Publications by authors named "Barbara A Rath"

18 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Global burden of acute lower respiratory infection associated with human metapneumovirus in children under 5 years in 2018: a systematic review and modelling study.

Lancet Glob Health 2021 01 26;9(1):e33-e43. Epub 2020 Nov 26.

Centre for Global Health, Usher Institute, Edinburgh Medical School, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK. Electronic address:

Background: Human metapneumovirus is a common virus associated with acute lower respiratory infections (ALRIs) in children. No global burden estimates are available for ALRIs associated with human metapneumovirus in children, and no licensed vaccines or drugs exist for human metapneumovirus infections. We aimed to estimate the age-stratified human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI global incidence, hospital admissions, and mortality burden in children younger than 5 years.

Methods: We estimated the global burden of human metapneumovirus-associated ALRIs in children younger than 5 years from a systematic review of 119 studies published between Jan 1, 2001, and Dec 31, 2019, and a further 40 high quality unpublished studies. We assessed risk of bias using a modified Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. We estimated incidence, hospital admission rates, and in-hospital case-fatality ratios (hCFRs) of human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI using a generalised linear mixed model. We applied incidence and hospital admission rates of human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI to population estimates to yield the morbidity burden estimates by age bands and World Bank income levels. We also estimated human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI in-hospital deaths and overall human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI deaths (both in-hospital and non-hospital deaths). Additionally, we estimated human metapneumovirus-attributable ALRI cases, hospital admissions, and deaths by combining human metapneumovirus-associated burden estimates and attributable fractions of human metapneumovirus in laboratory-confirmed human metapneumovirus cases and deaths.

Findings: In 2018, among children younger than 5 years globally, there were an estimated 14·2 million human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI cases (uncertainty range [UR] 10·2 million to 20·1 million), 643 000 human metapneumovirus-associated hospital admissions (UR 425 000 to 977 000), 7700 human metapneumovirus-associated in-hospital deaths (2600 to 48 800), and 16 100 overall (hospital and community) human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI deaths (5700 to 88 000). An estimated 11·1 million ALRI cases (UR 8·0 million to 15·7 million), 502 000 ALRI hospital admissions (UR 332 000 to 762 000), and 11 300 ALRI deaths (4000 to 61 600) could be causally attributed to human metapneumovirus in 2018. Around 58% of the hospital admissions were in infants under 12 months, and 64% of in-hospital deaths occurred in infants younger than 6 months, of which 79% occurred in low-income and lower-middle-income countries.

Interpretation: Infants younger than 1 year have disproportionately high risks of severe human metapneumovirus infections across all World Bank income regions and all child mortality settings, similar to respiratory syncytial virus and influenza virus. Infants younger than 6 months in low-income and lower-middle-income countries are at greater risk of death from human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI than older children and those in upper-middle-income and high-income countries. Our mortality estimates demonstrate the importance of intervention strategies for infants across all settings, and warrant continued efforts to improve the outcome of human metapneumovirus-associated ALRI among young infants in low-income and lower-middle-income countries.

Funding: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(20)30393-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7783516PMC
January 2021

Current and Future Point-of-Care Tests for Emerging and New Respiratory Viruses and Future Perspectives.

Front Cell Infect Microbiol 2020 29;10:181. Epub 2020 Apr 29.

Institute of Laboratory Medicine, Universities of Giessen and Marburg Lung Center (UGMLC), Philipps University Marburg, German Center for Lung Research (DZL) Marburg, Marburg, Germany.

The availability of pathogen-specific treatment options for respiratory tract infections (RTIs) increased the need for rapid diagnostic tests. Besides, retrospective studies, improved lab-based detection methods and the intensified search for new viruses since the beginning of the twenty-first century led to the discovery of several novel respiratory viruses. Among them are human bocavirus (HBoV), human coronaviruses (HCoV-HKU1, -NL63), human metapneumovirus (HMPV), rhinovirus type C (RV-C), and human polyomaviruses (KIPyV, WUPyV). Additionally, new viruses like SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV), MERS coronavirus (MERS-CoV), novel strains of influenza virus A and B, and (most recently) SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) have emerged. Although clinical presentation may be similar among different viruses, associated symptoms may range from a mild cold to a severe respiratory illness, and thus require a fast and reliable diagnosis. The increasing number of commercially available rapid point-of-care tests (POCTs) for respiratory viruses illustrates both the need for this kind of tests but also the problem, i.e., that the majority of such assays has significant limitations. In this review, we summarize recently published characteristics of POCTs and discuss their implications for the treatment of RTIs. The second key aspect of this work is a description of new and innovative diagnostic techniques, ranging from biosensors to novel portable and current lab-based nucleic acid amplification methods with the potential future use in point-of-care settings. While prototypes for some methods already exist, other ideas are still experimental, but all of them give an outlook of what can be expected as the next generation of POCTs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fcimb.2020.00181DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7202255PMC
May 2020

Cost of Respiratory Syncytial Virus-Associated Acute Lower Respiratory Infection Management in Young Children at the Regional and Global Level: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

J Infect Dis 2020 10;222(Suppl 7):S680-S687

Centre for Global Health, Usher Institute, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.

