Publications by authors named "Brian O"

2 Publications

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Infectious disease mRNA vaccines and a review on epitope prediction for vaccine design.

Brief Funct Genomics 2021 09;20(5):289-303

Data Science Institute, Faculty of Engineering & IT, University of Technology Sydney, 15 Broadway, Ultimo, 2007, New South Wales, Australia.

Messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines have recently emerged as a new type of vaccine technology, showing strong potential to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to SARS-CoV-2 which caused the pandemic, mRNA vaccines have been developed and tested to prevent infectious diseases caused by other viruses such as Zika virus, the dengue virus, the respiratory syncytial virus, influenza H7N9 and Flavivirus. Interestingly, mRNA vaccines may also be useful for preventing non-infectious diseases such as diabetes and cancer. This review summarises the current progresses of mRNA vaccines designed for a range of diseases including COVID-19. As epitope study is a primary component in the in silico design of mRNA vaccines, we also survey on advanced bioinformatics and machine learning algorithms which have been used for epitope prediction, and review on user-friendly software tools available for this purpose. Finally, we discuss some of the unanswered concerns about mRNA vaccines, such as unknown long-term side effects, and present with our perspectives on future developments in this exciting area.
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September 2021

The use of clozapine in a rural and remote region of Australia.

Australas Psychiatry 2021 04 23;29(2):134-138. Epub 2020 Dec 23.

Orygen, Australia.

Objective: Clozapine is the most effective antipsychotic available for treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Unfortunately, it is often underutilised or administered late in the treatment course, if at all. This issue is further augmented in rural and remote regions where access to treatment is sparse. This study is the first of its kind to investigate the use of clozapine in a remote and regional area of Australia with a high proportion of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander individuals.

Methods: This study includes all individuals who were commenced on clozapine between June 2013 and June 2018. Relevant clinical information was sourced from electronic medical records and descriptive statistical analysis performed.

Results: A total of 3850 patients with psychotic disorders were reviewed over 5 years, of whom 63 were commenced on clozapine. The majority were male ( = 50, 79.4%) with a mean age of 33.9 years (standard deviation 11.0). A total of 34.9% ( = 22) identified as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander. The mean length of time between diagnosis and commencement of clozapine was 7.2 years (standard deviation ±4.6 years), while the mean number of antipsychotic medications tried prior to clozapine was 4.2 (standard deviation ±1.6 antipsychotics). Clozapine was discontinued in 57.1% of the individuals in this study (41% within the first 12 months). The most common cause for cessation was poor compliance ( = 19, 30.2%).

Conclusion: While clozapine remains the most effective antipsychotic treatment, it is often commenced late in the treatment or ceased prematurely. Further work is required, particularly in remote and regional populations, to ensure treatment adherence for optimal patient outcomes.
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April 2021