ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0270.v1
Online: 20 December 2019 (07:31:14 CET)
Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is an alphavirus that causes febrile illness punctuated by severe polyarthralgia. After the emergence of CHIKV in the Western Hemisphere, multiple reports of congenital infections were published that documented neurological complications, cardiac defects, respiratory distress, and miscarriage. The Western Hemisphere is endemic to several alphaviruses and whether antigenic cross-reactivity can impact the course of infection has not been explored. Recent advances in biomedical engineering have produced cell co-culture models that replicate the cellular interface at the maternal fetal axis. We employed a trans-well assay to determine if cross-reactive antibodies affected the movement and replication of CHIKV across placental cells and into an embryoid body. The data show that antibodies to Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) significantly reduced CHIKV viral load in embryoid bodies. The data highlight that viral pathogenesis can be cell-specific and that exploiting antigenic cross-reactivity could be an avenue for reducing the impact of congenital CHIKV infections.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0390.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Zika; Yellow fever; cross reactive; flavivirus; congenital infection; enhancement
Online: 24 May 2020 (17:12:58 CEST)
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a flavivirus that originated in Africa but emerged in Latin America in 2015. In this region, other flaviviruses such as Dengue (DENV), West Nile, and Yellow Fever Virus (YFV) also circulate, allowing for possible antigenic cross-reactivity to impact viral infections and immune responses. Studies have found antibody mediated enhancement between DENV and ZIKV, but the impact of YFV antibodies on ZIKV infection has not been fully explored. ZIKV infections cause congenital syndromes, such as microcephaly, necessitating further research into ZIKV vertical transmission through the placental barrier. Recent advancements in biomedical engineering have generated co-culture methods that allow for in vitro recapitulation of the maternal: fetal interface. This study utilized a transwell assay, which is a co-culture model utilizing human placental syncytiotrophoblasts, fetal umbilical cells, and a differentiating embryoid body to replicate the maternal: fetal axis. To determine if cross reactive YFV vaccine antibodies impact the pathogenesis of ZIKV across the maternal fetal axis, maternal syncytiotrophoblasts were inoculated with ZIKV or ZIKV incubated with YFV vaccine anti-sera, and viral load was measured 72 hours post inoculation. The data show that the impact of YFV on ZIKV replication is cell line dependent. In differentiating embryoids, the presence of YFV antibodies enhanced ZIKV infection. Since viral pathogenesis, and the impact of antigenic cross-reactive antibodies, is cell line specific at the maternal-fetal axis, this suggests there may be discreet mechanisms that impact congenital ZIKV infections.
Subject: Life Sciences, Molecular Biology Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; companion animals; cross-infection
Online: 17 May 2020 (15:27:24 CEST)
Since the COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 break out in Wuhan China from Dec. 2019, it has spread to hundreds of countries up to now. Scientists from all over the world have paid tremendous efforts to research and try to control the disease. Previous studies suggested that some of the wild animals could be intermediate hosts between humans and origination of SARS-CoV-2, and some companion animals of humans can be infected by SARS-CoV-2, which raised our curiosity about cross-infection of SARS-CoV-2 between animals and humans. Thus, we select some kinds of animals that might have contact with humans to estimate the susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 in different animals by evolutionary analysis of their receptors for SARS-CoV-2. The results show that some companion animals of the Felidae family like the cat has a higher infection possibility while the species of the Rodent family like the rat and mouse having close contact with humans show an opposite result, which consist with recent animal experiments and researches. These should raise concerns about cross-infection between human and companion animals or animals having close contact with humans which might turn animals into depositaries of the coronavirus even after control of SARS-CoV-2 spreading and cause second or more waves of infections after social reopening. Another side of our results stands by the opinion that bioinformatic analysis can be consistent with experiments in some respects so that we can prevent unnecessary sacrifice of laboratory animals in future experiments.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0095.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Human cytomegalovirus; primary tree shrew dermis fibroblasts; cross-species infection; lytic replication.
