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1.
Frontiers in Public Health ; 10, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2199497

ABSTRACT

ObjectiveThis study aimed to provide a basis for epidemic prevention and control measures as well as the management of re-positive personnel by analyzing and summarizing the characteristics of re-positive patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Delta variant infections discharged from a hospital in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region in 2021. MethodsThis case-control study included a total of 45 patients with Delta variant infections diagnosed in the Fourth People's Hospital of the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region between October 17 and November 28, 2021. Based on the nucleic acid test results post-discharge, the patients were dichotomized into re-positive and non-re-positive groups. Based on the time of the first re-positive test, the re-positive group was further divided into ResultsOf the 45 total patients, 16 were re-positive (re-positivity rate: 35.6%), including four patients who were re-positive after 2 weeks (re-positivity rate: 8.8%). The median time of the first re-positive after discharge was 7 days (IQR: 14-3). The re-positive group was younger than the non-re-positive group (35 vs. 53, P < 0.05), had a higher proportion of patients who were not receiving antiviral therapy (56.2 vs. 17.2%, P < 0.05). The median CT value of nucleic acid in the re-positive group was considerably greater than that at admission (36.7 vs. 22.6 P < 0.05). The findings demonstrated that neutralizing antibody treatment significantly raised the average IgG antibody level in patients, particularly in those who had not received COVID-19 vaccine (P < 0.05). The median lowest nucleic acid CT value of the >= 7 days group during the re-positive period and the immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody level at discharge were lower than those in the <7 days group (P < 0.05). When compared to the non-positive group, patients in the >= 7 days group had a higher median virus nucleic acid CT value (27.1 vs. 19.2, P < 0.05) and absolute number of lymphocytes at admission (1,360 vs. 952, P < 0.05), and a lower IgG antibody level at discharge (P < 0.05). ConclusionsIn conclusion, this study found that: (1) The re-positivity rate of SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant infection in this group was 35.6%, while the re-positivity rate was the same as that of the original strain 2 weeks after discharge (8.0%). (2) Young people, patients who did not use antiviral therapy or had low IgG antibody levels at discharge were more likely to have re-positive. And the CT value of nucleic acid at the time of initial infection was higher in re-positive group. We speculated that the higher the CT value of nucleic acid at the time of initial infection, the longer the intermittent shedding time of the virus. (3) Re-positive patients were asymptomatic. The median CT value of nucleic acid was > 35 at the re-positive time, and the close contacts were not detected as positive. The overall transmission risk of re-positive patients is low.

2.
Frontiers in Psychiatry ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2199405

ABSTRACT

BackgroundWhile repeated shutdown and lockdown measures helped contain the spread of SARS-CoV-2 during the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing and self-isolation negatively impacted global mental health in 2020 and 2021. Although suicide rates did reportedly not increase during the first months of the pandemic, long-term data, and data on the quality of serious violent suicide attempts (SVSAs) are not available to date. Materials and methodsOrthopaedic trauma patient visits to the emergency department (ED), ED trauma team activations, and SVSAs were retrospectively evaluated from January 2019 until May 2021 in four Level-I Trauma Centers in Berlin, Germany. SVSAs were assessed for suicide method, injury pattern and severity, type of treatment, and length of hospital stay. ResultsSignificantly fewer orthopaedic trauma patients presented to EDs during the pandemic (n = 70,271) compared to the control (n = 84,864) period (p = 0.0017). ED trauma team activation numbers remained unchanged. SVSAs (corrected for seasonality) also remained unchanged during control (n = 138) and pandemic (n = 129) periods, and no differences were observed for suicide methods, injury patterns, or length of hospital stay. ConclusionOur data emphasize that a previously reported rise in psychological stress during the COVID-19 pandemic does not coincide with increased SVSA rates or changes in quality of SVSAs.

