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Amebic meningoencephalitis, primary [keywords]
- Identification and significance of Naegleria fowleri isolated from the hot spring which related to the first primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) patient in Taiwan. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Int J Parasitol 2013 May 9.
Naegleria fowleri can cause primary amoebic meningoencephalitis, a rapidly developing and highly lethal infectious disease. The first confirmed case of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis in Taiwan was reported in November 2011, in which the patient visited a thermal spring recreational area 1week prior to hospitalisation. Water sampling was performed to verify the presence of Naegleria at the facility. According to our results, 32% and 20% of recreational water samples were contaminated with Naegleria spp. and Acanthamoeba spp., respectively. The genotypes of Naegleria identified at the hot spring included N. fowleri, Naegleria australiensis and Naegleria lovaniensis. Using PCR, it was determined that the strain of N. fowleri in one sample possessed the same genotype 2 as the clinical isolate. Thus, the thermal spring was suggested to be the likely source of infection. This is the first known instance of simultaneously isolating N. fowleri from both a patient as well as from a hot spring in Taiwan. Following this initial study, the pools at the thermal spring recreational area were drained, scrubbed and disinfected, and a follow-up study was performed 1month later. Naegleria fowleri was not detected in follow-up testing; however, other Naegleria spp. were identified. We postulate that the biofilm in the waterlines may have provided a reservoir for free-living amoebae. The presence/absence of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria spp. did not differ significantly with any measured parameters related to water quality; however, a high percentage of the thermal water pool samples were contaminated with Naegleria or Acanthamoeba. Thus, amoebic contamination may present a serious threat to the health of humans who engage in leisure activities at thermal springs.
- Primary amebic meningoencephalitis in Florida: a case report and epidemiological review of Florida cases. [Journal Article, Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.]
- J Environ Health 2013 Apr; 75(8):26-31.
Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) is a rare but nearly always fatal infection of the central nervous system caused by the thermophilic, free-living ameba Naegleria fowleri. Since its first description in 1965 through 2010, 118 cases have been reported in the U.S.; all cases are related to environmental exposure to warm freshwater; most have occurred in children and adolescents and are associated with recreational water activities, such as swimming, diving, or playing in freshwater lakes, ponds, or rivers. Over one-fourth of all national PAM cases have occurred in Florida. The authors describe here a fatal case of PAM in a resident of northeast Florida and the ensuing environmental and public health investigation; they also provide a review of all cases of PAM in Florida from 1962 to 2010 and discuss public health responses to PAM in Florida, highlighting opportunities for positive collaboration between state and local environmental health specialists, epidemiologists, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- An unusual cause of encephalitis. [Journal Article]
- Adv NPs PAs 2013 Jan; 4(1):19-20.
- Prenatal education for congenital toxoplasmosis. [Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Review]
- Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2013.:CD006171.
Congenital toxoplasmosis is considered a rare but potentially severe infection. Prenatal education about congenital toxoplasmosis could be the most efficient and least harmful intervention, yet its effectiveness is uncertain.To assess the effects of prenatal education for preventing congenital toxoplasmosis.We searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group's Trials Register (15 January 2012), PubMed (1966 to 15 January 2012), EMBASE (1980 to 15 January 2012), CINAHL (1982 to 15 January 2012), LILACS (1982 to 15 January 2012), IMEMR (1984 to 15 January 2012), and reference lists of relevant papers, reviews and websites.Randomized and quasi-randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of all types of prenatal education on toxoplasmosis infection during