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1.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(21)2022 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2099525

ABSTRACT

Since December 2019, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been spreading worldwide, triggering one of the most challenging pandemics in the human population. In light of the reporting of this virus in domestic and wild animals from several parts of the world, a systematic surveillance study was conceptualized to detect SARS-CoV-2 among species of veterinary importance. Nasal and/or rectal samples of 413 animals (dogs n= 195, cattle n = 64, horses n = 42, goats n = 41, buffaloes n = 39, sheep n = 19, cats n = 6, camels n = 6, and a monkey n = 1) were collected from different places in the Gujarat state of India. RNA was extracted from the samples and subjected to RT-qPCR-based quantification of the target sequences in viral nucleoprotein (N), spike (S), and ORF1ab genes. A total of 95 (23.79%) animals were found positive, comprised of n = 67 (34.35%) dogs, n= 15 (23.43%) cattle, and n = 13 (33.33%) buffaloes. Whole SARS-CoV-2 genome sequencing was done from one sample (ID-A4N, from a dog), where 32 mutations, including 29 single-nucleotide variations (SNV) and 2 deletions, were detected. Among them, nine mutations were located in the receptor binding domain of the spike (S) protein. The consequent changes in the amino acid sequence revealed T19R, G142D, E156-, F157-, A222V, L452R, T478K, D614G, and P681R mutations in the S protein and D63G, R203M, and D377Y in the N protein. The lineage assigned to this SARS-CoV-2 sequence is B.1.617.2. Thus, the present study highlights the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection from human to animals and suggests being watchful for zoonosis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cattle , Animals , Humans , Dogs , Horses , Sheep , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Buffaloes , Pandemics , Mutation
2.
Schweiz Arch Tierheilkd ; 164(10): 733-739, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2081147

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Outbreaks of equine coronavirus (ECoV) infections have been described in different parts of the world including Europe. The aim of this report was to describe clinical signs, diagnostic work-up and outcome of the first documented outbreak of ECoV in Switzerland in order to raise the awareness for the disease and its various clinical presentations. The outbreak occurred on a farm with 26 horses. Of these, seven horses developed clinical disease ranging from mild signs such as fever and anorexia to severe signs of acute colitis. One horse died due to severe endotoxemia and circulatory shock secondary to severe acute necrotizing enteritis and colitis. Out of the 26 horses, five horses tested positive for ECoV, including two ponies without any clinical signs of infection. The low number of positive cases should nevertheless be interpreted with caution as testing was only performed on one occasion, over a month after the onset of clinical signs in the first suspected case. This report highlights the importance of diagnostic testing and early implementation of biosecurity measures on a farm with an ECoV outbreak. It should furthermore raise the awareness for unspecific and mild clinical signs such as fever and anorexia in affected animals that are potentially able to spread the disease.


INTRODUCTION: Des foyers d'infection à coronavirus équin (ECoV) ont été décrits dans différentes parties du monde, y compris en Europe. L'objectif de ce rapport est de décrire les signes cliniques, le diagnostic et les conséquences du premier foyer d'ECoV documenté en Suisse, afin de sensibiliser le public à cette maladie et à ses différents aspects cliniques. L'épidémie s'est produite dans une écurie comptant 26 chevaux. Parmi ceux-ci, sept chevaux ont développé une forme clinique allant de signes légers tels que la fièvre et l'anorexie à des signes sévères de colite aiguë. Un cheval est mort en raison d'une endotoxémie sévère et d>un choc circulatoire secondaire à une entérite nécrosante aiguë sévère et à une colite. Sur les 26 chevaux, cinq ont été testés positifs à l>ECoV, dont deux poneys sans aucun signe clinique d'infection. Le faible nombre de cas positifs doit néanmoins être interprété avec prudence car les tests n'ont été effectués qu'à une seule occasion, plus d'un mois après l'apparition des signes cliniques chez le premier cas suspect. Ce rapport souligne l'importance des tests de diagnostic et de la mise en œuvre rapide de mesures de biosécurité dans une exploitation où un foyer d'ECoV est détecté. Il devrait en outre sensibiliser à la présence de signes cliniques peu spécifiques et bénins tels que la fièvre et l'anorexie chez les animaux atteints qui sont potentiellement capables de propager la maladie.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus 1 , Colitis , Coronavirus Infections , Horse Diseases , Animals , Anorexia/veterinary , Colitis/epidemiology , Colitis/veterinary , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Disease Outbreaks/veterinary , Feces , Horse Diseases/diagnosis , Horses , Switzerland/epidemiology
3.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 69(5): e1787-e1799, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2053000