3.
Frontiers in Psychology ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2199199

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the tourism and hospitality industries worldwide. Tourism destination marketing has been an heated focus in tourism and hospitality academia, it is widely believed that it can promote the revival of industries in the post-pandemic era. But there is a lack of research on different graphic presentation forms in tourism advertisements. To bridge the gap in the related literature, this study aims at studying the impact of the image and text presentation forms of the scenic spot's name in tourism advertisements on tourists' visit intention to the tourist destination city by combining the theory of constructivism in cognitive psychology, SOR model, and affective-cognitive model to conduct a 2 x 2 between-group experiment. The study found that when the text part contains the scenic spot's name, the tourism advertisement has a significant impact on tourists' perceived advertising effectiveness, destination affective image, and visit intention. The results of eye tracking analysis also showed that fixation points are primarily distributed in the text part. Furthermore, this study explored the chain mediating mechanism of perceived advertising effectiveness and destination affective image and discovered that the impact of the text presentation form on the visit intention can be realized through the mediating effect of perceived advertising effectiveness and destination affective image. This study puts forward some suggestions for the tourism advertising and destination marketing of scenic spots with high-familiarity of destination cities with low-familiarity and improving the image of tourist destination cities.

4.
Frontiers in Pharmacology ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2199112

ABSTRACT

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infects both people and animals and may cause significant respiratory problems, including lung illness: Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Swabs taken from the throat and nose of people who have the illness or are suspected of having it have shown this pathogenic virus. When SARS-CoV-2 infects the upper and lower respiratory tracts, it may induce moderate to severe respiratory symptoms, as well as the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines including interleukin 6 (IL-6). COVID-19-induced reduction of IL-6 in an inflammatory state may have a hitherto undiscovered therapeutic impact. Many inflammatory disorders, including viral infections, has been found to be regulated by IL-6. In individuals with COVID-19, one of the primary inflammatory agents that causes inflammatory storm is IL-6. It promotes the inflammatory response of virus infection, including the virus infection caused by SARS-CoV-2, and provides a new diagnostic and therapeutic strategy. In this review article, we highlighted the functions of IL-6 in the coronavirus, especially in COVID-19, showing that IL-6 activation plays an important function in the progression of coronavirus and is a rational therapeutic goal for inflammation aimed at coronavirus.

5.
Frontiers in Immunology ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2198919

ABSTRACT

BackgroundDrug repurposing is a fast and effective way to develop drugs for an emerging disease such as COVID-19. The main challenges of effective drug repurposing are the discoveries of the right therapeutic targets and the right drugs for combating the disease. MethodsHere, we present a systematic repurposing approach, combining Homopharma and hierarchal systems biology networks (HiSBiN), to predict 327 therapeutic targets and 21,233 drug-target interactions of 1,592 FDA drugs for COVID-19. Among these multi-target drugs, eight candidates (along with pimozide and valsartan) were tested and methotrexate was identified to affect 14 therapeutic targets suppressing SARS-CoV-2 entry, viral replication, and COVID-19 pathologies. Through the use of in vitro (EC50 = 0.4 mu M) and in vivo models, we show that methotrexate is able to inhibit COVID-19 via multiple mechanisms. ResultsOur in vitro studies illustrate that methotrexate can suppress SARS-CoV-2 entry and replication by targeting furin and DHFR of the host, respectively. Additionally, methotrexate inhibits all four SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern. In a Syrian hamster model for COVID-19, methotrexate reduced virus replication, inflammation in the infected lungs. By analysis of transcriptomic analysis of collected samples from hamster lung, we uncovered that neutrophil infiltration and the pathways of innate immune response, adaptive immune response and thrombosis are modulated in the treated animals. ConclusionsWe demonstrate that this systematic repurposing approach is potentially useful to identify pharmaceutical targets, multi-target drugs and regulated pathways for a complex disease. Our findings indicate that methotrexate is established as a promising drug against SARS-CoV-2 variants and can be used to treat lung damage and inflammation in COVID-19, warranting future evaluation in clinical trials.

