluorescein in the lung, preventing uptake of these nanoparticles by the liver. Furthermore, compared with the MPSS-CSNPs and MPSS treatment groups, treatment with RBC-MPSS-CSNPs considerably inhibited the production of inflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α and IL-6, and consequently attenuated lung injury induced by lipopolysaccharide in rats. Therefore, RBC-hitchhiking is a potentially effective strategy for the delivery of nanoparticles to the lungs for the treatment of acute lung injury and acute respiratory distress syndrome.

11.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 18(24)2021 12 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1572453

ABSTRACT

The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in significant delays and cost overrun in construction projects. The implementation of health and safety (H&S) technologies is one of the most important strategies to alleviate the adverse impacts of COVID-19 on the construction industry and help the industry adapt to the new normal. This study aims to evaluate the adoption of H&S technologies for pandemic management in the construction sector under the COVID-19 pandemic. Semi-structured interviews with eighteen practitioners engaged from construction companies and technology firms were conducted to collect their views on the driving forces and issues of the adoption of H&S technologies for pandemic management in Chinese construction projects. The results reveal that the major H&S technologies used included the health quick response (QR) code system, artificial intelligence (AI)-powered fever monitoring, and site access control system. These technologies were reported to be effective in preventing the spread of the pandemic in workplaces. The findings of the study amplify that the pandemic may serve as an acceleration of the adoption of H&S technologies in the construction sector. Other technologies, such as building information modeling, drones, AI-based safety monitoring, and robotics, however, were seldom used in the studied projects. The interviewees addressed several problems regarding the implementation of these technologies. High costs of technologies, a lack of client support, and disruptions to the normal work process were the main hurdles of the adoption of these technologies. The results indicated that the external influence factor-the COVID-19 pandemic-could considerably drive the use of H&S technologies, whereas the internal influence factors-cost and compatibility of technology-might be the major barriers to technology adoption. To encourage the wider use of H&S technologies in construction, the government is recommended to support the technology transformation by granting financial subsidies for costs involved in innovation adoption. Project owners may consider investing substantially in H&S technologies that can strengthen their resilient and innovative ability to adapt to the post-COVID-19 landscape. The present results will be useful to industry stakeholders and researchers interested in developing H&S technologies for combating the COVID-19 pandemic and future crises.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Artificial Intelligence , China/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Technology
12.
BMC Public Health ; 21(1): 2239, 2021 Dec 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1566517

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 patients with long incubation period were reported in clinical practice and tracing of close contacts, but their epidemiological or clinical features remained vague. METHODS: We analyzed 11,425 COVID-19 cases reported between January-August, 2020 in China. The accelerated failure time model, Logistic and modified Poisson regression models were used to investigate the determinants of prolonged incubation period, as well as their association with clinical severity and transmissibility, respectively. RESULT: Among local cases, 268 (10.2%) had a prolonged incubation period of > 14 days, which was more frequently seen among elderly patients, those residing in South China, with disease onset after Level I response measures administration, or being exposed in public places. Patients with prolonged incubation period had lower risk of severe illness (ORadjusted = 0.386, 95% CI: 0.203-0.677). A reduced transmissibility was observed for the primary patients with prolonged incubation period (50.4, 95% CI: 32.3-78.6%) than those with an incubation period of ≤14 days. CONCLUSIONS: The study provides evidence supporting a prolonged incubation period that exceeded 2 weeks in over 10% for COVID-19. Longer monitoring periods than 14 days for quarantine or persons potentially exposed to SARS-CoV-2 should be justified in extreme cases, especially for those elderly.