Background: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a major cause of acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) in young children aged <5 years.

Methods: We aimed to identify the global inpatient and outpatient cost of management of RSV-ALRI in young children to assist health policy makers in making decisions related to resource allocation for interventions to reduce severe morbidity and mortality from RSV in this age group. We searched 3 electronic databases including Global Health, Medline, and EMBASE for studies reporting cost data on RSV management in children under 60 months from 2000 to 2017. Unpublished data on the management cost of RSV episodes were collected through collaboration with an international working group (RSV GEN) and claim databases.

Results: We identified 41 studies reporting data from year 1987 to 2017, mainly from Europe, North America, and Australia, covering the management of a total of 365 828 RSV disease episodes. The average cost per episode was €3452 (95% confidence interval [CI], 3265-3639) and €299 (95% CI, 295-303) for inpatient and outpatient management without follow-up, and it increased to €8591(95% CI, 8489-8692) and €2191 (95% CI, 2190-2192), respectively, with follow-up to 2 years after the initial event.

Conclusions: Known risk factors (early and late preterm birth, congenital heart disease, chronic lung disease, intensive care unit admission, and ventilator use) were associated with €4160 (95% CI, 3237-5082) increased cost of hospitalization. The global cost of inpatient and outpatient RSV ALRI management in young children in 2017 was estimated to be approximately €4.82 billion (95% CI, 3.47-7.93), 65% of these in developing countries and 55% of global costs accounted for by hospitalization. We have demonstrated that RSV imposed a substantial economic burden on health systems, governments, and the society.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/infdis/jiz683DOI Listing
October 2020

Global burden of respiratory infections associated with seasonal influenza in children under 5 years in 2018: a systematic review and modelling study.

Lancet Glob Health 2020 04 20;8(4):e497-e510. Epub 2020 Feb 20.

Centre for Global Health, Usher Institute, Edinburgh Medical School, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK. Electronic address:

Background: Seasonal influenza virus is a common cause of acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) in young children. In 2008, we estimated that 20 million influenza-virus-associated ALRI and 1 million influenza-virus-associated severe ALRI occurred in children under 5 years globally. Despite this substantial burden, only a few low-income and middle-income countries have adopted routine influenza vaccination policies for children and, where present, these have achieved only low or unknown levels of vaccine uptake. Moreover, the influenza burden might have changed due to the emergence and circulation of influenza A/H1N1pdm09. We aimed to incorporate new data to update estimates of the global number of cases, hospital admissions, and mortality from influenza-virus-associated respiratory infections in children under 5 years in 2018.

Methods: We estimated the regional and global burden of influenza-associated respiratory infections in children under 5 years from a systematic review of 100 studies published between Jan 1, 1995, and Dec 31, 2018, and a further 57 high-quality unpublished studies. We adapted the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale to assess the risk of bias. We estimated incidence and hospitalisation rates of influenza-virus-associated respiratory infections by severity, case ascertainment, region, and age. We estimated in-hospital deaths from influenza virus ALRI by combining hospital admissions and in-hospital case-fatality ratios of influenza virus ALRI. We estimated the upper bound of influenza virus-associated ALRI deaths based on the number of in-hospital deaths, US paediatric influenza-associated death data, and population-based childhood all-cause pneumonia mortality data in six sites in low-income and lower-middle-income countries.

Findings: In 2018, among children under 5 years globally, there were an estimated 109·5 million influenza virus episodes (uncertainty range [UR] 63·1-190·6), 10·1 million influenza-virus-associated ALRI cases (6·8-15·1); 870 000 influenza-virus-associated ALRI hospital admissions (543 000-1 415 000), 15 300 in-hospital deaths (5800-43 800), and up to 34 800 (13 200-97 200) overall influenza-virus-associated ALRI deaths. Influenza virus accounted for 7% of ALRI cases, 5% of ALRI hospital admissions, and 4% of ALRI deaths in children under 5 years. About 23% of the hospital admissions and 36% of the in-hospital deaths were in infants under 6 months. About 82% of the in-hospital deaths occurred in low-income and lower-middle-income countries.

Interpretation: A large proportion of the influenza-associated burden occurs among young infants and in low-income and lower middle-income countries. Our findings provide new and important evidence for maternal and paediatric influenza immunisation, and should inform future immunisation policy particularly in low-income and middle-income countries.

Funding: WHO; Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(19)30545-5DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7083228PMC
April 2020

Neuraminidase Inhibitors and Hospital Length of Stay: A Meta-analysis of Individual Participant Data to Determine Treatment Effectiveness Among Patients Hospitalized With Nonfatal 2009 Pandemic Influenza A(H1N1) Virus Infection.