6.
Molecular Genetics Microbiology and Virology ; 37(3):159-166, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2198383

ABSTRACT

The 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is the disease that has been identified as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), but the prophylactic treatment of SARS-CoV-2 is still under investigation. The effective delivery of eukaryotic expression plasmids to the immune system's inductive cells constitutes an essential requirement for generating effective DNA vaccines. Here, we have explored the use of Salmonella typhimurium as vehicles to deliver expression plasmids orally. The attenuated Salmonella phoP was constructed by the one-step gene inactivation method, and plasmid-encoded the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 was transform into the Salmonella phoP by electroporation. Western blot experiment was used for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 expression on 293T cells. Wistar rats were immunized orally with Salmonella that carried a eukaryotic expression plasmid once a week for three consecutive weeks. The ELISA was performed to measure the SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG at rat's serum samples. pSARS-CoV-2 can be successfully expression on 293T cells, and all immunized animals generated immunity against the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, indicating that a Salmonella -based vaccine carrying the Spike gene can elicit SARS-CoV-2specific secondary immune responses in rats. Oral delivery of SARS-CoV-2 DNA vaccines using attenuated Salmonella typhimurium may help develop a protective vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 infection.

7.
Bmc Psychology ; 10(1), 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2196476

ABSTRACT

BackgroundThe COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on the mental well-being of students worldwide. There is a scarcity of information on the mental health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on university students in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This study aimed to investigate the mental health impact of the COVID-19, including depression, anxiety and resilience among a sample of university students in the UAE. MethodsA cross-sectional study using an online survey was conducted from September to November 2021. The patient health questionnaire (PHQ-9), generalized anxiety disorder-7 (GAD-7) and Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISC-10) were used to assess depression, anxiety, and resilience. The COVID-19 impact was assessed using a list of questions. ResultsOnly, 798 students completed the survey and were analyzed for this study. Overall, 74.8% of the students were females, 91.2% were never married, and 66.3% were UAE-nationals. Based on PHQ-9 and GAD-7 cut-off scores (& GE;10), four out of ten of the students self-reported moderate to severe depression (40.9%) and anxiety (39.1%). Significantly higher mean PHQ-9 and GAD-7 scores were found among students who were impacted by COVID-19 than those non-impacted (mean PHQ-9 = 9.51 & PLUSMN;6.39 and 6.80 & PLUSMN;6.34;p = 0.001, respectively) and (mean GAD-7 = 9.03 & PLUSMN;6.00 and 8.54 & PLUSMN;6.02;respectively, p < 0.001). Female students who were impacted by COVID-19 had statistically significant higher depression and anxiety scores (mean PHQ-9 of 9.14 & PLUSMN;5.86 vs. 6.83 & PLUSMN;6.25, respectively;p < 0.001) than the non-impacted females (mean GAD-7 of 9.57 & PLUSMN;6.32 vs. 5.15 & PLUSMN;3.88, respectively;p = 0.005). Never married students had significantly higher PHQ-9 and GAD-7 scores than ever-married (9.31 & PLUSMN;6.37 vs. 6.93 & PLUSMN;5.47, P = 0.003) and (8.89 & PLUSMN;6.11 vs. 7.13 & PLUSMN;5.49, respectively;p = 0.017). ConclusionsThe results of this study demonstrate that the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted the mental health of this sample of university students in terms of depression and anxiety. The results highlight the need to adopt culturally appropriate interventions for university students and focus on vulnerable groups.

8.
Current Directions in Psychological Science ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2195014

ABSTRACT

From the COVID-19 global pandemic to racial injustice and the continued impact of climate change on communities across the globe, the past couple of years have demonstrated the need for a greater understanding of how to protect people from the negative consequences of stress. Here, I outline a perspective on how the brain's reward system might be an important, but often understudied, protective mechanism for stress resilience and stress-related health outcomes. I describe work suggesting that engagement of the reward system inhibits the stress response and is associated with improved health outcomes, including reduced depressive symptomatology and slowed cancer progression. I then highlight important future directions for translational research and illustrate the value of this perspective for improving behavioral interventions in clinical psychology and beyond.