ABSTRACT

Increases in temperature and extreme weather events due to global warming can create an environment that is beneficial to mosquito populations, changing and possibly increasing the suitable geographical range for many vector-borne diseases. West Nile Virus (WNV) is a flavivirus, maintained in a mosquito-avian host cycle that is usually asymptomatic but can cause primarily flu-like symptoms in human and equid accidental hosts. In rare circumstances, serious disease and death are possible outcomes for both humans and horses. The main European vector of WNV is the Culex pipiens mosquito. This study examines the effect of environmental temperature on WNV establishment in Europe via Culex pipiens populations through use of a basic reproduction number ( R 0 ${R_0}$ ) model. A metric of thermal suitability derived from R 0 ${R_0}$ was developed by collating thermal responses of different Culex pipiens traits and combining them through use of a next-generation matrix. WNV establishment was determined to be possible between 14°C and 34.3°C, with the optimal temperature at 23.7°C. The suitability measure was plotted against monthly average temperatures in 2020 and the number of months with high suitability mapped across Europe. The average number of suitable months for each year from 2013 to 2019 was also calculated and validated with reported equine West Nile fever cases from 2013 to 2019. The widespread thermal suitability for WNV establishment highlights the importance of European surveillance for this disease and the need for increased research into mosquito and bird distribution.


Subject(s)
Culex , Culicidae , Horse Diseases , West Nile Fever , West Nile virus , Animals , Birds , Horses , Humans , Mosquito Vectors , Temperature , West Nile Fever/epidemiology , West Nile Fever/veterinary , West Nile virus/physiology
4.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 69(5): e1734-e1748, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2052999

ABSTRACT

Equine influenza virus (EIV) is a highly contagious pathogen of equids, and a well-known burden in global equine health. EIV H3N8 variants seasonally emerged and resulted in EIV outbreaks in the United States and worldwide. The present study evaluated the pattern of cross-regional EIV H3N8 spread and evolutionary characteristics at US and global scales using Bayesian phylogeography with balanced subsampling based on regional horse population size. A total of 297 haemagglutinin (HA) sequences of global EIV H3N8 were collected from 1963 to 2019 and subsampled to global subset (n = 67), raw US sequences (n = 100) and US subset (n = 44) datasets. Discrete trait phylogeography analysis was used to estimate the transmission history of EIV using four global and US genome datasets. The North American lineage was the major source of globally dominant EIV variants and spread to other global regions. The US EIV strains generally spread from the southern and midwestern regions to other regions. The EIV H3N8 accumulated approximately three nucleotide substitutions per year in the HA gene under heterogeneous local positive selection. Our findings will guide better decision making of target intervention strategies of EIV H3N8 infection and provide the better scheme of genomic surveillance in the United States and global equine health.


Subject(s)
Horse Diseases , Influenza A Virus, H3N8 Subtype , Influenza, Human , Orthomyxoviridae Infections , Animals , Bayes Theorem , Hemagglutinins , Horse Diseases/epidemiology , Horses , Humans , Influenza A Virus, H3N8 Subtype/genetics , Nucleotides , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/epidemiology , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/veterinary , Phylogeography
5.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 69(5): e1338-e1349, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2052987

ABSTRACT

Equine Piroplasmosis (EP) is a tick-borne disease caused by three apicomplexan protozoan parasites, Theileria equi (T. equi), Babesia caballi (B. caballi) and T. haneyi, which can cause similar clinical symptoms. There are five known 18S rRNA genotypes of T. equi group (including T. haneyi) and three of B. caballi. Real-time PCR methods for detecting EP based on 18S rRNA analysis have been developed, but these methods cannot detect all genotypes of EP in China, especially genotype A of T. equi. In this study, a duplex real-time PCR detection method was developed for the simultaneous detection and differentiation of T. equi and B. caballi. The primers and probes for this duplex real-time PCR assay were designed based on the conserved 18S rRNA gene sequences of all genotypes of T. equi and B. caballi including Chinese strain. Double-quenched probes were used in this method, which provide less background and more signal to decrease the number of false positives relative to single-quenched probes. The newly developed real-time PCR assays exhibited good specificity, sensitivity, repeatability and reproducibility. The real-time PCR assays were further validated by comparison with a nested PCR assay and a previous developed real-time PCR for EP and sequencing results in the analysis of 506 clinical samples collected from 2019 to 2020 in eleven provinces and regions of China. Based on clinical performance, the agreements between the duplex real-time PCR assay and the nPCR assay or the previous developed real-time PCR assay were 92.5% (T. equi) and 99.4% (B. caballi) or 87.4% (T. equi) and 97.2% (B. caballi). The detection results showed that the positivity rate of T. equi was 43.87% (222/506) (10 genotype A, 1 genotype B, 4 genotype C, 207 genotype E), while that of B. caballi was 5.10% (26/506) (26 genotype A), and the rate of T. equi and B. caballi co-infection was 2.40% (12/506). The established method could contribute to the accurate diagnosis, pathogenic surveillance and epidemiological investigation of T. equi and B. caballi infections in horses.