13.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-296041

ABSTRACT

Background Uncertainty in patients’ COVID-19 status contributes to treatment delays, nosocomial transmission, and operational pressures in hospitals. However, typical turnaround times for batch-processed laboratory PCR tests remain 12-24h. Although rapid antigen lateral flow testing (LFD) has been widely adopted in UK emergency care settings, sensitivity is limited. We recently demonstrated that AI-driven triage (CURIAL-1.0) allows high-throughput COVID-19 screening using clinical data routinely available within 1h of arrival to hospital. Here we aimed to determine operational and safety improvements over standard-care, performing external/prospective evaluation across four NHS trusts with updated algorithms optimised for generalisability and speed, and deploying a novel lab-free screening pathway in a UK emergency department. Methods We rationalised predictors in CURIAL-1.0 to optimise separately for generalisability and speed, developing CURIAL-Lab with vital signs and routine laboratory blood predictors (FBC, U&E, LFT, CRP) and CURIAL-Rapide with vital signs and FBC alone. Models were calibrated during training to 90% sensitivity and validated externally for unscheduled admissions to Portsmouth University Hospitals, University Hospitals Birmingham and Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS trusts, and prospectively during the second-wave of the UK COVID-19 epidemic at Oxford University Hospitals (OUH). Predictions were generated using first-performed blood tests and vital signs and compared against confirmatory viral nucleic acid testing. Next, we retrospectively evaluated a novel clinical pathway triaging patients to COVID-19-suspected clinical areas where either model prediction or LFD results were positive, comparing sensitivity and NPV with LFD results alone. Lastly, we deployed CURIAL-Rapide alongside an approved point-of-care FBC analyser (OLO;SightDiagnostics, Israel) to provide lab-free COVID-19 screening in the John Radcliffe Hospital’s Emergency Department (Oxford, UK), as trust-approved service improvement. Our primary improvement outcome was time-to-result availability;secondary outcomes were sensitivity, specificity, PPV, and NPV assessed against a PCR reference standard. We compared CURIAL-Rapide’s performance with clinician triage and LFD results within standard-care. Results 72,223 patients met eligibility criteria across external and prospective validation sites. Model performance was consistent across trusts (CURIAL-Lab: AUROCs range 0.858-0.881;CURIAL-Rapide 0.836-0.854), with highest sensitivity achieved at Portsmouth University Hospitals (CURIAL-Lab:84.1% [95% Wilson’s score CIs 82.5-85.7];CURIAL-Rapide:83.5% [81.8 - 85.1]) at specificities of 71.3% (95% Wilson’s score CIs: 70.9 - 71.8) and 63.6% (63.1 - 64.1). For 3,207 patients receiving LFD-triage within routine care for OUH admissions between December 23, 2021 and March 6, 2021, a combined clinical pathway increased sensitivity from 56.9% for LFDs alone (95% CI 51.7-62.0) to 88.2% with CURIAL-Rapide (84.4-91.1;AUROC 0.919) and 85.6% with CURIAL-Lab (81.6-88.9;AUROC 0.925). 520 patients were prospectively enrolled for point-of-care FBC analysis between February 18, 2021 and May 10, 2021, of whom 436 received confirmatory PCR testing within routine care and 10 (2.3%) tested positive. Median time from patient arrival to availability of CURIAL-Rapide result was 45:00 min (32-64), 16 minutes (26.3%) sooner than LFD results (61:00 min, 37-99;log-rank p<0.0001), and 6:52 h (90.2%) sooner than PCR results (7:37 h, 6:05-15:39;p<0.0001). Sensitivity and specificity of CURIAL-Rapide were 87.5% (52.9-97.8) and 85.4% (81.3-88.7), therefore achieving high NPV (99.7%, 98.2-99.9). CURIAL-Rapide correctly excluded COVID-19 for 58.5% of negative patients who were triaged by a clinician to ‘COVID-19-suspected’ (amber) areas. Impact CURIAL-Lab & CURIAL-Rapide are generalisable, high-throughput screening tests for COVID-19, rapidly excluding the illness with higher NPV than LFDs. CURIAL-Rapide can be used in comb nation with near-patient FBC analysis for rapid, lab-free screening, and may reduce the number of COVID-19-negative patients triaged to enhanced precautions (‘amber’) clinical areas.