J Infect Dis 2020 01;221(3):356-366

Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham.

Background: The effect of neuraminidase inhibitor (NAI) treatment on length of stay (LoS) in patients hospitalized with influenza is unclear.

Methods: We conducted a one-stage individual participant data (IPD) meta-analysis exploring the association between NAI treatment and LoS in patients hospitalized with 2009 influenza A(H1N1) virus (A[H1N1]pdm09) infection. Using mixed-effects negative binomial regression and adjusting for the propensity to receive NAI, antibiotic, and corticosteroid treatment, we calculated incidence rate ratios (IRRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Patients with a LoS of <1 day and those who died while hospitalized were excluded.

Results: We analyzed data on 18 309 patients from 70 clinical centers. After adjustment, NAI treatment initiated at hospitalization was associated with a 19% reduction in the LoS among patients with clinically suspected or laboratory-confirmed influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 infection (IRR, 0.81; 95% CI, .78-.85), compared with later or no initiation of NAI treatment. Similar statistically significant associations were seen in all clinical subgroups. NAI treatment (at any time), compared with no NAI treatment, and NAI treatment initiated <2 days after symptom onset, compared with later or no initiation of NAI treatment, showed mixed patterns of association with the LoS.

Conclusions: When patients hospitalized with influenza are treated with NAIs, treatment initiated on admission, regardless of time since symptom onset, is associated with a reduced LoS, compared with later or no initiation of treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/infdis/jiz152DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7313925PMC
January 2020

Global respiratory syncytial virus-associated mortality in young children (RSV GOLD): a retrospective case series.

Lancet Glob Health 2017 10;5(10):e984-e991

Department of Paediatric Infectious Diseases and Immunology, Wilhelmina Children's Hospital, University Medical Centre Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands; ReSViNET Respiratory Syncytial Virus Network, Utrecht, Netherlands. Electronic address:

Background: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection is an important cause of pneumonia mortality in young children. However, clinical data for fatal RSV infection are scarce. We aimed to identify clinical and socioeconomic characteristics of children aged younger than 5 years with RSV-related mortality using individual patient data.

Methods: In this retrospective case series, we developed an online questionnaire to obtain individual patient data for clinical and socioeconomic characteristics of children aged younger than 5 years who died with community-acquired RSV infection between Jan 1, 1995, and Oct 31, 2015, through leading research groups for child pneumonia identified through a comprehensive literature search and existing research networks. For the literature search, we searched PubMed for articles published up to Feb 3, 2015, using the key terms "RSV", "respiratory syncytial virus", or "respiratory syncytial viral" combined with "mortality", "fatality", "death", "died", "deaths", or "CFR" for articles published in English. We invited researchers and clinicians identified to participate between Nov 1, 2014, and Oct 31, 2015. We calculated descriptive statistics for all variables.

Findings: We studied 358 children with RSV-related in-hospital death from 23 countries across the world, with data contributed from 31 research groups. 117 (33%) children were from low-income or lower middle-income countries, 77 (22%) were from upper middle-income countries, and 164 (46%) were from high-income countries. 190 (53%) were male. Data for comorbidities were missing for some children in low-income and middle-income countries. Available data showed that comorbidities were present in at least 33 (28%) children from low-income or lower middle-income countries, 36 (47%) from upper middle-income countries, and 114 (70%) from high-income countries. Median age for RSV-related deaths was 5·0 months (IQR 2·3-11·0) in low-income or lower middle-income countries, 4·0 years (2·0-10·0) in upper middle-income countries, and 7·0 years (3·6-16·8) in high-income countries.

Interpretation: This study is the first large case series of children who died with community-acquired RSV infection. A substantial proportion of children with RSV-related death had comorbidities. Our results show that perinatal immunisation strategies for children aged younger than 6 months could have a substantial impact on RSV-related child mortality in low-income and middle-income countries.

Funding: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(17)30344-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5599304PMC
October 2017

Global, regional, and national disease burden estimates of acute lower respiratory infections due to respiratory syncytial virus in young children in 2015: a systematic review and modelling study.