Online: 5 November 2018 (09:43:16 CET)
As a universal pathogen leading to neonatal defects and transplant failure, Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) has strict species specificity that the inability to using this virus in animals has hampered its pathogenesis study. However, the mechanism of cross-species barrier remains elusive that no non-human cell model has been established to fill this knowledge gap. We observed that primary dermis fibroblasts (TSDF) isolated from the Chinese tree shrew (Tupaia belangeri chinensis), a small laboratory animal with close affinity to primates, were permissive to HCMV replication. In TSDF infected with GFP-expressing HCMV, the green fluorescence and cytopathic effect were observed and the expression of 3 kinetic genes and replication of viral genome were detected. The cell-free viruses produced in TSDF reached 103 pfu/mL at 96 hpi, which were 10-fold lower than in primary human foreskin fibroblasts. Our results demonstrated that TSDF supported low level of lytic replication of HCMV. The TSDF model provides a useful platform for the mechanism study of species barrier of HCMV.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0040.v3
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Dengue; COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; epidemiology; infection; mortality; cross-protection; Dengue vaccine; ELISA; Dengvaxia
Online: 5 May 2020 (03:00:34 CEST)
Global severity maps of ongoing dengue epidemic and COVID-19 pandemic do not overlap. Countries with high dengue endemicity (>1.5 million cases/year) are observably less hit by COVID-19 in terms of infection, transmission and mortality. Based on non-overlap of dengue and COVID-19 severity maps and evidence of SARS-CoV-2 serological cross-reactions with dengue, we wonder whether immediate immunization of susceptible populations in Europe, North America and Asia (China, Iran) with available live-attenuated dengue vaccines, will cue the anti-viral immune response to thwart COVID-19 (viral interference). Risk of developing post-vaccination “Antibody-dependent Enhancement” is low as dengue is not endemic in the aforesaid regions.
Subject: Keywords: COVID-19 infection; immunity; risk of COVID-19 infection; pandemics; outbreaks; voluntary infection
Online: 13 May 2020 (05:53:07 CEST)
Draconian defensive measures have been implemented to combat the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. These important measures constitute a vital current priority but do little to increase communal immunity and avoid future outbreaks. A longer-term exit strategy for a sustainable return to normalcy has yet to be identified. The development of vaccines or effective therapeutics could largely solve the problem, but their timely development cannot be guaranteed. In this setting, and under the expected societal isolation fatigue from extended social distancing, we here propose the idea that at some point after the outbreak’s peak, hospitals, in addition to providing care for infected people who need it, could also be involved in the development of a controlled exit strategy designed to avoid future outbreaks. We postulate that controlled voluntary deliberate infection in a hospital setting and under continuous and close medical observation may offer a safer alternative compared to random en-masse exposure. We discuss potential risks and benefits, highlighting the need for careful consideration of the associated critical ethical issues.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0544.v1
Online: 31 August 2022 (10:20:23 CEST)
We performed an epi and molecular characterization of two healthcare workers MPXV occupational infection. Five days after the sampling collection, nurses developed typical MPXV infection symptoms. Infection was confirmed by qPCR and whole genome sequencing. The most likely transmission route was through contact with fomites in the patient belonging/house.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0187.v2
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: human parechovirus; HPeV; PeV-A; Panama; gastrointestinal infection; respiratory infection
Online: 27 April 2022 (08:07:52 CEST)
Human Parechoviruses, officially known as Parechovirus A (PeV-A), is associated with mild gastrointestinal and respiratory illness in young children, however, they may also give rise to Central Nervous System (CNS) infections and neonatal sepsis. While studies have delved into the detection of PeV-A in different populations, the detection of PeV-A in Hispanic populations in Latin American countries is not well-known. The aim of this study was to determine the presence of PeV-A in respiratory, gastrointestinal, and neurological clinical samples of pediatric patients in Panama. Two hundred samples of pediatric patients with a negative diagnosis for the main respiratory viruses, rotavirus and neurological viruses such as herpesvirus, enterovirus and cytomegalovirus, collected between 2014 and 2015, were analyzed by real-time RT-PCR. Eight positive PeV-A infections were detected, 2 in respiratory samples, 5 in stool samples and one detected in cerebrospinal fluid. This is the fisrt report of PeV-A in Panamá.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0248.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Immunology Keywords: probiotic; upper respiratory tract infection (URTI); infection; prevention; common cold
Online: 21 June 2020 (10:07:31 CEST)
Background: Probiotics can provide health benefits to an individual by regulation of the immune system. Many clinical trials have found that probiotics can prevent upper respiratory tracts infections. Aim: To perform a systematic review and meta-analysis of available trials to investigate the effectiveness of probiotics in the prevention of upper respiratory tract infections in individuals of all ages. Conclusion: Probiotics were found to be better in reducing the number of participants who experienced acute URTI, the average duration per episode of acute URTI, use of antibiotics in URTI related cases and absence due to URTI. Side effects were found to be minor, making probiotics a good candidate for clinical use. This shows that probiotics are effective in preventing acute URTIs. However, due to limited studies and small sample size, the results are subjected to bias and should be interpreted with care.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0474.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: prenatal infection; virome; viral antibody; VirScan; ViroCap; maternal viral infection; viral protein; GBV-C; placenta; fetal viral infection
