Publications by authors named "Muhammad Faraz Khan"

5 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Transmission frequency of COVID-19 through pre-symptomatic and asymptomatic patients in AJK: a report of 201 cases.

Virol J 2021 07 3;18(1):138. Epub 2021 Jul 3.

College of Medicine, University of Central Florida, Florida, USA.

Background: The COVID-19 pandemic is a catastrophic global phenomenon, affecting human life in a way unseen since the 1918 influenza pandemic. Effective management of this threat requires halting transmission, a strategy requiring accurate knowledge of SARS-CoV-2 transmission patterns.

Methods: This was a retrospective contact study aiming to estimate the transmission rate of COVID-19 by tracing contacts in symptomatic, pre-symptomatic, and asymptomatic patients. History of patients' contacts during 24 h before appearance of symptoms or infection confirmation was traced for disease transmission.

Results: Overall, a total of 201 COVID-19 patients had contact with 7168 people in 24 h with an average of 35.66 contacts per patient, ranging from a minimum of 4 to maximum of 87 contacts (meetings). Out of 7168 persons met, infection was detected in 64 (0.89%). For the 155 symptomatic patients, a total of 5611 contacted persons were traced before appearance of symptoms (pre-symptomatic) in last 24 h with an average of 36.20 meetings per patient. The infection was transmitted in 63 (1.12%) people with 5548 (98.88%) remaining uninfected. Out of the 63 transmissions, 62 (98.4%) were traced within 6 h before symptom onset, while only 1 was identified in the 6-12 h timeframe before symptoms. A total of 1557 persons were traced having meeting/contacts with asymptomatic cases in last 24 h before infection confirmation. Out of these 1557 persons, only 1 was found to be infected and the infection rate was calculated to be 0.06%. Statistically, the transmission rate by pre-symptomatic patients was found to be significantly higher than the transmission rate by asymptomatic individuals (P < 0.05).

Conclusion: In the studied population, the risk of pre-symptomatic and asymptomatic transmission of COVID-19 was low, with transmission risks of 1.12% and 0.06% respectively. Pre-symptomatic infection becomes very rare in contacts made longer than 6 h before onset of symptoms. The infection transmission is traced as long as about 9 h before the appearance of clear symptoms in the patients, but the incidence rate was as low as about 0.02% of the total contacts in that period.
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July 2021

Perception, preparedness and response of health care personals towards COVID-19 pandemic in Azad Jammu & Kashmir, Pakistan: A cross sectional interview based study.

Clin Epidemiol Glob Health 2021 Jul-Sep;11:100783. Epub 2021 Jun 1.

Saidu Medical College, Swat, KPK, Pakistan.

Objective: To assess the state of knowledge, perception, preparedness and satisfaction level of health care personals (HCPs) in Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) towards COVID-19.

Study Design: It was cross sectional survey conducted by personal interviews.

Methodology: The study was conducted by interviewing 302 HCPs from 7 major district headquarter hospitals of AJK from May to September 2020. The questionnaire included 29 questions about demography, perception, training, preparedness, knowledge and awareness of HCPs about COVID-19. The data was encoded and analyzed statistically.

Results: Majority of the respondents (78.5%) believed that corona-virus is a serious health threat. However, 10.6% perceived it as a bio-weapon and 4.3% as not dangerous. About 10% of doctors were not considering it very dangerous compared to 1% of paramedics and 2.5% of the supporting staff ( = ). About 55% of the respondents showed confidence of the steps taken by government for prevention of COVID-19 while 45% had an opposite view. More than 70% of the participants had no formal training and the ratio of trained personals was significantly higher () in paramedical staff (33%) than doctors (15%). About 53% of the respondents were not satisfied with the provision of PPEs and 64% were not satisfied with their work and wages situation. Majority of the respondents (97%) were observed to follow the protocols for personal protection.

Conclusion: Majority of HCPs perceive covid-19 as a serious health concern. However, most of the HCPs are neither well trained for the current pandemic nor fully satisfied about personal protection, work load, and wages.
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June 2021

EGCG-Mediated Potential Inhibition of Biofilm Development and Quorum Sensing in .

Int J Mol Sci 2021 May 6;22(9). Epub 2021 May 6.

College of Veterinary Medicine, Sichuan Agricultural University, No. 211 Huimin Road, Wenjiang District, Chengdu 611130, China.

(), one of the dangerous multidrug resistance pathogens, orchestrates virulence factors production through quorum sensing (QS). Since the exploration of QS inhibitors, targeting virulence to circumvent bacterial pathogenesis without causing significant growth inhibition is a promising approach to treat infections. The present study has evaluated the anti-QS and anti-infective activity of epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a bioactive ingredient of the traditional green tea, against . EGCG showed significant inhibitory effects on the development of biofilm, protease, elastase activity, swimming, and swarming motility, which was positively related to the production of C4-AHL. The expression of QS-related and QS-regulated virulence factors genes was also evaluated. Quantitative PCR analysis showed that EGCG significantly reduced the expression of , , and genes and was highly correlated with the alterations of C4-AHL production. In-vivo experiments demonstrated that EGCG treatment reduced pathogenicity in (). EGCG increased the survival of by 23.25%, 30.04%, and 36.35% in a dose-dependent manner. The findings of this study strongly suggest that EGCG could be a potential candidate for QS inhibition as an anti-virulence compound against bacterial infection.
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May 2021

An ethnopharmacological survey and comparative analysis of plants from the Sudhnoti District, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan.