Authors:
Ting Shi David A McAllister Katherine L O'Brien Eric A F Simoes Shabir A Madhi Bradford D Gessner Fernando P Polack Evelyn Balsells Sozinho Acacio Claudia Aguayo Issifou Alassani Asad Ali Martin Antonio Shally Awasthi Juliet O Awori Eduardo Azziz-Baumgartner Henry C Baggett Vicky L Baillie Angel Balmaseda Alfredo Barahona Sudha Basnet Quique Bassat Wilma Basualdo Godfrey Bigogo Louis Bont Robert F Breiman W Abdullah Brooks Shobha Broor Nigel Bruce Dana Bruden Philippe Buchy Stuart Campbell Phyllis Carosone-Link Mandeep Chadha James Chipeta Monidarin Chou Wilfrido Clara Cheryl Cohen Elizabeth de Cuellar Duc-Anh Dang Budragchaagiin Dash-Yandag Maria Deloria-Knoll Mukesh Dherani Tekchheng Eap Bernard E Ebruke Marcela Echavarria Carla Cecília de Freitas Lázaro Emediato Rodrigo A Fasce Daniel R Feikin Luzhao Feng Angela Gentile Aubree Gordon Doli Goswami Sophie Goyet Michelle Groome Natasha Halasa Siddhivinayak Hirve Nusrat Homaira Stephen R C Howie Jorge Jara Imane Jroundi Cissy B Kartasasmita Najwa Khuri-Bulos Karen L Kotloff Anand Krishnan Romina Libster Olga Lopez Marilla G Lucero Florencia Lucion Socorro P Lupisan Debora N Marcone John P McCracken Mario Mejia Jennifer C Moisi Joel M Montgomery David P Moore Cinta Moraleda Jocelyn Moyes Patrick Munywoki Kuswandewi Mutyara Mark P Nicol D James Nokes Pagbajabyn Nymadawa Maria Tereza da Costa Oliveira Histoshi Oshitani Nitin Pandey Gláucia Paranhos-Baccalà Lia N Phillips Valentina Sanchez Picot Mustafizur Rahman Mala Rakoto-Andrianarivelo Zeba A Rasmussen Barbara A Rath Annick Robinson Candice Romero Graciela Russomando Vahid Salimi Pongpun Sawatwong Nienke Scheltema Brunhilde Schweiger J Anthony G Scott Phil Seidenberg Kunling Shen Rosalyn Singleton Viviana Sotomayor Tor A Strand Agustinus Sutanto Mariam Sylla Milagritos D Tapia Somsak Thamthitiwat Elizabeth D Thomas Rafal Tokarz Claudia Turner Marietjie Venter Sunthareeya Waicharoen Jianwei Wang Wanitda Watthanaworawit Lay-Myint Yoshida Hongjie Yu Heather J Zar Harry Campbell Harish Nair

Lancet 2017 Sep 7;390(10098):946-958. Epub 2017 Jul 7.

Centre for Global Health Research, Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, UK; Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi, India. Electronic address:

Background: We have previously estimated that respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) was associated with 22% of all episodes of (severe) acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) resulting in 55 000 to 199 000 deaths in children younger than 5 years in 2005. In the past 5 years, major research activity on RSV has yielded substantial new data from developing countries. With a considerably expanded dataset from a large international collaboration, we aimed to estimate the global incidence, hospital admission rate, and mortality from RSV-ALRI episodes in young children in 2015.

Methods: We estimated the incidence and hospital admission rate of RSV-associated ALRI (RSV-ALRI) in children younger than 5 years stratified by age and World Bank income regions from a systematic review of studies published between Jan 1, 1995, and Dec 31, 2016, and unpublished data from 76 high quality population-based studies. We estimated the RSV-ALRI incidence for 132 developing countries using a risk factor-based model and 2015 population estimates. We estimated the in-hospital RSV-ALRI mortality by combining in-hospital case fatality ratios with hospital admission estimates from hospital-based (published and unpublished) studies. We also estimated overall RSV-ALRI mortality by identifying studies reporting monthly data for ALRI mortality in the community and RSV activity.

Findings: We estimated that globally in 2015, 33·1 million (uncertainty range [UR] 21·6-50·3) episodes of RSV-ALRI, resulted in about 3·2 million (2·7-3·8) hospital admissions, and 59 600 (48 000-74 500) in-hospital deaths in children younger than 5 years. In children younger than 6 months, 1·4 million (UR 1·2-1·7) hospital admissions, and 27 300 (UR 20 700-36 200) in-hospital deaths were due to RSV-ALRI. We also estimated that the overall RSV-ALRI mortality could be as high as 118 200 (UR 94 600-149 400). Incidence and mortality varied substantially from year to year in any given population.

Interpretation: Globally, RSV is a common cause of childhood ALRI and a major cause of hospital admissions in young children, resulting in a substantial burden on health-care services. About 45% of hospital admissions and in-hospital deaths due to RSV-ALRI occur in children younger than 6 months. An effective maternal RSV vaccine or monoclonal antibody could have a substantial effect on disease burden in this age group.

Funding: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(17)30938-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5592248PMC
September 2017

Impact of Outpatient Neuraminidase Inhibitor Treatment in Patients Infected With Influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 at High Risk of Hospitalization: An Individual Participant Data Metaanalysis.

Clin Infect Dis 2017 May;64(10):1328-1334

Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, and.

