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    Evaluation of Taterapox Virus in Small Animals.
    Viruses 2017 Aug 1;9(8). Epub 2017 Aug 1.
    Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Saint Louis University School of Medicine, 1100 South Grand Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63104, USA.
    Taterapox virus (TATV), which was isolated from an African gerbil (Tatera kempi) in 1975, is the most closely related virus to variola; however, only the original report has examined its virology. We have evaluated the tropism of TATV in vivo in small animals. We found that TATV does not infect Graphiurus kelleni, a species of African dormouse, but does induce seroconversion in the Mongolian gerbil (Meriones unguiculatus) and in mice; however, in wild-type mice and gerbils, the virus produces an unapparent infection. Read More

    OH1 from Orf Virus: A New Tyrosine Phosphatase that Displays Distinct Structural Features and Triple Substrate Specificity.
    J Mol Biol 2017 Jul 25. Epub 2017 Jul 25.
    Sección Bioquímica y Biología Molecular, Facultad de Ciencias, UdelaR, 11400 Montevideo, Uruguay. Electronic address:
    Viral tyrosine phosphatases such as VH1 from Vaccinia and Variola virus are recognized as important effectors of host-pathogen interactions. While proteins sharing sequence to VH1 have been identified in other viruses, their structural and functional characterization is not known. In this work, we determined the crystal structure of the VH1 homolog in the Orf virus, herein named OH1. Read More

    Characterization of Two Historic Smallpox Specimens from a Czech Museum.
    Viruses 2017 Jul 27;9(8). Epub 2017 Jul 27.
    Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology, Neuherbergstr. 11, 80937 Munich, Germany.
    Although smallpox has been known for centuries, the oldest available variola virus strains were isolated in the early 1940s. At that time, large regions of the world were already smallpox-free. Therefore, genetic information of these strains can represent only the very last fraction of a long evolutionary process. Read More

    Comparing New-Generation Candidate Vaccines against Human Orthopoxvirus Infections.
    Acta Naturae 2017 Apr-Jun;9(2):88-93
    State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology «Vector», Koltsovo, Novosibirsk region, 630559 , Russia.
    The lack of immunity to the variola virus in the population, increasingly more frequent cases of human orthopoxvirus infection, and increased risk of the use of the variola virus (VARV) as a bioterrorism agent call for the development of modern, safe vaccines against orthopoxvirus infections. We previously developed a polyvalent DNA vaccine based on five VARV antigens and an attenuated variant of the vaccinia virus (VACV) with targeted deletion of six genes (VACΔ6). Independent experiments demonstrated that triple immunization with a DNA vaccine and double immunization with VACΔ6 provide protection to mice against a lethal dose (10 LD50) of the ectromelia virus (ECTV), which is highly pathogenic for mice. Read More

    Species specificity of vaccinia virus complement control protein towards bovine classical pathway is governed primarily by direct interaction of its acidic residues with factor I.
    J Virol 2017 Jul 19. Epub 2017 Jul 19.
    Complement Biology Laboratory, National Centre for Cell Science, S. P. Pune University Campus, Ganeshkhind, Pune 411007, India
    Poxviruses display species tropism - variola virus is a human-specific virus, while vaccinia virus causes repeated outbreaks in dairy cattle. Consistent with this, variola virus complement regulator SPICE exhibit selectivity in inhibiting the human alternative complement pathway and vaccinia virus complement regulator VCP display selectivity in inhibiting the bovine alternative complement pathway. In the present study, we examined the species-specificity of VCP and SPICE towards the classical pathway (CP). Read More

    Production of a Chikungunya Vaccine Using a CHO Cell and Attenuated Viral-Based Platform Technology.
    Mol Ther 2017 Jul 15. Epub 2017 Jul 15.
    Experimental Therapeutics Laboratory, Hanson Institute and Sansom Institute for Health Research, School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia; Robinson Research Institute and Adelaide Medical School, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia. Electronic address:
    Vaccinia-based systems have been extensively explored for the development of recombinant vaccines. Herein we describe an innovative vaccinia virus (VACV)-derived vaccine platform technology termed Sementis Copenhagen Vector (SCV), which was rendered multiplication-defective by targeted deletion of the essential viral assembly gene D13L. A SCV cell substrate line was developed for SCV vaccine production by engineering CHO cells to express D13 and the VACV host-range factor CP77, because CHO cells are routinely used for manufacture of biologics. Read More