9.
Journal of Humanistic Psychology ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2194711

ABSTRACT

Throughout the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Maori, Indigenous people of New Zealand, public health response has been guided by the collaborative and relationship-centered principles of te ao Maori, the Maori world. This article presents the communications response to COVID-19 by Iwi, tribes, within Te Ranga Tupua (TRT), a collective of Iwi from the South Taranaki/Whanganui/Rangitikei/Ruapehu regions of Aotearoa, New Zealand. This research uses a qualitative design based on a Kaupapa Maori approach. The research presented here focuses on the intersect between COVID-19-related public health messaging, and the application of Maori knowledge and worldviews to establish equitable protection for Maori. By prioritizing equity, self-determination, and adopting a holistic approach to well-being, TRT have been able to re-frame public health messaging in accordance with our tikanga, customs, and notions of Maori public health. We provide a snapshot of how a unique tribal collective deployed its resource to provide culturally appropriate information and communication responses to the first wave of COVID-19 in 2020, and then built on this knowledge and experience providing a modified and more strategic response to the pandemic in 2021.

10.
Digital Government: Research and Practice ; 3(2), 2022.
Article in English | Scopus | ID: covidwho-2194070

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus has activated the main constitutional mechanisms set in place to face exceptional circumstances in all countries that can be considered consolidated democracies. Constitutional systems make it possible for constituent powers to limit fundamental rights that are the cornerstone for the full exercise of citizenship in a democracy. Thus, for example, lockdowns and limitations on gatherings, de iure and de facto, limit or eliminate the right to assembly. Exception—constitutional instruments, that also allow for the transfer of parliamentary functions to the Executive power, are mostly designed, and many times thought to be exclusively used in extreme circumstances: wars or natural disasters that have an immediate impact on millions of people (causing death, the loss of the home or massive displacement, etc.). In these cases, it is assumed that parliaments and citizens must enter survival mode, and because of that, there is no reason to think that any type of citizen participation is possible. However, despite the gravity of COVID-19, the situation does not conform to the pattern I have just described. Most citizens, surely those that tend to participate in the ordinary democratic process, have been able to adapt their lives to the confines of their own homes thanks to civic responsibility and technology: work, education, socialization, shopping, etc. If this is so, why has the decision-making process not been able to adapt to the COVID pandemic? Furthermore, if citizen input is essential to control the situation and social distancing is a must, why is technology not the cornerstone of citizen's data recollection? This work analyzes the existing constitutional framework and the main governmental measures (norms and actions) adopted, in order to detect in which stages (out of the five basic policy and law-making stages) citizen participation could have been integrated, and how CrowdLaw might have helped to make participation more effective, and if CrowdLaw can help palliate the constitutional impact resulting from a pandemic, particularly in regard to the exercise of citizen participation, and in improving the quality and effectiveness of any measure that has been adopted. I argue that constitutional norms are compatible with CrowdLaw because they do not rule out the activation of CrowdLaw procedures neither in normal nor in exceptional circumstances. © 2022 Association for Computing Machinery.

11.
Scandinavian Journal of Immunology ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2193235

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is the causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The disease presents different degrees of severity related to the antiviral response of the host. According to clinical manifestations, patients could show mild, moderate and severe COVID-19. Regarding immunological aspects, an increased interferon (IFN) response in COVID-19 patients with mild and moderate symptoms were observed;however, in severe COVID-19, IFN response is decreased. Patients with severe COVID-19 display a hyperinflammatory disorder that leads to acute respiratory distress syndrome. Interestingly, the expression and activation of AIM2, a receptor induced by IFN, play an important role in the onset of antiviral response. In this review, we discuss the possible role of AIM2 during SARS-CoV-2 infection. We summarize the studies reporting the expression and activity of proteins involved upstream and downstream of AIM2-inflammasome activation, such as IFN, ASC, Caspase-1, IL-1 beta, IL-18, free-dsDNA, IFI16, as well as SARS-CoV-2 viral load, cell death in groups of COVID-19 patients with different clinical outcomes to infer the possible contribution of AIM2 in antiviral response of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