Background: While evidence exists to support the effectiveness of neuraminidase inhibitors (NAIs) in reducing mortality when given to hospitalized patients with A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection, the impact of outpatient treatment on hospitalization has not been clearly established. We investigated the impact of outpatient NAI treatment on subsequent hospitalization in patients with A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection.

Methods: We assembled general community and outpatient data from 9 clinical centers in different countries collected between January 2009 and December 2010. We standardized data from each study center to create a pooled dataset and then used mixed-effects logistic regression modeling to determine the effect of NAI treatment on hospitalization. We adjusted for NAI treatment propensity and preadmission antibiotic use, including "study center" as a random intercept to account for differences in baseline hospitalization rate between centers.

Results: We included 3376 patients with influenza A(H1N1)pdm09, of whom 3085 (91.4%) had laboratory-confirmed infection. Eight hundred seventy-three patients (25.8%) received outpatient or community-based NAI treatment, 928 of 2395 (38.8%) with available data had dyspnea or respiratory distress, and hospitalizations occurred in 1705 (50.5%). After adjustment for preadmission antibiotics and NAI treatment propensity, preadmission NAI treatment was associated with decreased odds of hospital admission compared to no NAI treatment (adjusted odds ratio, 0.24; 95% confidence interval, 0.20-0.30).

Conclusions: In a population with confirmed or suspected A(H1N1)pdm09 and at high risk of hospitalization, outpatient or community-based NAI treatment significantly reduced the likelihood of requiring hospital admission. These data suggest that community patients with severe influenza should receive NAI treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cid/cix127DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5411393PMC
May 2017

Risk factors for respiratory syncytial virus associated with acute lower respiratory infection in children under five years: Systematic review and meta-analysis.

J Glob Health 2015 Dec;5(2):020416

Centre for Global Health Research, Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom ; Centre for Medical Informatics, Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom ; Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi, India ; Joint last authorship.

Background: Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most common pathogen identified in young children with acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI) as well as an important cause of hospital admission. The high incidence of RSV infection and its potential severe outcome make it important to identify and prioritise children who are at higher risk of developing RSV-associated ALRI. We aimed to identify risk factors for RSV-associated ALRI in young children.

Methods: We carried out a systematic literature review across 4 databases and obtained unpublished studies from RSV Global Epidemiology Network (RSV GEN) collaborators. Quality of all eligible studies was assessed according to modified GRADE criteria. We conducted meta-analyses to estimate odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals (CI) for individual risk factors.

Results: We identified 20 studies (3 were unpublished data) with "good quality" that investigated 18 risk factors for RSV-associated ALRI in children younger than five years old. Among them, 8 risk factors were significantly associated with RSV-associated ALRI. The meta-estimates of their odds ratio (ORs) with corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CI) are prematurity 1.96 (95% CI 1.44-2.67), low birth weight 1.91 (95% CI 1.45-2.53), being male 1.23 (95% CI 1.13-1.33), having siblings 1.60 (95% CI 1.32-1.95), maternal smoking 1.36 (95% CI 1.24-1.50), history of atopy 1.47 (95% CI 1.16-1.87), no breastfeeding 2.24 (95% CI 1.56-3.20) and crowding 1.94 (95% CI 1.29-2.93). Although there were insufficient studies available to generate a meta-estimate for HIV, all articles (irrespective of quality scores) reported significant associations between HIV and RSV-associated ALRI.

Conclusions: This study presents a comprehensive report of the strength of association between various socio-demographic risk factors and RSV-associated ALRI in young children. Some of these amenable risk factors are similar to those that have been identified for (all cause) ALRI and thus, in addition to the future impact of novel RSV vaccines, national action against ALRI risk factors as part of national control programmes can be expected to reduce burden of disease from RSV. Further research which identifies, accesses and analyses additional unpublished RSV data sets could further improve the precision of these estimates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.7189/jogh.05.020416DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4676580PMC
December 2015

Impact of neuraminidase inhibitors on influenza A(H1N1)pdm09-related pneumonia: an individual participant data meta-analysis.

Influenza Other Respir Viruses 2016 May 1;10(3):192-204. Epub 2016 Feb 1.

Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK.

Background: The impact of neuraminidase inhibitors (NAIs) on influenza-related pneumonia (IRP) is not established. Our objective was to investigate the association between NAI treatment and IRP incidence and outcomes in patients hospitalised with A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection.

Methods: A worldwide meta-analysis of individual participant data from 20 634 hospitalised patients with laboratory-confirmed A(H1N1)pdm09 (n = 20 021) or clinically diagnosed (n = 613) 'pandemic influenza'. The primary outcome was radiologically confirmed IRP. Odds ratios (OR) were estimated using generalised linear mixed modelling, adjusting for NAI treatment propensity, antibiotics and corticosteroids.