    Randomised controlled trials and changing public health practice.
    BMC Public Health 2017 May 30;17(Suppl 1):409. Epub 2017 May 30.
    CIET Trust, Gaborone, Botswana.
    One reason for doing randomised controlled trials (RCTs) is that experiments can be convincing. Early epidemiological experimenters, such as Jenner and the smallpox vaccine and Snow and his famous Broad Street pump handle, already knew the answer they were demonstrating; they used the experiments as knowledge translation devices to convince others.More sophisticated modern experiments include cluster randomised controlled trials (CRCTs) for experiments in the public health setting. Read More

    Inhibition of Poxvirus Gene Expression and Genome Replication by Bisbenzimide Derivatives.
    J Virol 2017 Jun 28. Epub 2017 Jun 28.
    Institute of Biochemistry, ETH Zurich
    Virus infection of humans and livestock can be devastating for individuals and populations, sometimes resulting in large economic and societal impact. Prevention of virus disease by vaccination or anti-viral agents is difficult to achieve. A notable exception was the eradication of human smallpox by vaccination over 30 years ago. Read More

    Smallpox vaccination: an early start of modern medicine in America.
    J Community Hosp Intern Med Perspect 2017 Jan 31;7(1):61-63. Epub 2017 Mar 31.
    Department of Internal Medicine, University of Maryland Medical Center, Baltimore, MD, USA.
    Smallpox was eradicated by the World Health Organization in 1980. Before its eradication thedisease had a mortality rate upwards of 50% and had a significant impact on society. During theAmerican Revolutionary war, smallpox outbreaks were impeding the American war effort until1777 when George Washington carried out a mass inoculation campaign in the ContinentalArmy that reduced the mortality from smallpox to less than 2%. Read More

    Vaccination with a codon-optimized A27L-containing plasmid decreases virus replication and dissemination after vaccinia virus challenge.
    Vaccine 2017 Jun 16. Epub 2017 Jun 16.
    Department of Microbiology and Medical Zoology, University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus, School of Medicine, San Juan, PR 00936, United States. Electronic address:
    Smallpox is a disease caused by Variola virus (VARV). Although eradicated by WHO in 1980, the threat of using VARV on a bioterror attack has increased. The current smallpox vaccine ACAM2000, which consists of live vaccinia virus (VACV), causes complications in individuals with a compromised immune system or with previously reported skin diseases. Read More

    Induction, treatment and prevention of eczema vaccinatum in atopic dermatitis mouse models.
    Vaccine 2017 Jul 20;35(33):4245-4254. Epub 2017 Jun 20.
    Department of Infectious Diseases, Israel Institute for Biological Research (IIBR), Ness-Ziona, Israel. Electronic address:
    Eczema vaccinatum is a severe and occasionally lethal complication of smallpox vaccine, characterized by systemic viral dissemination, distant from the initial inoculation site of the vaccine. A major risk factor for eczema vaccinatum is a background of atopic dermatitis, a chronic, common allergic, relapsing disorder, manifested by dry and inflamed skin, itchy rash, Th2 biased immune response and hypersensitivity to various antigens. Unlike the severe manifestations of eczema vaccinatum in humans, current models present only mild symptoms that limits examination of potential therapeutics for eczema vaccinatum. Read More

    Vaccine hesitancy: parental, professional and public responsibility.
    Ann Ist Super Sanita 2017 Apr-Jun;53(2):157-162
    President, Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Rome, Italy.
    The opposition to vaccinations is a well-known phenomenon that dates back to the Victorian age when it was self-limited by the awareness of the importance to be protected against fearsome infectious diseases. In the XX century, the mass use of vaccination has - instead - consented to eradicate or drastically reduce the burden of diseases such as smallpox and polio. These positive effects of the vaccination campaigns have blurred out, if not erased, the memory of the tragic consequences of the past's widespread diseases, leading people to underestimate the severity of the harm that vaccinations prevent. Read More