14.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-293463

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused a global pandemic of novel corona virus disease (COVID-19). The neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) targeting the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 are among the most promising strategies to prevent and treat COVID-19. However, SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) profoundly reduced the efficacies of most of mAbs and vaccines approved for clinical use. Herein, we demonstrated mAb 35B5 efficiently neutralizes both wild-type (WT) SARS-CoV-2 and VOCs, including B.1.617.2 (delta) variant, in vitro and in vivo . Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) revealed that 35B5 neutralizes SARS-CoV-2 by targeting a unique epitope that avoids the prevailing mutation sites on RBD identified in circulating VOCs, providing the molecular basis for its pan-neutralizing efficacy. The 35B5-binding epitope could also be exploited for the rational design of a universal SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

15.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 6923, 2021 11 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1537314

ABSTRACT

Nationwide nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) have been effective at mitigating the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), but their broad impact on other diseases remains under-investigated. Here we report an ecological analysis comparing the incidence of 31 major notifiable infectious diseases in China in 2020 to the average level during 2014-2019, controlling for temporal phases defined by NPI intensity levels. Respiratory diseases and gastrointestinal or enteroviral diseases declined more than sexually transmitted or bloodborne diseases and vector-borne or zoonotic diseases. Early pandemic phases with more stringent NPIs were associated with greater reductions in disease incidence. Non-respiratory diseases, such as hand, foot and mouth disease, rebounded substantially towards the end of the year 2020 as the NPIs were relaxed. Statistical modeling analyses confirm that strong NPIs were associated with a broad mitigation effect on communicable diseases, but resurgence of non-respiratory diseases should be expected when the NPIs, especially restrictions of human movement and gathering, become less stringent.

16.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-470356

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has caused a global pandemic of novel corona virus disease (COVID-19). The neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) targeting the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 are among the most promising strategies to prevent and treat COVID-19. However, SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) profoundly reduced the efficacies of most of mAbs and vaccines approved for clinical use. Herein, we demonstrated mAb 35B5 efficiently neutralizes both wild-type (WT) SARS-CoV-2 and VOCs, including B.1.617.2 (delta) variant, in vitro and in vivo. Cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) revealed that 35B5 neutralizes SARS-CoV-2 by targeting a unique epitope that avoids the prevailing mutation sites on RBD identified in circulating VOCs, providing the molecular basis for its pan-neutralizing efficacy. The 35B5-binding epitope could also be exploited for the rational design of a universal SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

17.
J Med Internet Res ; 2021 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1528770

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Given the permeation of social media through society, rumors spread faster than ever before, significantly complicating government response to public health emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic. OBJECTIVE: We examined the characteristics and propagation of rumors during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic in China and evaluated the effectiveness of health authorities' release of correction announcements. METHODS: We retrieved rumors widely circulating on social media in China during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and assessed the effectiveness of official government clarifications and popular science articles refuting those rumors. RESULTS: We show that the number of rumors related to the domestic COVID-19 epidemic fluctuated widely in China between 12/1/2019 and 4/15/2020. Rumors mainly occurred in three provinces: Hubei, Zhejiang, and Guangxi. Personal social media accounts constituted the major source of media reports of the four most widely distributed rumors (71.7%, 92.4%, 99.2% and 99.7%). The number of rumors circulating was positively associated with the severity of the COVID-19 epidemic (rs=0.88, 95% CI: 0.81-0.93). Release of correction articles was associated with a substantial decrease in the proportion of rumor reports compared to accurate reports. The proportion of negative sentiments appearing among comments by citizens in response to media articles disseminating rumors and disseminating correct information did not differ significantly. CONCLUSIONS: Our results highlight the importance and urgency to monitor and correct false or misleading reports on websites and personal social media accounts. Circulation of rumors can influence public health, and governmental bodies should establish guidelines to monitor and mitigate the negative impact of such rumors.

18.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2021 Nov 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1522157

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To combat the COVID-19 pandemic, nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPI) were implemented worldwide, which impacted a broad spectrum of acute respiratory infections (ARI). METHODS: Etiologically diagnostic data from 142 559 cases with ARIs, who were tested for eight viral pathogens (influenza virus, IFV; respiratory syncytial virus, RSV; human parainfluenza virus, HPIV; human adenovirus; human metapneumovirus; human coronavirus, HCoV; human bocavirus, HBoV, and human rhinovirus, HRV) between 2012 and 2021, were analyzed to assess the changes of respiratory infections in China during the first COVID-19 pandemic year compared to pre-pandemic years. RESULTS: Test positive rates of all respiratory viruses decreased during 2020, compared to the average levels during 2012-2019, with changes ranging from -17·2% for RSV to -87·6% for IFV. Sharp decreases mostly occurred between February and August when massive NPIs remained active, although HRV rebounded to the historical level during the summer. While IFV and HMPV were consistently suppressed year round, RSV, HPIV, HCoV, HRV HBov resurged and went beyond historical levels during September, 2020-January, 2021, after NPIs were largely relaxed and schools reopened. Resurgence was more prominent among children younger than 18 years and in Northern China. These observations remain valid after accounting for seasonality and long-term trend of each virus. CONCLUSIONS: Activities of respiratory viral infections were reduced substantially in the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic, and massive NPIs were likely the main driver. Lifting of NPIs can lead to resurgence of viral infections, particularly in children.