Results: Of 20 634 included participants, 5978 (29·0%) had IRP; conversely, 3349 (16·2%) had confirmed the absence of radiographic pneumonia (the comparator). Early NAI treatment (within 2 days of symptom onset) versus no NAI was not significantly associated with IRP [adj. OR 0·83 (95% CI 0·64-1·06; P = 0·136)]. Among the 5978 patients with IRP, early NAI treatment versus none did not impact on mortality [adj. OR = 0·72 (0·44-1·17; P = 0·180)] or likelihood of requiring ventilatory support [adj. OR = 1·17 (0·71-1·92; P = 0·537)], but early treatment versus later significantly reduced mortality [adj. OR = 0·70 (0·55-0·88; P = 0·003)] and likelihood of requiring ventilatory support [adj. OR = 0·68 (0·54-0·85; P = 0·001)].

Conclusions: Early NAI treatment of patients hospitalised with A(H1N1)pdm09 virus infection versus no treatment did not reduce the likelihood of IRP. However, in patients who developed IRP, early NAI treatment versus later reduced the likelihood of mortality and needing ventilatory support.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/irv.12363DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4814862PMC
May 2016

Safety, virology and pharmacokinetics of oseltamivir in infants with laboratory-confirmed influenza: a Phase I/II, prospective, open-label, multicentre clinical trial.

Antivir Ther 2015 27;20(8):815-25. Epub 2015 May 27.

Department of Paediatrics, Charité University Medical Center, Berlin, Germany.

Background: The influenza antiviral oseltamivir is not licensed for infants aged <1 year in most countries outside the United States. More information is needed on oseltamivir safety at different dosing levels in this vulnerable age group.

Methods: In this prospective, observational, non-randomized study, infants aged <1 year with laboratory-confirmed influenza were treated with oral oseltamivir for 5 days. Cohorts 1, 2 and 3 (aged 91-364, 31-90 and 0-30 days, respectively), received twice-daily dosages of 3, 2.5 and 2 mg/kg, respectively. Assessments included pharmacokinetics, on-treatment adverse events, resistance testing and viral shedding.

Results: A total of 65 patients were enrolled: 40, 20 and 5 in cohorts 1, 2 and 3, respectively. Systemic exposure to oseltamivir carboxylate (active metabolite) reached therapeutic levels in all patients, with an adequate safety margin. On-treatment adverse events (n=48) were reported by 32 patients (49%). At least one adverse event was reported by 43%, 65% and 40% of infants in cohorts 1, 2 and 3, respectively; most frequently vomiting and diarrhoea. Eight serious adverse events were reported, all of which were considered unrelated to treatment by the investigator. No deaths occurred and no patient had treatment withdrawn. Oseltamivir resistance mutations were detected in eight patients.

Conclusions: Oseltamivir dosages of 2-3 mg/kg were well tolerated in infants aged <1 year and achieved therapeutic exposure levels. The current study supports the adoption of a universal dosing recommendation for infants. Clinicaltrials.gov unique identifier NCT00988325.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3851/IMP2967DOI Listing
November 2016

A prospective observational study of oseltamivir safety and tolerability in infants and young children ≤24 months.

Pharmacoepidemiol Drug Saf 2015 Mar 21;24(3):286-96. Epub 2014 Oct 21.

Charité University Medical Center, Berlin, Germany.

Purpose: Infants and young children are at elevated risk of influenza-associated complications, but information on the safety of antiviral therapies is limited in this age group.

Methods: In this prospective open-label observational safety study, children aged ≤24 months with a clinical diagnosis of influenza in routine practice received either no antiviral treatment ('unexposed' group) or oseltamivir treatment or prophylaxis ('exposed' group), according to the physician's judgment. Patients were followed up for 30 days after the baseline visit.

Results: Adverse events (AEs) were analysed in 1065 patients; they were reported in 390/711 (54.9%) in the unexposed group, 167/340 (49.1%) patients in the exposed group, and 6/14 prophylaxis patients. Cough and rhinitis were the most common events, reported more often in unexposed children (22.9 and 20.3% respectively) than in exposed children (13.2 and 10.0%; p < 0.001); pyrexia, diarrhoea and vomiting were less common, occurring at similar rates in exposed and unexposed patients. Nasal congestion (3.5%), bronchitis (5.6%) and upper respiratory tract infection (1.5%) were reported more frequently in exposed patients than in unexposed patients (0.7, 2.7 and 0.1% respectively; p < 0.05). In the exposed group, 11.2% of patients (n = 38) experienced 41 AEs considered at least possibly related to oseltamivir, none being assessed as serious. Overall, there were 79 serious AEs in 59 patients. Eleven discontinued treatment because of an AE.

Conclusions: Oseltamivir has a good tolerability profile in infants and children aged ≤24 months. These findings contributed to the recent FDA approval of oseltamivir for treating infants aged 2-51 weeks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pds.3707DOI Listing
March 2015

Effectiveness of neuraminidase inhibitors in reducing mortality in patients admitted to hospital with influenza A H1N1pdm09 virus infection: a meta-analysis of individual participant data.