    Comparative Efficacy of Intramuscular and Scarification Routes of Administration of Live Smallpox Vaccine in a Murine Challenge Model.
    Vaccine 2017 Jul 9;35(31):3889-3896. Epub 2017 Jun 9.
    CBR Division, Dstl Porton Down, Salisbury SP4 0JQ, UK; The Pirbright Institute, Ash Road, Woking GU24 0NF, UK. Electronic address:
    In recent years concern has mounted regarding the possibility of a re-emergence of smallpox through biowarfare or bioterrorism. There is also concern over the incidence of human monkeypox in endemic areas and the potential for monkeypox to be accidentally transported to non-endemic areas. In the event of re-emergence of smallpox or emergence of monkeypox, the accepted route of administration for live replicating smallpox vaccine is dermal scarification, which generates a virus-shedding lesion that persists for several days at the vaccination site. Read More

    Functional paralysis of GM-CSF-derived bone marrow cells productively infected with ectromelia virus.
    PLoS One 2017 12;12(6):e0179166. Epub 2017 Jun 12.
    Department of Preclinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Warsaw University of Life Sciences-SGGW, Warsaw, Poland.
    Ectromelia virus (ECTV) is an orthopoxvirus responsible for mousepox, a lethal disease of certain strains of mice that is similar to smallpox in humans, caused by variola virus (VARV). ECTV, similar to VARV, exhibits a narrow host range and has co-evolved with its natural host. Consequently, ECTV employs sophisticated and host-specific strategies to control the immune cells that are important for induction of antiviral immune response. Read More

    Classification of Cowpox Viruses into Several Distinct Clades and Identification of a Novel Lineage.
    Viruses 2017 Jun 10;9(6). Epub 2017 Jun 10.
    Institute of Diagnostic Virology, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, Südufer 10, 17493 Greifswald, Germany.
    Cowpox virus (CPXV) was considered as uniform species within the genus Orthopoxvirus (OPV). Previous phylogenetic analysis indicated that CPXV is polyphyletic and isolates may cluster into different clades with two of these clades showing genetic similarities to either variola (VARV) or vaccinia viruses (VACV). Further analyses were initiated to assess both the genetic diversity and the evolutionary background of circulating CPXVs. Read More

    Novel Nonreplicating Vaccinia Virus Vector Enhances Expression of Heterologous Genes and Suppresses Synthesis of Endogenous Viral Proteins.
    MBio 2017 Jun 6;8(3). Epub 2017 Jun 6.
    Laboratory of Viral Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA
    Viruses are used as expression vectors for protein synthesis, immunology research, vaccines, and therapeutics. Advantages of poxvirus vectors include the accommodation of large amounts of heterologous DNA, the presence of a cytoplasmic site of transcription, and high expression levels. On the other hand, competition of approximately 200 viral genes with the target gene for expression and immune recognition may be disadvantageous. Read More

    Duration of neutralizing antibody persisting in Thai individuals after childhood vaccination against smallpox.
    Asian Pac J Allergy Immunol 2017 Jun 1. Epub 2017 Jun 1.
    Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand.
    Background: Although smallpox was completely eliminated by 1980, it remains possible that variola virus could be intentionally released in an act of bioterrorism. Thus, several studies have been performed to detect antibody levels after smallpox vaccination of the current population in various countries to indicate the duration of maintenance of immunological memory. Our study endeavored to investigate the level of neutralizing (Nt) antibody responses of Thai individuals who had been immunized with smallpox vaccine during childhood. Read More

    Voluntary Vaccination through Self-organizing Behaviors on Locally-mixed Social Networks.
    Sci Rep 2017 Jun 1;7(1):2665. Epub 2017 Jun 1.
    School of Cyberspace, Hangzhou Dianzi University, Hangzhou, 310018, China.
    Voluntary vaccination reflects how individuals weigh the risk of infection and the cost of vaccination against the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases, such as smallpox and measles. In a homogeneously mixing population, the infection risk of an individual depends largely on the proportion of vaccinated individuals due to the effects of herd immunity. While in a structured population, the infection risk can also be affected by the structure of individuals' social network. Read More

    [The court physician, the clergyman, a learned society and smallpox].
    Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd 2017 ;161(0):D1111
    Universiteit Maastricht, Onderwijsinstituut Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Maastricht.
    Variolation was introduced in England in the first half of the 18th century. The positive effects of this new method for preventing smallpox were already known in the Netherlands around 1720, one of whom was the Dutch physician Boerhaave. In spite of this, it took another 30 years before variolation was used in the Netherlands. Read More