Subject(s)
Babesia , Babesiosis , Cattle Diseases , Horse Diseases , Theileria , Theileriasis , Animals , Babesia/genetics , Babesiosis/diagnosis , Babesiosis/epidemiology , Babesiosis/parasitology , Cattle , Horse Diseases/diagnosis , Horse Diseases/epidemiology , Horse Diseases/parasitology , Horses , RNA, Ribosomal, 18S/genetics , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/veterinary , Reproducibility of Results , Theileria/genetics , Theileriasis/diagnosis , Theileriasis/epidemiology , Theileriasis/parasitology
6.
Structure ; 30(10): 1367-1368, 2022 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2049939

ABSTRACT

In this issue of Structure, Lan and colleagues seek to identify regions on the ACE2 receptor and coronavirus spikes that are essential for the viral attachment. They achieve it through a detailed comparative analysis of the binding of coronaviruses NL63, SARS-CoV, and several SARS-CoV-2 variants with human and horse ACE2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronavirus NL63, Human , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Horses , Humans , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Mol Immunol ; 151: 231-241, 2022 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2049678

ABSTRACT

The antibody repertoire (Rep-seq) sequencing revolutionized the diversity of antigen B cell receptor studies, allowing deep and quantitative analysis to decipher the role of adaptive immunity in health and disease. Particularly, horse (Equus caballus) polyclonal antibodies have been produced and used since the century XIX to treat and prophylaxis diphtheria, tuberculosis, tetanus, pneumonia, and, more recently, COVID-19. However, our knowledge about the horse B cell receptors repertories is minimal. We present a deep horse antibody heavy chain repertoire (IGH) characterization of non-infected horses using NGS (Next generation sequencing). This study obtained a mean of 248,169 unique IgM clones and 66,141 unique IgG clones from four domestic adult horses. Rarefaction analysis showed sequence coverage was between 52 % and 82 % in IgM and IgG isotypes. We observed that besides horses antibody can use all functional IGHV genes, around 80 % of their antibodies use only three IGHV gene segments, and around 55 % use only one IGHJ gene segment. This limited VJ diversity seems to be compensated by the junctional diversity of these antibodies. We observed that the junctional diversity in horse antibodies is widespread, present in more than 90 % of horse antibodies. Besides this, the length of this region seems to be higher in horse antibodies than in other species. N1 and N2 nucleotides addition range from 0 to 111 nucleotides. In addition, around 45 % of the antibody clones have more than ten nucleotides in both the N1 and N2 junction regions. This diversity mechanism may be one of the most important in providing variability to the equine antibody repertoire. This study provides new insights regarding horse antibody composition, diversity generation, and particularities compared to other species, such as the frequency and length of N nucleotide addition. This study also points out the urgent need to better characterize TdT in horses and other species to better understand antibody repertoire characteristics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Animals , Antibody Diversity , Horses , Immunoglobulin G/genetics , Immunoglobulin M/genetics , Nucleotides , Receptors, Antigen, B-Cell/genetics
8.
PLoS One ; 17(9): e0274796, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2043208