Lancet Respir Med 2014 May 19;2(5):395-404. Epub 2014 Mar 19.

Division of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK. Electronic address:

Background: Neuraminidase inhibitors were widely used during the 2009-10 influenza A H1N1 pandemic, but evidence for their effectiveness in reducing mortality is uncertain. We did a meta-analysis of individual participant data to investigate the association between use of neuraminidase inhibitors and mortality in patients admitted to hospital with pandemic influenza A H1N1pdm09 virus infection.

Methods: We assembled data for patients (all ages) admitted to hospital worldwide with laboratory confirmed or clinically diagnosed pandemic influenza A H1N1pdm09 virus infection. We identified potential data contributors from an earlier systematic review of reported studies addressing the same research question. In our systematic review, eligible studies were done between March 1, 2009 (Mexico), or April 1, 2009 (rest of the world), until the WHO declaration of the end of the pandemic (Aug 10, 2010); however, we continued to receive data up to March 14, 2011, from ongoing studies. We did a meta-analysis of individual participant data to assess the association between neuraminidase inhibitor treatment and mortality (primary outcome), adjusting for both treatment propensity and potential confounders, using generalised linear mixed modelling. We assessed the association with time to treatment using time-dependent Cox regression shared frailty modelling.

Findings: We included data for 29,234 patients from 78 studies of patients admitted to hospital between Jan 2, 2009, and March 14, 2011. Compared with no treatment, neuraminidase inhibitor treatment (irrespective of timing) was associated with a reduction in mortality risk (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0·81; 95% CI 0·70-0·93; p=0·0024). Compared with later treatment, early treatment (within 2 days of symptom onset) was associated with a reduction in mortality risk (adjusted OR 0·48; 95% CI 0·41-0·56; p<0·0001). Early treatment versus no treatment was also associated with a reduction in mortality (adjusted OR 0·50; 95% CI 0·37-0·67; p<0·0001). These associations with reduced mortality risk were less pronounced and not significant in children. There was an increase in the mortality hazard rate with each day's delay in initiation of treatment up to day 5 as compared with treatment initiated within 2 days of symptom onset (adjusted hazard ratio [HR 1·23] [95% CI 1·18-1·28]; p<0·0001 for the increasing HR with each day's delay).

Interpretation: We advocate early instigation of neuraminidase inhibitor treatment in adults admitted to hospital with suspected or proven influenza infection.

Funding: F Hoffmann-La Roche.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2213-2600(14)70041-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6637757PMC
May 2014

In vitro HIV-1 evolution in response to triple reverse transcriptase inhibitors & in silico phenotypic analysis.

PLoS One 2013 17;8(4):e61102. Epub 2013 Apr 17.

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pneumonology-Immunology, Charité University Medical Center, Berlin, Germany.

Background: Effectiveness of ART regimens strongly depends upon complex interactions between the selective pressure of drugs and the evolution of mutations that allow or restrict drug resistance.

Methods: Four clinical isolates from NRTI-exposed, NNRTI-naive subjects were passaged in increasing concentrations of NVP in combination with 1 µM 3 TC and 2 µM ADV to assess selective pressures of multi-drug treatment. A novel parameter inference procedure, based on a stochastic viral growth model, was used to estimate phenotypic resistance and fitness from in vitro combination passage experiments.

Results: Newly developed mathematical methods estimated key phenotypic parameters of mutations arising through selective pressure exerted by 3 TC and NVP. Concentrations of 1 µM 3 TC maintained the M184V mutation, which was associated with intrinsic fitness deficits. Increasing NVP concentrations selected major NNRTI resistance mutations. The evolutionary pathway of NVP resistance was highly dependent on the viral genetic background, epistasis as well as stochasticity. Parameter estimation indicated that the previously unrecognized mutation L228Q was associated with NVP resistance in some isolates.

Conclusion: Serial passage of viruses in the presence of multiple drugs may resemble the selection of mutations observed among treated individuals and populations in vivo and indicate evolutionary preferences and restrictions. Phenotypic resistance estimated here "in silico" from in vitro passage experiments agreed well with previous knowledge, suggesting that the unique combination of "wet-" and "dry-lab" experimentation may improve our understanding of HIV-1 resistance evolution in the future.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0061102PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3629221PMC
November 2013

Antiviral resistance and correlates of virologic failure in the first cohort of HIV-infected children gaining access to structured antiretroviral therapy in Lima, Peru: a cross-sectional analysis.

BMC Infect Dis 2013 Jan 2;13. Epub 2013 Jan 2.

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pneumonology-Immunology, Charité University Medical Center, Berlin, Germany.