    Considering the "public" in public health: popular resistance to the Smallpox Eradication Programme in India.
    Indian J Med Ethics 2017 Apr-Jun;2(2):104-111
    Associate Professor, Department of Geography, 123 Major Williams Hall, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA 24061 USA,.
    Public health initiatives, including large-scale vaccination and disease eradication programmes, regularly pit the rights of the individual against broader benefits to society. At times, the public resists such initiatives, with the World Health Organisation's Smallpox Eradication Programme (SEP) in India being a case in point. Here, we critically investigate resistance to smallpox vaccines in India and argue that while the SEP successfully eradicated a global killer; individuals were stripped of human rights through coercion, forcible vaccination and quarantine. Read More

    Ethical and legal challenges of vaccines and vaccination: Reflections.
    Indian J Med Ethics 2017 Apr-Jun;2(2):72-74
    Advocate, Courtyard Attorneys, 47/1345, MIG Adarsh Nagar, Worli, Mumbai 400 030 India,.
    Vaccines and vaccination have emerged as key medical scientific tools for prevention of certain diseases. Documentation of the history of vaccination shows that the initial popular resistance to universal vaccination was based on false assumptions and eventually gave way to acceptance of vaccines and trust in their ability to save lives. The successes of the global eradication of smallpox, and now of polio, have only strengthened the premier position occupied by vaccines in disease prevention. Read More

    Cowpox virus: What's in a Name?
    Viruses 2017 May 9;9(5). Epub 2017 May 9.
    Bundeswehr Institute of Microbiology, Neuherbergstr 11, 80937 Munich, Germany.
    Traditionally, virus taxonomy relied on phenotypic properties; however, a sequence-based virus taxonomy has become essential since the recent requirement of a species to exhibit monophyly. The species Cowpox virus has failed to meet this requirement, necessitating a reexamination of this species. Here, we report the genomic sequences of nine Cowpox viruses and, by combining them with the available data of 37 additional genomes, confirm polyphyly of Cowpox viruses and find statistical support based on genetic data for more than a dozen species. Read More

    A medical enigma : what "gale chinoise (Chinese scabies)" meant 150 years ago.
    Med Sante Trop 2017 Jun;27(2):126-130
    Centre René Labusquière, Université de Bordeaux 3, Bordeaux, France.
    Context: The meaning of the term "gale chinoise" mentioned in some articles about French overseas territories in the 19th century, remains unclear. In response to a query of an American colleague dermatologist trying to find out what it meant 150 years ago, we attempted to elucidate the nature of this ancient disease, which today would be translated literally as Chinese scabies.

    Method: We submitted the query to a panel of civilian and military French tropical medicine specialists including dermatologists, through two networks : Association Amicale Santé Navale et d'Outre-Mer and Société de Pathologie Exotique. Read More

    Oncolytic efficacy of thymidine kinase-deleted vaccinia virus strain Guang9.
    Oncotarget 2017 Jun;8(25):40533-40543
    Key Laboratory of Nuclear Medicine, Ministry of Health, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Molecular Nuclear Medicine, Jiangsu Institute of Nuclear Medicine, Wuxi, Jiangsu, China.
    Oncolytic virotherapy is being developed as a promising platform for cancer therapy due to its ability to lyse cancer cells in a tumor-specific manner. Vaccinia virus has been used as a live vaccine in the smallpox eradication program and now is being potential in cancer therapy with a great safety profile. Vaccinia strain Guang9 (VG9) is an attenuated Chinese vaccinia virus and its oncolytic efficacy has been evaluated in our previous study. Read More

    Ivermectin and malaria control.
    Malar J 2017 Apr 24;16(1):172. Epub 2017 Apr 24.
    Graduate School of Infection Control Sciences, Kitasato University, 5-9-1 Shirokane, Minato-ku, Tokyo, 108-8641, Japan.
    As the world begins to realize the very real prospect of eliminating malaria as a public health problem globally, the scientific community is acutely aware that novel and innovative new tools will be required if that lofty goal is to be accomplished. Moreover, the need for comprehensive, integrated products and interventions is being recognized in order for the critical 'final steps' toward elimination to be taken successfully. Failure to take these crucial last steps have dogged all past global disease elimination programmes, except for smallpox. Read More