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Passive immunotherapy has been evaluated as a therapeutic alternative for patients with COVID-19 disease. Equine polyclonal immunotherapy for COVID-19 (EPIC) showed adequate safety and potential efficacy in a clinical trial setting and obtained emergency use authorization in Argentina. We studied its utility in a real world setting with a larger population. METHODS: We conducted a retrospective cohort study at "Hospital de Campaña Escuela-Hogar" (HCEH) in Corrientes, Argentina, to assess safety and effectiveness of EPIC in hospitalized adults with severe COVID-19 pneumonia. Primary endpoints were 28-days all-cause mortality and safety. Mortality and improvement in modified WHO clinical scale at 14 and 21 days were secondary endpoints. Potential confounder adjustment was made by logistic regression weighted by the inverse of the probability of receiving the treatment (IPTW) and doubly robust approach. FINDINGS: Subsequent clinical records of 446 non-exposed (Controls) and 395 exposed (EPIC) patients admitted between November 2020 and April 2021 were analyzed. Median age was 58 years and 56.8% were males. Mortality at 28 days was 15.7% (EPIC) vs. 21.5% (Control). After IPTW adjustment the OR was 0.66 (95% CI: 0.46-0.96) P = 0.03. The effect was more evident in the subgroup who received two EPIC doses (complete treatment, n = 379), OR 0.58 (95% CI 0.39 to 0.85) P = 0.005. Overall and serious adverse events were not significantly different between groups. CONCLUSIONS: In this retrospective cohort study, EPIC showed adequate safety and effectiveness in the treatment of hospitalized patients with severe SARS-CoV-2 disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Immunization, Passive , Animals , COVID-19/therapy , Female , Horses , Humans , Immunization, Passive/adverse effects , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies
9.
Viruses ; 14(8)2022 07 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2024253

ABSTRACT

Acutely infectious new world alphaviruses such as Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis Virus (VEEV) pose important challenges to the human population due to a lack of effective therapeutic intervention strategies. Small interfering RNAs that can selectively target the viral genome (vsiRNAs) has been observed to offer survival advantages in several in vitro and in vivo models of acute virus infections, including alphaviruses such as Chikungunya virus and filoviruses such as Ebola virus. In this study, novel vsiRNAs that targeted conserved regions in the nonstructural and structural genes of the VEEV genome were designed and evaluated for antiviral activity in mammalian cells in the context of VEEV infection. The data demonstrate that vsiRNAs were able to effectively decrease the infectious virus titer at earlier time points post infection in the context of the attenuated TC-83 strain and the virulent Trinidad Donkey strain, while the inhibition was overcome at later time points. Depletion of Argonaute 2 protein (Ago2), the catalytic component of the RISC complex, negated the inhibitory effect of the vsiRNAs, underscoring the involvement of the siRNA pathway in the inhibition process. Depletion of the RNAi pathway proteins Dicer, MOV10, TRBP2 and Matrin 3 decreased viral load in infected cells, alluding to an impact of the RNAi pathway in the establishment of a productive infection. Additional studies focused on rational combinations of effective vsiRNAs and delivery strategies to confer better in vivo bioavailability and distribution to key target tissues such as the brain can provide effective solutions to treat encephalitic diseases resulting from alphavirus infections.


Subject(s)
Encephalitis Virus, Venezuelan Equine , RNA, Small Interfering , Animals , Cell Line , Encephalitis Virus, Venezuelan Equine/physiology , Horses , Humans , RNA Helicases , RNA, Small Interfering/pharmacology , Virus Replication
10.
Sensors (Basel) ; 22(16)2022 Aug 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2024040

ABSTRACT

As obesity is a serious problem in the human population, overloading of the horse's thoracolumbar region often affects sport and school horses. The advances in using infrared thermography (IRT) to assess the horse's back overload will shortly integrate the IRT-based rider-horse fit into everyday equine practice. This study aimed to evaluate the applicability of entropy measures to select the most informative measures and color components, and the accuracy of rider:horse bodyweight ratio detection. Twelve horses were ridden by each of the six riders assigned to the light, moderate, and heavy groups. Thermal images were taken pre- and post-exercise. For each thermal image, two-dimensional sample (SampEn), fuzzy (FuzzEn), permutation (PermEn), dispersion (DispEn), and distribution (DistEn) entropies were measured in the withers and the thoracic spine areas. Among 40 returned measures, 30 entropy measures were exercise-dependent, whereas 8 entropy measures were bodyweight ratio-dependent. Moreover, three entropy measures demonstrated similarities to entropy-related gray level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) texture features, confirming the higher irregularity and complexity of thermal image texture when horses worked under heavy riders. An application of DispEn to red color components enables identification of the light and heavy rider groups with higher accuracy than the previously used entropy-related GLCM texture features.