12.
International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2191395

ABSTRACT

PurposeCOVID-19 affects the peer-to-peer (P2P) accommodation industry. With regard to prospect theory, individuals' negative emotions, such as institutional distrust, are easily evoked and impede consumption intention in an environment of permeating uncertainty and risks. While existing research indicates the negative effects of institutional distrust, scant research has explored its antecedents and intervention mechanisms. This study thus aims to unveil the influencing factors and explore mitigating mechanisms of customers' institutional distrust of P2P accommodations. Design/methodology/approachOnline reviews data were used to identify the underlying critical issues. The authors developed a model to depict how institutional distrust is formed under the boundary condition of subjective norm by the results. The model was verified using a questionnaire survey. Finally, in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted to ensure its robustness. FindingsThe external environment and internal platform effectiveness are two critical aspects affecting institutional distrust of P2P accommodations. The external environment influences institutional distrust through perceived threat, explaining the formation mechanism of customers' institutional distrust through customers' internal psychology. Furthermore, the authors found subjective norm moderating the effect of perceived threat on customers' institutional distrust. Research limitations/implicationsThis is one of the first studies, to the best of the authors' knowledge, to explore institutional distrust of P2P accommodations after COVID-19. The finding contributes to studies on P2P accommodation by uncovering the contingent role of subjective norm in influencing customers' institutional distrust. Originality/valueThis is a pioneering study that explores the antecedents and mitigating mechanisms of institutional distrust of P2P accommodations during the new normal of COVID-19.

13.
Proceedings of the Royal Society a-Mathematical Physical and Engineering Sciences ; 478(2268), 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2191265

ABSTRACT

Tiered social distancing policies have been adopted by many governments to mitigate the harmful consequences of COVID-19. Such policies have a number of well-established features, i.e. they are short-term, adaptive (to the changing epidemiological conditions), and based on a multiplicity of indicators of the prevailing epidemic activity. Here, we use ideas from Behavioural Epidemiology to represent tiered policies in an SEIRS model by using a composite information index including multiple indicators of current and past epidemic activity mimicking those used by governments during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as transmission intensity, infection incidence and hospitals' occupancy. In its turn, the dynamics of the information index is assumed to endogenously inform the governmental social distancing interventions. The resulting model is described by a hereditary system showing a noteworthy property, i.e. a dependency of the endemic levels of epidemiological variables from initial conditions. This is a consequence of the need to normalize the different indicators to pool them into a single index. Simulations suggest a rich spectrum of possible results. These include policy suggestions and identify pitfalls and undesired outcomes, such as a worsening of epidemic control, that can arise following such types of approaches to epidemic responses.

14.
European Journal of Social Work ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2187438

ABSTRACT

Since the winter of 2020, COVID-19 has significantly changed the lives of many people. The aim of the present study is to explore how social workers specialised in the field of domestic violence (DV) balance the expectation and need to protect themselves from infection with the expectation and need to protect their clients and how this balancing affects their discretion. The method was qualitative interviews with social workers, team leaders, and managers in two Swedish municipalities. The results offer insights in how professionals experience and respond to changing conditions of social work and the potential consequences for victimised women. Three street-level responses to pandemic restrictions are presented: professionals who complied with new restrictions, professionals who negotiated some far-reaching restrictions, and professionals who resisted restrictions. Consequences for the social services, women experiencing DV, and civil society are discussed. The authors suggest that the results provide learning opportunities for managers and social workers to better understand the complex everyday life that surrounds their mission.