19.
Transl Res ; 2021 Nov 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1521582

ABSTRACT

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is a highly pathogenic human coronavirus (CoV). Belonging to the same beta-CoV genus as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-1 (SARS-CoV-1) and SARS-CoV-2, MERS-CoV has a significantly higher fatality rate with limited human-to-human transmissibility. MERS-CoV causes sporadic outbreaks, but no vaccines have yet been approved for use in humans, thus calling for continued efforts to develop effective vaccines against this important CoV. Similar to SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-2, MERS-CoV contains four structural proteins, among which the surface spike (S) protein has been used as a core component in the majority of currently developed MERS-CoV vaccines. Here, we illustrate the importance of the MERS-CoV S protein as a key vaccine target and provide an update on the currently developed MERS-CoV vaccines, including those based on DNAs, proteins, virus-like particles or nanoparticles, and viral vectors. Additionally, we describe approaches for designing MERS-CoV mRNA vaccines and explore the role and importance of naturally occurring pseudo-nucleosides in the design of effective MERS-CoV mRNA vaccines. This review also provides useful insights into designing and evaluating mRNA vaccines against other viral pathogens.

20.
Parasit Vectors ; 14(1): 248, 2021 May 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1506030

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Swine coccidiosis, a protozoan disease caused by coccidia, can result in diarrhoea and weight loss in piglets and even economic losses in the pig industry. Here, we report the first systematic review and meta-analysis of the prevalence of coccidia (including Eimeria spp. and Cystoisospora suis) in pigs in China. METHODS: Five databases (PubMed, ScienceDirect, Chinese Web of Knowledge, Wanfang, and Chongqing VIP) were searched and 50 studies (46,926 domestic pigs, 22 provinces) ultimately identified pertaining to the prevalence of coccidia infection from 1980 to 2019. We incorporated the effect size using the random-effects model in the "meta" package in R software and conducted univariate and multivariate meta-regression analyses using a mixed-effects model. RESULTS: The pooled prevalence rate of coccidia in pigs was 21.9%, including the C. suis infection rate of 9.1%. The highest prevalence of coccidia (39.6%) was found in northwest China, and this region also presented the lowest prevalence of C. suis (4.7%). In the subgroup analysis based on sampling year, the highest prevalence of coccidia was detected in 2001 or earlier (32.6%), whereas the lowest rate was found in 2012 or later (14.3%). An opposite trend was observed for C. suis (5.5% in 2000 or earlier vs 14.4% in 2000 or later). The prevalence of coccidia in extensive farming systems (29.5%) was higher than that in intensive farming systems (17.3%). In contrast, the point estimate of C. suis prevalence was lower in the extensive farming systems (5.1%) than in the intensive farming systems (10.0%), but the difference was not significant (P > 0.05). Among the four age categories, the highest total coccidia prevalence (26.2%) was found in finishing pigs, followed by suckling piglets (19.9%), whereas the highest prevalence of C. suis (14.9%) was observed in suckling piglets. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that coccidia infection in Chinese pigs is common, although the prevalence of C. suis in pigs does not receive sufficient attention. We recommend the rational use of anticoccidial drugs to avoid drug resistance and the development of preventive and control measures for C. suis to reduce the incidence of swine coccidiosis.


Subject(s)
Coccidiosis/epidemiology , Swine Diseases/epidemiology , Animals , China/epidemiology , Coccidia/classification , Coccidia/genetics , Coccidia/isolation & purification , Coccidia/physiology , Coccidiosis/parasitology , Feces/parasitology , Prevalence , Swine , Swine Diseases/parasitology
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