pregnancy. Cluster-randomized trials were included.Two review authors independently assessed trials for inclusion and study quality. Two review authors extracted data. Data were checked for accuracy.Two cluster-randomized controlled trials (involving a total of 5455 women) met the inclusion criteria. The two included trials measured the effectiveness of the intervention in different ways which meant that meta-analysis of the results was not possible One trial (432 women enrolled) conducted in Canada was judged of low methodological quality. The authors did not report measure of association but only provided P values (P less than 0.05) for all outcomes. Moreover, losses to follow-up were high (34%, 147 out of 432 women initially enrolled). The authors concluded that prenatal education can effectively change pregnant women's behavior as it increased pet, personal and food hygiene. The second trial conducted in France was also judged of low methodological quality. Losses to follow-up were high (44.5%, 2233 out of 5023 women initially enrolled) and differential (40% in the intervention group and 52% in the control group). The authors concluded that prenatal education for congenital toxoplasmoses has a significant effect on improving women's knowledge whereas it has no effect on changing women's behavior. In this trial 17/3949 pregnant women seroconverted for toxoplasmosis: 13/2591 (0.5%) in the intervention group and 4/1358 (0.3%) in the control group. The number of events was too small to reach conclusions about the effect of prenatal education on seroconversion rate during pregnancy.No other randomized trials on the effect of prenatal education on congenital toxoplasmosis rate, or toxoplasmosis seroconversion rate during pregnancy were detected.Even though primary prevention of congenital toxoplasmosis is considered a desirable intervention, given the lack of related risks compared to secondary and tertiary prevention, its effectiveness has not been adequately evaluated. There is very little evidence from RCTs that prenatal education is effective in reducing congenital toxoplasmosis even though evidence from observational studies suggests it is. Given the lack of good evidence supporting prenatal education for congenital toxoplasmosis prevention, further RCTs are needed to confirm any potential benefits and to further quantify the impact of different sets of educational intervention.
- Fatal consequences of freshwater pearl diving. [Case Reports, Journal Article, Video-Audio Media]
- Lancet 2013 Jan 12; 381(9861):176.
- Photo Quiz. Primary amebic meningoencephalitis. [Case Reports, Journal Article]
- Clin Infect Dis 2012 Dec; 55(12):1677, 1737-8.
- Adverse neurological outcomes in Nigerian children with sickle cell disease. [Journal Article]
- Int J Hematol 2012 Dec; 96(6):710-8.
Sickle cell disease (SCD) is reported to be the most common genetic disorder affecting Nigerians. Children with SCD are at a high risk of neurological morbidity. The main objective of this study was to determine the pattern of adverse neurological outcomes among a cohort of Nigerian children with SCD. All children with SCD seen in the Department of Paediatrics, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria, over a period of 2 years were carefully evaluated for symptoms and signs of neurological complications, defined as clinical outcomes referable to the central nervous system. Of the 214 children evaluated, 187 were diagnosed with Hb SS disease and 27 with Hb SC disease. Neurological complications were identified in 78 (36.4 %) of the cases. The most common complications were headache (17.8 %), seizure (9.3 %) and stroke (8.4 %). Other less frequent complications included bacterial meningitis (2.8 %), spontaneous visual loss (1.4 %), paraplegia (0.9 %) and transient ischaemic attacks (0.9 %). Neurological complications occurred more frequently in children with sickle cell anaemia than in those with Hb SC disease (P = 0.002, 95 % CI 1.450-82.870). Adverse neurological events are common in Nigerian children with SCD, with a significantly higher risk in Hb SS than Hb SC disease. Stroke represents a major underlying cause of symptomatic epilepsy in SCD. Institution of primary preventive measures for stroke in SCD will significantly reduce the burden of stroke and epilepsy associated with SCD in Nigeria.
- [Prevention of mother-to-child transmission of toxoplasmosis: perspectives]. [English Abstract, Journal Article, Review]
- Gynecol Obstet Fertil 2012 Oct; 40(10):591-8.