15.
Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development ; 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2186824

ABSTRACT

With a post-pandemic churn gaining steam, foreign language (FL) learning and teaching are becoming increasingly challenging. This study investigated young FL learners' language mindsets, negative emotions, emotion regulation, and their relations in online FL classes during the Covid-19 pandemic. An altogether 640 young Chinese FL learners aged between 11 and 19 from a snowball sampling were enrolled and surveyed. Three major findings were obtained. First, the participants overall reported a higher growth mindset toward their FL learning and were experiencing a medium magnitude of negative emotions in online FL classes, with the feelings of shame, anxiety, and boredom being strongest, followed by anger and hopelessness. They demonstrated a relatively high level of emotion regulation when learning the FL online. Second, the growth language mindset (significantly) negatively and the fixed language mindset significantly and positively predicted the participants' negative emotions in online classes. Third, a 'growth language mindset - emotion regulation - emotion' pattern emerged in the data, with the emotion regulation mediating the predictive effects of the participants' growth language mindset on negative emotions (boredom and anger) in online FL learning. Pedagogical implications and suggestions for further research were also discussed.

16.
Journal of Business Research ; 154, 2023.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2180164

ABSTRACT

Neuromarketing literature has grown remarkably in recent years. Although the field has generated a diverse body of knowledge, we still find a dearth of studies classifying the existing literature into research themes and further presenting known and unknown aspects of Neuromarketing from a business and management viewpoint. To bridge this gap, the present study conducted a systematic literature review of Neuromarketing from 2011 to 2021, with a sample of 100 peer-reviewed articles. Based on rigorous review and thematic analysis of 41 relevant research articles, four research themes were identified - 1) Phenomenon, 2) Application, 3) Bright side, and 4) Dark side of Neuromarketing. Further, a theoretical framework of neuromarketing effect on consumer behaviour was presented. Future research thrust areas in theory, application, methodology, and evidence were identified.

17.
Biochimica Et Biophysica Acta-Molecular Basis of Disease ; 1869(2), 2023.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2176723

ABSTRACT

A significant number of SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals naturally overcome viral infection, suggesting the existence of a potent endogenous antiviral mechanism. As an innate defense mechanism, microRNA (miRNA) pathways in mammals have evolved to restrict viruses, besides regulating endogenous mRNAs. In this study, we systematically examined the complete repertoire of human miRNAs for potential binding sites on SARS-CoV-2 Wuhan-Hu-1, Beta, Delta, and Omicron. Human miRNA and viral genome interaction were analyzed using RNAhybrid 2.2 with stringent parameters to identify highly bonafide miRNA targets. Using publicly available data, we filtered for miRNAs expressed in lung epithelial cells/tissue and oral keratinocytes, concentrating on the miRNAs that target SARS-CoV-2 S protein mRNAs. Our results show a significant loss of human miRNA and SARS-CoV-2 interactions in Omicron (130 miRNAs) compared to Wuhan-Hu-1 (271 miRNAs), Beta (279 miR-NAs), and Delta (275 miRNAs). In particular, hsa-miR-3150b-3p and hsa-miR-4784 show binding affinity for S protein of Wuhan strain but not Beta, Delta, and Omicron. Loss of miRNA binding sites on N protein was also observed for Omicron. Through Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), we examined the experimentally validated and highly predicted functional role of these miRNAs. We found that hsa-miR-3150b-3p and hsa-miR-4784 have several experimentally validated or highly predicted target genes in the Toll-like receptor, IL-17, Th1, Th2, interferon, and coronavirus pathogenesis pathways. Focusing on the coronavirus pathogenesis pathway, we found that hsa-miR-3150b-3p and hsa-miR-4784 are highly predicted to target MAPK13. Exploring miRNAs to manipulate viral genome/gene expression can provide a promising strategy with successful outcomes by tar-geting specific VOCs.