Subject(s)
Sports , Thermography , Animals , Back , Biomechanical Phenomena , Body Weight , Entropy , Horses , Humans
11.
Front Immunol ; 13: 948431, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2022730

ABSTRACT

Emergence of variants of concern (VOC) during the COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to the decreased efficacy of therapeutic monoclonal antibody treatments for severe cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection. In addition, the cost of creating these therapeutic treatments is high, making their implementation in low- to middle-income countries devastated by the pandemic very difficult. Here, we explored the use of polyclonal EpF(ab')2 antibodies generated through the immunization of horses with SARS-CoV-2 WA-1 RBD conjugated to HBsAg nanoparticles as a low-cost therapeutic treatment for severe cases of disease. We determined that the equine EpF(ab')2 bind RBD and neutralize ACE2 receptor binding by virus for all VOC strains tested except Omicron. Despite its relatively quick clearance from peripheral circulation, a 100µg dose of EpF(ab')2 was able to fully protect mice against severe disease phenotypes following intranasal SARS-CoV-2 challenge with Alpha and Beta variants. EpF(ab')2 administration increased survival while subsequently lowering disease scores and viral RNA burden in disease-relevant tissues. No significant improvement in survival outcomes or disease scores was observed in EpF(ab')2-treated mice challenged using the Delta variant at 10µg or 100µg doses. Overall, the data presented here provide a proof of concept for the use of EpF(ab')2 in the prevention of severe SARS-CoV-2 infections and underscore the need for either variant-specific treatments or variant-independent therapeutics for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , COVID-19/prevention & control , Horses , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Melphalan , Mice , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , gamma-Globulins
12.
Microb Pathog ; 170: 105693, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2015852

ABSTRACT

Nipah virus (NiV), an emerging zoonotic virus, has been associated with several outbreaks with high death rates, mainly in South and Southeast Asia. NiV is responsible for Encephalitis and systemic vasculitis, and occasionally respiratory diseases accompanied by it. Though fruit bats are the natural source of NiV, it can be transmitted in a zoonotic manner directly or via an intermediate host (e.g., a pig or horse). Several studies explore the viral mechanism of disease progressions and its overall pathogenesis. However, understanding the pathogenesis and disease dynamics is necessary to develop therapeutic options and vaccines. Thus, in this review, we provide a comprehensive update on the emerging understanding of the pathogenesis of NiV.


Subject(s)
Chiroptera , Henipavirus Infections , Nipah Virus , Animals , Asia, Southeastern , Disease Outbreaks , Henipavirus Infections/epidemiology , Horses , Swine
13.
Int J Hyg Environ Health ; 245: 114022, 2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2000444

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: In the Netherlands, during the first phase of the COVID-19 epidemic, the hotspot of COVID-19 overlapped with the country's main livestock area, while in subsequent phases this distinct spatial pattern disappeared. Previous studies show that living near livestock farms influence human respiratory health and immunological responses. This study aimed to explore whether proximity to livestock was associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection. METHODS: The study population was the population of the Netherlands excluding the very strongly urbanised areas and border areas, on January 1, 2019 (12, 628, 244 individuals). The cases are the individuals reported with a laboratory-confirmed positive SARS-CoV-2 test with onset before January 1, 2022 (2, 223, 692 individuals). For each individual, we calculated distance to nearest livestock farm (cattle, goat, sheep, pig, poultry, horse, rabbit, mink). The associations between residential (6-digit postal-code) distance to the nearest livestock farm and individuals' SARS-CoV-2 status was studied with multilevel logistic regression models. Models were adjusted for individuals' age categories, the social status of the postal code area, particulate matter (PM10)- and nitrogen dioxide (NO2)-concentrations. We analysed data for the entire period and population as well as separately for eight time periods (Jan-Mar, Apr-Jun, Jul-Sep and Oct-Dec in 2020 and 2021), four geographic areas of the Netherlands (north, east, west and south), and for five age categories (0-14, 15-24, 25-44, 45-64 and > 65 years). RESULTS: Over the period 2020-2021, individuals' SARS-CoV-2 status was associated with living closer to livestock farms. This association increased from an Odds Ratio (OR) of 1.01 (95% Confidence Interval [CI] 1.01-1.02) for patients living at a distance of 751-1000 m to a farm to an OR of 1.04 (95% CI 1.04-1.04), 1.07 (95% CI 1.06-1.07) and 1.11 (95% CI 1.10-1.12) for patients living in the more proximate 501-750 m, 251-500m and 0-250 m zones around farms, all relative to patients living further than 1000 m around farms. This association was observed in three out of four quarters of the year in both 2020 and 2021, and in all studied geographic areas and age groups. CONCLUSIONS: In this exploratory study with individual SARS-CoV-2 notification data and high-resolution spatial data associations were found between living near livestock farms and individuals' SARS-CoV-2 status in the Netherlands. Verification of the results in other countries is warranted, as well as investigations into possible underlying exposures and mechanisms.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Livestock , Aged , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cattle , Farms , Horses , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , Rabbits , SARS-CoV-2 , Sheep , Swine
14.
Public Health ; 211: 14-20, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1996504