In France, screening for toxoplasmosis is mandatory during pregnancy, whereas it is not performed in most other countries. The rationale for prenatal screening is to allow for several levels of intervention: primary prevention by health education; in case of seroconversion, prophylactic therapy; prenatal diagnosis using amniocentesis; the possibility of termination of pregnancy (TOP) in case of severe cerebral lesions at ultrasound; in most cases of fetal infection, antiparasitic therapy prenatally as well as postnatally. The French Health Authority (Haute Autorité de santé [HAS]) called into question the screening policy, but maintained it for 5 years pending randomized clinical trials. Recent data is available to answer some of the questions, but not the place of prenatal therapy. The sensitivity of prenatal diagnosis has progressed, while the place of TOP has decreased. The incidence of toxoplasmosis in the French population has fallen. Some studies have shown evidence in favor of prenatal therapy for infected fetuses. However, studies of prophylactic therapy are disappointing. These studies are purely observational and concern mostly spiramycine. For the first time, a multicenter randomized clinical trial of prevention of mother-to-child transmission of Toxoplasma gondii is underway (the TOXOGEST study). The HAS guidelines are that any suspected toxoplasmosis seroconversion should be confirmed in a reference laboratory, and that patients should be referred to expert centers without delay. It is not recommeded to start therapy before such expert consultation. The reference centers should provide counseling and access to prenatal diagnosis and therapy options.
- The immune response induced by DNA vaccine expressing nfa1 gene against Naegleria fowleri. [Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't]
- Parasitol Res 2012 Dec; 111(6):2377-84.
The pathogenic free-living amoeba, Naegleria fowleri, causes fatal primary amoebic meningoencephalitis in experimental animals and in humans. The nfa1 gene that was cloned from N. fowleri is located on pseudopodia, especially amoebic food cups and plays an important role in the pathogenesis of N. fowleri. In this study, we constructed and characterized retroviral vector and lentiviral vector systems for nfa1 DNA vaccination in mice. We constructed the retroviral vector (pQCXIN) and the lentiviral vector (pCDH) cloned with the egfp-nfa1 gene. The expression of nfa1 gene in Chinese hamster ovary cell and human primary nasal epithelial cell transfected with the pQCXIN/egfp-nfa1 vector or pCDH/egfp-nfa1 vector was observed by fluorescent microscopy and Western blotting analysis. Our viral vector systems effectively delivered the nfa1 gene to the target cells and expressed the Nfa1 protein within the target cells. To evaluate immune responses of nfa1-vaccinated mice, BALB/c mice were intranasally vaccinated with viral particles of each retro- or lentiviral vector expressing nfa1 gene. DNA vaccination using viral vectors expressing nfa1 significantly stimulated the production of Nfa1-specific IgG subclass, as well as IgG levels. In particular, both levels of IgG2a (Th1) and IgG1 (Th2) were significantly increased in mice vaccinated with viral vectors. These results show the nfa1-vaccination induce efficiently Th1 type, as well as Th2 type immune responses. This is the first report to construct viral vector systems and to evaluate immune responses as DNA vaccination in N. fowleri infection. Furthermore, these results suggest that nfal vaccination may be an effective method for treatment of N. fowleri infection.
- Primary amebic meningoencephalitis deaths associated with sinus irrigation using contaminated tap water. [Case Reports, Journal Article]
- Clin Infect Dis 2012 Nov; 55(9):e79-85.
Naegleria fowleri is a climate-sensitive, thermophilic ameba found in the environment, including warm, freshwater lakes and rivers. Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM), which is almost universally fatal, occurs when N. fowleri-containing water enters the nose, typically during swimming, and N. fowleri migrates to the brain via the olfactory nerve. In 2011, 2 adults died in Louisiana hospitals of infectious meningoencephalitis after brief illnesses.Clinical and environmental testing and case investigations were initiated to determine the cause of death and to identify the exposures.Both patients had diagnoses of PAM. Their only reported water exposures were tap water used for household activities, including regular sinus irrigation with neti pots. Water samples, tap swab samples, and neti pots were collected from both households and tested; N. fowleri were identified in water samples from both homes.These are the first reported PAM cases in the United States associated with the presence of N. fowleri in household plumbing served by treated municipal water supplies and the first reports of PAM potentially associated with the use of a nasal irrigation device. These cases occurred in the context of an expanding geographic range for PAM beyond southern tier states with recent case reports from Minnesota, Kansas, and Virginia. These infections introduce an additional consideration for physicians recommending nasal irrigation and demonstrate the importance of using appropriate water (distilled, boiled, filtered) for nasal irrigation. Furthermore, the changing epidemiology of PAM highlights the importance of raising awareness about this disease among physicians treating persons showing meningitislike symptoms.