18.
African Journal of Emergency Medicine ; 12(4):484-488, 2022.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2175765

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Hospital preparedness for a massive influx of victims relies, to a certain extent, on actions, programs, and systems that are created and executed ahead of time, but also on the knowledge, skills, and professional competences of the hospital's staff.Aim: This study aims to understand the factors influencing the preparedness of Tunisian University Hospital staff in facing a massive influx of victims.Methods: This is a multi-method qualitative descriptive study conducted in nine general University Hospitals in Tunisia. The first component was a phenomenological design via open-ended interviews. The second component was a qualitative observational non-participatory design via field observations.Results: 17 participants were recruited in an intentional, non-probabilistic way. Participants to this study discussed issues related to the material and financial resources of their hospitals as well as the psychological impact of managing an influx of victims. They also discussed their training, their involvement in the process, and the norm versus the circumstances in the field which led to the conclusion that: "For multiple reasons, the Tunisian University Hospitals are not ready to properly manage a massive influx of victims".Conclusions: This multi-method qualitative study discussed the factors that affected the preparedness of staff and readiness of University Hospitals included, which were mainly resources (material and financial), psychological burden, lack of training, lack of involvement in the process, and issues related to evidence-based practice. These findings support the idea that more research and more practical interventions needs to be performed to increase the preparedness level of Tunisian University Hospitals and their staff.

19.
Current Microbiology ; 80(1), 2023.
Article in English | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-2174070

ABSTRACT

Previous research indicated that hyphae of Aspergillus fumigatus (A. fumigatus) rather than conidia could successfully build a pulmonary aspergillosis model in immunocompetent mice. In this study, we compared the immune responses induced by hyphae and conidia to explore the possible mechanism of this striking phenomenon. Herein, a novel method was designed and adopted to quantify hyphal fragments. Murine macrophages RAW264.7 and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells were stimulated by A. fumigatus hyphae and conidia in vitro, respectively, and then immunological reactions were measured. Male C57BL/6 mice were challenged with conidia and hyphae through intratracheal inoculation. Dynamic conditions of mice were recorded, and RNA-seq measured corresponding immune responses. The results of the study confirmed that hyphae could induce more intensive inflammation than conidia in vitro and in vivo. However, macrophages revealed a higher production of ROS and M1 polarisation in response to conidia stimuli. Additionally, conidia could promote Th1 cell differentiation, while hyphae could increase the CD4/CD8 ratio. RNA-seq validated the fact that those multiple immunologically relevant pathways were more strongly activated by hyphae than conidia, which also promoted Th2 cell differentiation and suppressed Th1 signalling. Both hyphae and conidia could activate Th17 signalling. In general, conidia and hyphae induced distinctly different host immune responses, and the immune responses induced by conidia played a better protective effect. Therefore, the unique function of hyphae in the spread and infection of Aspergillus should be emphasised, and more research is required to clarify the underlying mechanisms for better understanding and management of aspergillosis.

20.
24th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction, HCII 2022 ; 1655 CCIS:483-490, 2022.
Article in English | Scopus | ID: covidwho-2173731

ABSTRACT

The number of scenarios where an interaction between humans and robots is part of the everyday life increased constantly during the last years. Therefore, it is important to focus on a good interaction between both parts, the humans and the robots, as well as the absence of negative emotions. Especially, emotions like fear and anxiety are of great interest. The presented study focuses on a first concept of measuring these emotions and the acceptance through a multidimensional approach. A simple handover task was chosen for the collaboration. Different motion speeds of the robot as well as distances between the robot and the human were considered. Moreover, the impact of two different interaction heights, at face level or at chest level, was examined. In addition to the subjective assessment of the participants, psychophysiological parameters (cardiovascular and electrodermal activity) were recorded during the human-robot interaction. The concept was first evaluated with a number of four participants, limited by governmental restrictions due to the current COVID-19 pandemic situation. The results proof the success of the chosen procedure. © 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG.

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