    Review of poxvirus: emergence of monkeypox.
    Med Sante Trop 2017 Feb;27(1):29-39
    Service de dermatologie, HIA Sainte-Anne, Toulon, France.
    This article reviews the different types of poxvirus infections. Smallpox, although eradicated, must continue to be monitored because of the potential risk of accidental or voluntary (by bioterrorism) reintroduction. Monkeypox and cowpox viruses are considered to be emergent today ; their high risk of dissemination is due to the increase in international transport as well as trends for new animals as pets and the loss of vaccinal protection against smallpox. Read More

    Preparing for biological threats: Addressing the needs of pregnant women.
    Birth Defects Res 2017 Mar;109(5):391-398
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia.
    Intentional release of infectious agents and biological weapons to cause illness and death has the potential to greatly impact pregnant women and their fetuses. We review what is known about the maternal and fetal effects of seven biological threats: Bacillus anthracis (anthrax); variola virus (smallpox); Clostridium botulinum toxin (botulism); Burkholderia mallei (glanders) and Burkholderia pseudomallei (melioidosis); Yersinia pestis (plague); Francisella tularensis (tularemia); and Rickettsia prowazekii (typhus). Evaluating the potential maternal, fetal, and infant consequences of an intentional release of an infectious agent requires an assessment of several key issues: (1) are pregnant women more susceptible to infection or illness compared to the general population?; (2) are pregnant women at increased risk for severe illness, morbidity, and mortality compared to the general population?; (3) does infection or illness during pregnancy place women, the fetus, or the infant at increased risk for adverse outcomes and how does this affect clinical management?; and (4) are the medical countermeasures recommended for the general population safe and effective during pregnancy? These issues help frame national guidance for the care of pregnant women during an intentional release of a biological threat. Read More

    Relocating Pastorian Medicine: Accommodation and Acclimatization of Pastorian Practices against Smallpox at the Pasteur Institute of Chengdu, China, 1908-1927.
    Sci Context 2017 Mar;30(1):33-59
    Department of History,University of California,Los
    Argument Revising the diffusionist view of current scholarship on the Pasteur Institutes in China, this paper demonstrates the ways in which local networks and circumstances informed the circulation and construction of knowledge and practices relating to smallpox prophylaxis in the Southwest of China during the early twentieth century. I argue that the Pasteur Institute of Chengdu did not operate in a natural continuity with the preceding local French medical institutions, but rather presented an intentional break from them. This Institute, as the first established by the French in China, strove for political and administrative independence both from the Chinese authority and from the Catholic Church. Read More

    Efficacy of delayed brincidofovir treatment against a lethal rabbitpox virus challenge in New Zealand White rabbits.
    Antiviral Res 2017 Jul 7;143:278-286. Epub 2017 Apr 7.
    Chimerix, Durham, NC, USA.
    In the event of a bioterror attack with variola virus (smallpox), exposure may only be identified following onset of fever. To determine if antiviral therapy with brincidofovir (BCV; CMX001) initiated at, or following, onset of fever could prevent severe illness and death, a lethal rabbitpox model was used. BCV is in advanced development as an antiviral for the treatment of smallpox under the US Food and Drug Administration's 'Animal Rule'. Read More

    Generation and Production of Modified Vaccinia Virus Ankara (MVA) as a Vaccine Vector.
    Methods Mol Biol 2017 ;1581:97-119
    The Jenner Institute, University of Oxford, Research Bldg., Old Road Campus, ORCRB, Oxford, OX3 7DQ, UK.
    The smallpox vaccine based on the vaccinia virus was successfully used to eradicate smallpox, but although very effective, it was a very reactogenic vaccine and responsible for the deaths of one to two people per million vaccinated. Modified Vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) is an attenuated derivative, also used in the smallpox eradication campaign and now being developed as a recombinant viral vector to produce vaccines against infectious diseases and cancer. MVA can encode one or more foreign antigens and thus can function as a multivalent vaccine. Read More