J Ethnobiol Ethnomed 2021 Mar 20;17(1):14. Epub 2021 Mar 20.

Center for the Study of Human Health, Emory University, 550 Asbury Circle, Atlanta, GA, 30322, USA.

Background: This is the first comprehensive report on the traditional and novel uses of medicinal plants practiced by the indigenous communities of the Sudhnoti district of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), Pakistan. The area is rich in folklore and indigenous medicinal knowledge due to a unique tribal composition and socioeconomic conditions. This study aimed to document traditional knowledge of native plant use by the local communities, particularly those used for therapeutic purposes.

Methods: Field surveys were conducted from September 2015 to March 2017. Interviews with 125 local inhabitants of different tribes, age groups, genders, and occupations were conducted using structured and semi-structured questions along with group discussions. Data gathered on plant uses, local names, and modes of application of each plant species were organized in tables. Ethnobotanical indices such as use value (UV) and cultural significance index (CSI) were used to produce quantitative information on the plant use category, frequency, and cultural preference of species. Reports on therapeutic uses of medicinal plants were compared with previous studies.

Results: In all, 88 plant species from 45 families were reported, out of which 67 (77%) were used in ethnomedical applications. Asteraceae, Rosaceae, Fabaceae, and Lamiaceae were the dominant families. Berberis lycium was the most valued plant species, followed by Zanthoxylum armatum and Taraxacum officinale. Mentha arvensis had the highest cultural significance, followed by Mentha longifolia, Punica granatum, and Zanthoxylum armatum. Leaves were the most preferred plant parts in the preparation of medicine exclusively or mixed with other parts. The most frequently used process of crude preparation of medicinal plants was cooking. Oral intake was the predominant route of administration.

Conclusions: Our comparative analysis confirmed that most of the plants documented have uses that match those previously reported for the region and other parts of the world, with the exception of novel medicinal uses for 11 plant species, including Verbascum thapsus for earache, Elaeagnus umbellata for hepatitis, Achillea millefolium for oral care, Dicliptera roxburghiana to prevent sunstroke in cattle, Rumex hastatus for allergy antidote, Pyrus pashia for hepatitis, and Nerium oleander for diabetes.
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March 2021

Antibacterial Properties of Medicinal Plants From Pakistan Against Multidrug-Resistant ESKAPE Pathogens.

Front Pharmacol 2018 2;9:815. Epub 2018 Aug 2.

Center for the Study of Human Health, Emory University College of Arts and Sciences, Atlanta, GA, United States.

Local people in the Sudhnoti district of Pakistan share a rich practice of traditional medicine for the treatment of a variety of ailments. We selected nine plants from the Sudhnoti ethnopharmacological tradition used for the treatment of infectious and inflammatory disease. Our aim was to evaluate the anti-infective potential of extracts from these species against multidrug-resistant (MDR) ESKAPE (, and species) pathogens. Plant specimens were collected in the Sudhnoti district of Pakistan and vouchers deposited in Pakistan and the USA. Dried bulk specimens were ground into a fine powder and extracted by aqueous decoction and maceration in ethanol. Extracts were assessed for growth inhibitory activity against ESKAPE pathogens and biofilm and quorum sensing activity was assessed in . Cytotoxicity to human cells was assessed via a lactate dehydrogenase assay of treated human keratinocytes (HaCaTs). Four ethanolic extracts (, and ) inhibited the growth of MDR strains of ESKAPE pathogens (IC: 256 μg mL). All extracts, with the exception of and , exhibited significant quorum quenching in a reporter strain for I. The ethanolic extract of fruits (Extract 1290) inhibited quorum sensing (IC 32-256 μg mL) in reporter strains for I-III. The quorum quenching activity of extract 1290 was validated by detection of δ-toxin in the bacterial supernatant, with concentrations of 64-256 μg mL sufficient to yield a significant drop in δ-toxin production. None of the extracts inhibited biofilm formation at sub-inhibitory concentrations for growth. All extracts were well tolerated by human keratinocytes (LD ≥ 256 μg mL). Chemical analysis of extract 1290 by liquid chromatography-Fourier transform mass spectrometry (LC-FTMS) revealed the presence of 29 compounds, including eight with putative structural matches. In conclusion, five out of the nine selected anti-infective medicinal plants exhibited growth inhibitory activity against at least one MDR ESKAPE pathogen at concentrations not harmful to human keratinocytes. Furthermore, was identified as a source of quorum quenching natural products and further bioassay-guided fractionation of this species is merited.
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August 2018