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The impact of COVID-19 on gambling behavior and the gambling industry itself has been widely speculated. Prior studies have shown how boredom, social isolation, poor mental health, and financial hardships, all of which have been associated with COVID-19, can aggravate problem gambling behaviors in patients with gambling disorders while also luring newcomers. Few studies have used methods other than self-report to assess longitudinal behavioral changes in gambling behavior before versus during the pandemic. STUDY DESIGN: The present study addresses this gap by using an interrupted time series approach on data obtained from the Swedish Gambling Authority measuring taxation on gambling vendors' revenue between January 2019 and November 2021. METHODS: March, June, and October 2020 were chosen as interruption points as they correspond to the pandemic's commencement, the return of elite sports, and the second wave of cases in Sweden, respectively. We hypothesized that the pandemic would be associated with both temporary changes for select gambling types and long-term increases in online gambling. RESULTS: Results revealed the pandemic's onset was associated with transient effects at each point of interruption, as well as long-term upward trends in total gambling and commercial online gambling, excluding horse betting and the state-owned operator for online casinos and betting. CONCLUSIONS: The present study's findings, although consistent with the theory that gambling activity could increase during the pandemic, contradict previous studies that found no changes or a decrease from pre-COVID-19 levels. Findings indicate that the pandemic and Sweden's reaction to it were associated with increased use of some gambling products.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Gambling , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , Gambling/epidemiology , Gambling/psychology , Horses , Humans , Interrupted Time Series Analysis , Pandemics , Sweden/epidemiology , Taxes
15.
Lancet Infect Dis ; 22(8): 1210-1220, 2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1972391

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Western (WEEV), eastern (EEEV), and Venezuelan (VEEV) equine encephalitis viruses are mosquito-borne pathogens classified as potential biological warfare agents for which there are currently no approved human vaccines or therapies. We aimed to evaluate the safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of an investigational trivalent virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine, western, eastern, and Venezuelan equine encephalitis (WEVEE) VLP, composed of WEEV, EEEV, and VEEV VLPs. METHODS: The WEVEE VLP vaccine was evaluated in a phase 1, randomised, open-label, dose-escalation trial at the Hope Clinic of the Emory Vaccine Center at Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA. Eligible participants were healthy adults aged 18-50 years with no previous vaccination history with an investigational alphavirus vaccine. Participants were assigned to a dose group of 6 µg, 30 µg, or 60 µg vaccine product and were randomly assigned (1:1) to receive the WEVEE VLP vaccine with or without aluminium hydroxide suspension (alum) adjuvant by intramuscular injection at study day 0 and at week 8. The primary outcomes were the safety and tolerability of the vaccine (assessed in all participants who received at least one administration of study product) and the secondary outcome was immune response measured as neutralising titres by plaque reduction neutralisation test (PRNT) 4 weeks after the second vaccination. This trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT03879603. FINDINGS: Between April 2, 2019, and June 13, 2019, 30 trial participants were enrolled (mean age 32 years, range 21-48; 16 [53%] female participants and 14 [47%] male participants). Six groups of five participants each received 6 µg, 30 µg, or 60 µg vaccine doses with or without adjuvant, and all 30 participants completed study follow-up. Vaccinations were safe and well tolerated. The most frequently reported symptoms were mild injection-site pain and tenderness (22 [73%] of 30) and malaise (15 [50%] of 30). Dose-dependent differences in the frequency of pain and tenderness were found between the 6 µg, 30 µg, and 60 µg groups (p=0·0217). No significant differences were observed between dosing groups for any other reactogenicity symptom. Two adverse events (mild elevated blood pressure and moderate asymptomatic neutropenia) were assessed as possibly related to the study product in one trial participant (60 µg dose with alum); both resolved without clinical sequelae. 4 weeks after second vaccine administration, neutralising antibodies were induced in all study groups with the highest response seen against all three vaccine antigens in the 30 µg plus alum group (PRNT80 geometric mean titre for EEEV 60·8, 95% CI 29·9-124·0; for VEEV 111·5, 49·8-249·8; and for WEEV 187·9, 90·0-392·2). Finally, 4 weeks after second vaccine administration, for all doses, the majority of trial participants developed an immune response to all three vaccine components (24 [83%] of 29 for EEEV; 26 [90%] of 29 for VEEV; 27 [93%] of 29 for WEEV; and 22 [76%] of 29 for EEEV, VEEV, and WEEV combined). INTERPRETATION: The favourable safety profile and neutralising antibody responses, along with pressing public health need, support further evaluation of the WEVEE VLP vaccine in advanced-phase clinical trials. FUNDING: The Vaccine Research Center of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health funded the clinical trial. The US Department of Defense contributed funding for manufacturing of the study product.