    Vaccinia virus evasion of regulated cell death.
    Immunol Lett 2017 Jun 31;186:68-80. Epub 2017 Mar 31.
    Department of Pathology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 1QP, United Kingdom. Electronic address:
    Regulated cell death is a powerful anti-viral mechanism capable of aborting the virus replicative cycle and alerting neighbouring cells to the threat of infection. The biological importance of regulated cell death is illustrated by the rich repertoire of host signalling cascades causing cell death and by the multiple strategies exhibited by viruses to block death signal transduction and preserve cell viability. Vaccinia virus (VACV), a poxvirus and the vaccine used to eradicate smallpox, encodes multiple proteins that interfere with apoptotic, necroptotic and pyroptotic signalling. Read More

    The origins of the vaccine cold chain and a glimpse of the future.
    Vaccine 2017 Apr;35(17):2115-2120
    7 Avenue Pasteur 71700 Tournus, France. Electronic address:
    International efforts to eradicate smallpox in the 1960s and 1970s provided the foundation for efforts to expand immunization programmes, including work to develop immunization supply chains. The need to create a reliable system to keep vaccines cold during the lengthy journey from the manufacturer to the point of use, even in remote areas, was a crucial concern during the early days of the Expanded Programme on Immunization. The vaccine cold chain was deliberately separated from other medical distribution systems to assure timely access to and control of vaccines and injection materials. Read More

    Variola minor in coalfield areas of England and Wales, 1921-34: Geographical determinants of a national smallpox epidemic that spread out of effective control.
    Soc Sci Med 2017 May 23;180:160-169. Epub 2017 Mar 23.
    Department of Geography, University of Cambridge, Downing Place, Cambridge, CB2 3EN, UK.
    This paper uses techniques of binary logistic regression to identify the spatial determinants of the last national epidemic of smallpox to spread in England and Wales, the variola minor epidemic of 1921-34. Adjusting for age and county-level variations in vaccination coverage in infancy, the analysis identifies a dose-response gradient with increasing odds of elevated smallpox rates in local government areas with (i) medium (odds ratio [OR] = 5.32, 95% Confidence Interval [95% CI] 1. Read More

    Cutting the Stone: Health Defined in the Era of Value-based Care.
    Cureus 2017 Feb 10;9(2):e1023. Epub 2017 Feb 10.
    Science Department, University College Roosevelt.
    The immune system contributes to the maintenance of health by preventing and limiting the clinical consequences of infections by pathogenic microorganisms. During the evolution of Homo sapiens, those with the fittest immune system survived. The immune system of Homo sapiens was further improved and adapted by admixture with Neanderthal genes. Read More

    Digital triplex DNA assay based on plasmonic nanocrystals.
    Anal Bioanal Chem 2017 May 22;409(14):3657-3666. Epub 2017 Mar 22.
    Institute of Optical Imaging and Sensing, Shenzhen Key Laboratory for Minimal Invasive Medical Technologies, Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, Shenzhen, Guangdong, 518055, China.
    A new analytical method has been developed to detect three kinds of DNA simultaneously based on magnetic beads and color-encoded plasmonic nanocrystals. Magnetic beads modified with capture DNA are employed to collect the specific target DNA, and color-encoded plasmonic nanocrystals are applied to signal the target through DNA hybridization. As a proof of concept, three types of representative metal nanocrystals of gold nanoparticle (AuNP), gold nanorod (AuNR), and gold/silver nanoparticle (Au/AgNP) were employed to signal three dissimilar virus-related protective antigen genes, Ebola virus (EV), Variola virus (VV), and Bacillus anthracis (BA), respectively. Read More

    Monkeypox Virus Host Factor Screen Using Haploid Cells Identifies Essential Role of GARP Complex in Extracellular Virus Formation.
    J Virol 2017 Jun 12;91(11). Epub 2017 May 12.
    Poxvirus and Rabies Branch, Division of High Consequence Pathogens and Pathology, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
    Monkeypox virus (MPXV) is a human pathogen that is a member of the Orthopoxvirus genus, which includes Vaccinia virus and Variola virus (the causative agent of smallpox). Human monkeypox is considered an emerging zoonotic infectious disease. To identify host factors required for MPXV infection, we performed a genome-wide insertional mutagenesis screen in human haploid cells. Read More