Background: The impact of extended use of ART in developing countries has been enormous. A thorough understanding of all factors contributing to the success of antiretroviral therapy is required. The current study aims to investigate the value of cross-sectional drug resistance monitoring using DNA and RNA oligonucleotide ligation assays (OLA) in treatment cohorts in low-resource settings. The study was conducted in the first cohort of children gaining access to structured ART in Peru.

Methods: Between 2002-5, 46 eligible children started the standard regimen of AZT, 3TC and NFV Patients had a median age of 5.6 years (range: 0.7-14y), a median viral load of 1.7·105 RNA/ml (range: 2.1·10(3) - 1.2·10(6)), and a median CD4-count of 232 cells/μL (range: 1-1591). Of these, 20 patients were classified as CDC clinical category C and 31/46 as CDC immune category 3. At the time of cross-sectional analysis in 2005, adherence questionnaires were administered. DNA OLAs and RNA OLAs were performed from frozen PBMC and plasma, RNA genotyping from dried blood spots.

Results: During the first year of ART, 44% of children experienced virologic failure, with an additional 9% failing by the end of the second year. Virologic failure was significantly associated with the number of resistance mutations detected by DNA-OLA (p < 0.001) during cross-sectional analysis, but also with low immunologic CDC-scores at baseline (p < 0.001). Children who had been exposed to unsupervised short-term antiretrovirals before starting structured ART showed significantly higher numbers of resistance mutations by DNA-OLA (p = 0.01). Detection of M184V (3TC resistance) by RNA-OLA and DNA-OLA demonstrated a sensitivity of 0.93 and 0.86 and specificity of 0.67 and 0.7, respectively, for the identification of virologic failure. The RT mutations N88D and L90M (NFV resistance) detected by DNA-OLA correlated with virologic failure, whereas mutations at RT position 215 (AZT resistance) were not associated with virologic failure.

Conclusions: Advanced immunosuppression at baseline and previous exposures to unsupervised brief cycles of ART significantly impaired treatment outcomes at a time when structured ART was finally introduced in his cohort. Brief maternal exposures to with AZT +/- NVP for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission did not affect treatment outcomes in this group of children. DNA-OLA from frozen PBMC provided a highly specific tool to detect archived drug resistance. RNA consensus genotyping from dried blood spots and RNA-OLA from plasma consistently detected drug resistance mutations, but merely in association with virologic failure.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2334-13-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3782360PMC
January 2013

Persistence versus reversion of 3TC resistance in HIV-1 determine the rate of emergence of NVP resistance.

Viruses 2012 08 7;4(8):1212-34. Epub 2012 Aug 7.

Center for AIDS Research, Division of Infectious Diseases and Geographic Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.

When HIV-1 is exposed to lamivudine (3TC) at inhibitory concentrations, resistant variants carrying the reverse transcriptase (RT) substitution M184V emerge rapidly. This substitution confers high-level 3TC resistance and increased RT fidelity. We established a novel in vitro system to study the effect of starting nevirapine (NVP) in 3TC-resistant/NNRTI-naïve clinical isolates, and the impact of maintaining versus dropping 3TC pressure in this setting. Because M184V mutant HIV-1 seems hypersusceptible to adefovir (ADV), we also tested the effect of ADV pressure on the same isolates. We draw four conclusions from our experiments simulating combination therapy in vitro. (1) The presence of low-dose (1 μM) 3TC prevented reversal to wild-type from an M184V mutant background. (2) Adding low-dose 3TC in the presence of NVP delayed the selection of NVP-associated mutations. (3) The presence of ADV, in addition to NVP, led to more rapid reversal to wild-type at position 184 than NVP alone. (4) ADV plus NVP selected for greater numbers of mutations than NVP alone. Inference about the "selection of mutation" is based on two statistical models, one at the viral level, more telling, and the other at the level of predominance of mutation within a population. Multidrug pressure experiments lend understanding to mechanisms of HIV resistance as they bear upon new treatment strategies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/v4081212DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3446758PMC
August 2012

Rotavirus encephalitis with basal ganglia involvement in an 8-month-old infant.

Clin Pediatr (Phila) 2013 Mar 25;52(3):260-4. Epub 2011 Aug 25.

Children's Hospital of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA, USA.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0009922811417301DOI Listing
March 2013

Persistent Bordetella bronchiseptica pneumonia in an immunocompetent infant and genetic comparison of clinical isolates with kennel cough vaccine strains.

Clin Infect Dis 2008 Mar;46(6):905-8

Department of Pediatrics, Division of Infectious Diseases, Tulane University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.

An infant who experienced recurrent episodes of respiratory failure received a diagnosis of pertussis on the basis of immunofluorescence testing, but culture revealed macrolide-resistant Bordetella bronchiseptica. Genetic analysis demonstrated that the child was not infected with a kennel cough vaccine strain, although the family's dog had recently been vaccinated. The infection cleared with imipenem therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/528858DOI Listing
March 2008