Subject(s)
Alphavirus , Encephalitis Virus, Venezuelan Equine , Vaccines, Virus-Like Particle , Adjuvants, Immunologic , Adult , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Double-Blind Method , Female , Horses , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Male , Middle Aged , Pain , Young Adult
16.
Vet Med Sci ; 8(4): 1478-1488, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1971339

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The frequency of surgical site infection (SSI) following orthopaedic implant placement in horses has been reported but not compared with respect to specific antibiotic protocols administered. OBJECTIVES: To determine factors associated with SSI in horses undergoing proximal interphalangeal joint (PIPJ) arthrodesis including perioperative antibiotic protocols. METHODS: Records were evaluated (2010-2019), and horses undergoing PIPJ arthrodesis were identified. Patient signalment, supervising surgeon, reason for surgery, limb, implants placed, anaesthetic time, duration casting/coaptation postoperatively, antibiotic regimen and incidence/onset SSI were recorded. Bayesian and frequentist logistic regressions were used to estimate the contribution of covariates to infection occurrence. RESULTS: Fifty-four PIPJ arthrodeses were performed. SSI occurred in 2/54 (3.7%) on day 15,30. Arthrodesis was performed most commonly for osteoarthritis (33/54, 61.1%), fracture (11/54, 20.4%), and subluxation (5/54, 9.3%). Perioperative systemic antibiotics were administered 1-3 days (15/54, 27.8%) or > 3 days (39/54, 72.2%). Antibiotic protocols included cefazolin/gentamicin (20/54, 37%), cefazolin/gentamicin/doxycycline (14/54, 25.9%) and potassium penicillin/gentamicin (10/54, 18.5%). Regional limb perfusion was performed preoperatively 31/54 (57.4%) and postoperatively 7/54 (13%). Survival to dismissal was 98.1% (53/54 horses) with one horse euthanized due to support limb laminitis. No association was identified between antibiotic selection or duration (1-3 vs. > 3 days), pre-operative regional antibiotic perfusion, intraoperative antibiotic lavage or anaesthetic time (< or > 3 h) and SSI; however, modelling was complicated by quasi-complete or complete separation of the data. Bayesian analysis (but not frequentist analysis) indicated an association between post-operative regional antibiotic perfusion and SSI. Limitations include the retrospective nature of data collection and the low rate of infection overall. CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of SSI in this population was lower than that in previous reports of equine orthopaedic internal fixation. There was no difference in SSI rate in cases administered systemic antibiotics for 1-3 days or >3 days, or for those horses that did or did not receive preoperative regional antibiotic perfusion.


Subject(s)
Horse Diseases , Surgical Wound Infection , Animals , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Arthrodesis/methods , Arthrodesis/veterinary , Bayes Theorem , Cefazolin , Forelimb , Gentamicins , Horse Diseases/epidemiology , Horse Diseases/surgery , Horses , Retrospective Studies , Surgical Wound Infection/epidemiology , Surgical Wound Infection/veterinary
17.
Structure ; 30(10): 1432-1442.e4, 2022 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1967156

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV), SARS-CoV-2, and human coronavirus (hCoV)-NL63 utilize ACE2 as the functional receptor for cell entry, which leads to zoonotic infection. Horses (Equus caballus) attracted our attention because the spike protein receptor-binding domains (RBDs) of SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-2-related coronaviruses bind equine ACE2 (eACE2) with high affinity. Here we show that eACE2 binds the RBDs of these three coronaviruses and also SARS-CoV-2 variants but with lower affinities compared with human ACE2 (hACE2). Structural analysis and mutation assays indicated that eACE2-H41 accounts for the lower binding affinity of eACE2 to the RBDs of SARS-CoV-2 variants (Alpha, Beta, and Gamma), SARS-CoV, and hCoV-NL63. Pseudovirus infection assays showed that the SARS-CoV-2 Delta strain (B.1.617.2) displayed a significantly increased infection efficiency in eACE2-expressing HeLa cells. Our results reveal the molecular basis of eACE2 binding to the RBDs of SARS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, and hCoV-NL63, which provides insights into the potential animal transmission of these ACE2-dependent coronaviruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronavirus NL63, Human , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , HeLa Cells , Horses , Humans , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
18.
Front Immunol ; 13: 871874, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1963450