    Novel Orthopoxvirus Infection in an Alaska Resident.
    Clin Infect Dis 2017 Jun;64(12):1737-1741
    Alaska Division of Public Health, Section of Epidemiology, Anchorage.
    Background.: Human infection by orthopoxviruses is being reported with increasing frequency, attributed in part to the cessation of smallpox vaccination and concomitant waning of population-level immunity. In July 2015, a female resident of interior Alaska presented to an urgent care clinic with a dermal lesion consistent with poxvirus infection. Read More

    Treacle and Smallpox: Two Tests for Multicriteria Decision Analysis Models in Health Technology Assessment.
    Value Health 2017 Mar 20;20(3):512-515. Epub 2016 Dec 20.
    Department of Management Science, University of Strathclyde Business School, Glasgow, UK. Electronic address:
    Multicriteria decision analysis (MCDA) is rightly receiving increasing attention in health technology assessment. Nevertheless, a distinguishing feature of the health domain is that technologies must actually improve health, and good performance on other criteria cannot compensate for failure to do so. We argue for two reasonable tests for MCDA models: the treacle test (can a winning intervention be incompletely ineffective?) and the smallpox test (can a winning intervention be for a disease that no one suffers from?). Read More

    We strongly support childhood immunisation-statement from the European Academy of Paediatrics (EAP).
    Eur J Pediatr 2017 May 10;176(5):679-680. Epub 2017 Mar 10.
    Department Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
    The eradication of smallpox and the elimination of several other infectious diseases from much of the world has provided convincing evidence that vaccines are among the most effective interventions for promoting health. The current scepticism about immunisation among members of the new US administration carries a risk of decreasing immunisation rates also in Europe. While only a small minority of the population are strongly anti-vaccine, their public activities have significantly influenced an uncertainty among the general population about both the safety of and the necessity for vaccination. Read More

    Antibody Recognition of Immunodominant Vaccinia Virus Envelope Proteins.
    Subcell Biochem 2017 ;83:103-126
    Division of Cell Biology, La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology (LJI), La Jolla, CA, 92037, USA.
    Vaccinia Virus (VACV) is an enveloped double stranded DNA virus and the active ingredient of the smallpox vaccine. The systematic administration of this vaccine led to the eradication of circulating smallpox (variola virus, VARV) from the human population. As a tribute to its success, global immunization was ended in the late 1970s. Read More

    Safety and immunogenicity of a modified vaccinia Ankara vaccine using three immunization schedules and two modes of delivery: A randomized clinical non-inferiority trial.
    Vaccine 2017 Mar 27;35(13):1675-1682. Epub 2017 Feb 27.
    The Emmes Corporation, Rockville, MD, United States.
    Introduction: To guide the use of modified vaccinia Ankara (MVA) vaccine in response to a release of smallpox virus, the immunogenicity and safety of shorter vaccination intervals, and administration by jet injector (JI), were compared to the standard schedule of administration on Days 1 and 29 by syringe and needle (S&N).

    Methods: Healthy adults 18-40years of age were randomly assigned to receive MVA vaccine subcutaneously by S&N on Days 1 and 29 (standard), Days 1 and 15, or Days 1 and 22, or to receive the vaccine subcutaneously by JI on Days 1 and 29. Blood was collected at four time points after the second vaccination for plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) (primary endpoint) and ELISA (secondary endpoint) antibody assays. Read More

    Presumptive risk factors for monkeypox in rural communities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
    PLoS One 2017 13;12(2):e0168664. Epub 2017 Feb 13.
    US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Poxvirus and Rabies Branch, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.
    Monkeypox virus (MPXV), a close relative of Variola virus, is a zoonotic virus with an unknown reservoir. Interaction with infected wildlife, bites from peri-domestic animals, and bushmeat hunting are hypothesized routes of infection from wildlife to humans. Using a Risk Questionnaire, performed in monkeypox-affected areas of rural Democratic Republic of the Congo, we describe the lifestyles and demographics associated with presumptive risk factors for MPXV infection. Read More

    Viral Evolution: Mummy Virus Challenges Presumed History of Smallpox.
    Curr Biol 2017 Feb;27(3):R119-R120
    Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, University of California, San Diego, CA 92093, USA. Electronic address:
    Despite evidence of smallpox in antiquity, a new study of a 350 year-old Lithuanian child mummy suggests that the global viral genetic diversity circulating during the 20(th) century was only around 200 years old. Read More

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