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the severe acute syndrome virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been around since November 2019. As of early June 2022, more than 527 million cases were diagnosed, with more than 6.0 million deaths due to this disease. Coronaviruses accumulate mutations and generate greater diversity through recombination when variants with different mutations infect the same host. Consequently, this virus is predisposed to constant and diverse mutations. The SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern/interest (VOCs/VOIs) such as Alpha (B.1.1.7), Beta (B.1.351), Gamma (B.1.1.28/P.1), Delta (B.1.617.2), and Omicron (B.1.1.529) have quickly spread across the world. These VOCs and VOIs have accumulated mutations within the spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) which interacts with the angiotensin-2 converting enzyme (ACE-2) receptor, increasing cell entry and infection. The RBD region is the main target for neutralizing antibodies; however, other notable mutations have been reported to enhance COVID-19 infectivity and lethality. Considering the urgent need for alternative therapies against this virus, an anti-SARS-CoV-2 equine immunoglobulin F(ab')2, called ECIG, was developed by the Butantan Institute using the whole gamma-irradiated SARS-CoV-2 virus. Surface plasmon resonance experiments revealed that ECIG binds to wild-type and mutated RBD, S1+S2 domains, and nucleocapsid proteins of known VOCs, including Alpha, Gamma, Beta, Delta, Delta Plus, and Omicron. Additionally, it was observed that ECIG attenuates the binding of RBD (wild-type, Beta, and Omicron) to human ACE-2, suggesting that it could prevent viral entry into the host cell. Furthermore, the ability to concomitantly bind to the wild-type and mutated nucleocapsid protein likely enhances its neutralizing activity of SARS-CoV-2. We postulate that ECIG benefits COVID-19 patients by reducing the infectivity of the original virus and existing variants and may be effective against future ones. Impacting the course of the disease, mainly in the more vulnerable, reduces infection time and limits the appearance of new variants by new recombination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Viral , Horses , Humans , Nucleocapsid Proteins , Pandemics , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
19.
Lancet Infect Dis ; 22(8): 1100-1102, 2022 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1946937
20.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 12099, 2022 07 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1937446

ABSTRACT

A number of strict lockdown measures were implemented in the areas most affected by COVID-19 in China, including Ji'nan city, from 24 January to 7 February 2020. Due to these forced restrictions, the pollution levels in cities across the country drastically decreased within just a few days. Since traffic pollution and industrial emissions are important factors affecting regional air quality, congestion has a significant impact on the environment. Therefore, using the aid of air quality data for six pollutants (PM10, PM2.5, SO2, NO2, CO and O3) from 11 monitoring stations (located in urban, suburban and urban-industrial regions) across Ji'nan, we employed the air quality index (AQI) to investigate the spatial pattern of air quality in the pre-COVID-19 (pre-COVID) and COVID-19-related lockdown (COVID lockdown) periods. The results showed that air quality significantly improved during the COVID lockdown period. Among the selected pollutants, compared to the corresponding pre-COVID levels, the greatest reduction was observed for the concentration of NO2 (54.02%), while the smallest reduction was observed for the concentration of SO2 (27.92%). The PM2.5 (38.73%), PM10 (44.92%) and CO (30.60%) levels also decreased during the COVID lockdown period; only the O3 concentration increased (37.42%) during this period. Overall, air quality improved by approximate improvements of 37.33% during the COVID lockdown period. Approximately 35.48%, 37.01% and 43.43% in the AQI were observed in urban, suburban and urban-industrial regions, respectively. Therefore, the AQI exhibited remarkable regional differences in Ji'nan. This study demonstrates the contributions of the transportation sector and local emissions to improving air quality in typical urban areas, and these research results can provide guidance for the further monitoring of air pollution in northern Chinese cities.


Subject(s)
Air Pollutants , Air Pollution , COVID-19 , Environmental Pollutants , Air Pollutants/analysis , Air Pollution/analysis , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , China/epidemiology , Cities/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Environmental Monitoring , Horses , Nitrogen Dioxide/analysis , Particulate Matter/analysis , SARS-CoV-2
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