Online: 29 August 2022 (08:07:37 CEST)
Human pegivirus (HPgV) is best known for persistent, presumably non-pathogenic, infection and a propensity to co-infect with human immunodeficiency virus or hepatitis C virus. However, unique at-tributes, such as the increased risk of malignancy or immune modulation, have been recently recognized for HPgV. We have identified a unique case of a woman with high levels HPgV infection in two preg-nancies, which occurred 4 years apart, without evidence of human immunodeficiency virus or hepatitis C virus infection. The second pregnancy was complicated by congenital heart disease. A high level of HPgV infection was detected in maternal blood from different trimesters by RT-PCR and identified as HPgV type 1 genotype 2 in both pregnancies. In the second pregnancy, the decidua and intervillous tissue of the placenta were positive for HPgV by PCR but not the chorion or cord blood (from both pregnancies), suggesting no vertical transmission despite high levels of viremia. The HPgV genome sequence was remarkably conserved over the 4 years. Using VirScan, sera antibodies for HPgV were detected in the first trimester of both pregnancies. We observed the same anti-HPgV antibodies against the non-structural NS5 protein in both pregnancies, suggesting a similar non-E2 protein humoral immune response over time. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of persistent HPgV infection involving placental tissues with no evidence of vertical transmission. Our results reveal a more elaborate viral-host interaction than previously reported, expand our knowledge about tropism, and opens avenues for exploring the replication sites of this virus.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0475.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: catheter-associated infection; CAUTI; urinary tract infection; healthcare-associated infection; active drain line clearance; burns; intra-abdominal pressure; measurement
Online: 30 September 2022 (04:13:24 CEST)
OBJECTIVE A quality improvement study to assess catheter-associated urinary tract infection (CAUTI) rate post-implementation of a bladder catheter with integrated active drain line urine clearance and automated intra-abdominal pressure monitoring in a burn intensive care unit (ICU). DESIGN Eight-year retrospective before and after study (2015–2022). SETTING A single American Burn Association verified Burn Center with fourteen inpatient beds. PATIENTS Patients meeting criteria for admission to a Burn Center METHODS Retrospective cohort study following the implementation of a novel urine output monitoring system with integrated drain line and urine clearance. Data from a 48-month (from January 2015-December 2018) historical control (period 1) were compared to data from a 28-month (from January 2020 to April 2022) post-implementation period (period 2). Pre- and post-implementation CAUTI event incidences were compared. Charts were reviewed to characterize the patients. RESULTS A total of 42 CAUTIs in 2243 patients were identified using the National Health and Safety Network (NHSN) definition during the analyzed period. There were 40 CAUTI events in period 1 and two CAUTIs in period 2. The incidence of CAUTI events pre-implementation was 0.030 (mean of 10 CAUTI events per year) compared to 0.002 (mean of 1 CAUTI event per year) post-implementation of an automatic drain line clearing UO monitoring system showing a significant reduction in CAUTI events (P<0.01, risk ratio novel vs. gravity bladder catheter 0.071, 95% confidence interval: 0.017-0.294). CONCLUSIONS CAUTIs were reduced in the period following the implementation of a novel urinary catheter system with an integrated active drain line and urine clearance in burn patients.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201705.0176.v1
Online: 24 May 2017 (08:48:15 CEST)
Micronutrient homeostasis is a key factor in maintaining a healthy immune system. Zinc is an essential micronutrient that is involved in the regulation of the innate and adaptive immune responses. The main cause of zinc deficiency is malnutrition. Zinc deficiency leads to cell-mediated immune dysfunctions among other manifestations. Consequently, such dysfunctions lead to a worse outcome in the response towards bacterial infection and sepsis. For instance, zinc is an essential component of the pathogen-eliminating signal transduction pathways leading to neutrophil extracellular traps formation, as well as inducing cell-mediated immunity over humoral immunity by regulating specific factors or differentiation. Additionally, zinc deficiency plays a role in inflammation, mainly elevating inflammatory response as well as damage to host tissue. Zinc is involved in the modulation of the proinflammatory response by targeting Nuclear Factor Kappa B, a transcription factor that is the master regulator of proinflammatory responses. It is also involved in controlling oxidative stress and regulating inflammatory cytokines. Zinc plays an intricate function during an immune response and its homeostasis is critical for sustaining proper immune function. This review will summarize the latest findings concerning the role of this micronutrient during the course of infections and inflammatory response and how the immune system modulates zinc depending on different stimuli.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0091.v1
Online: 8 July 2019 (08:16:23 CEST)
Texture has long been considered an important attribute for food acceptance. However, which specific textural characteristics contribute to overall acceptance of a food is not well understood. It has been suggested that texture contrasts and combinations are a universal feature in giving foods a desirable texture, yet this notion is largely based upon anecdotal data. This study uses multiple survey research methods to assess the importance of texture contrast and combinations across cultures (Poland, U.S.A., and Singapore). Participants (n = 288) completed a survey that included overt measures of food texture contrast importance as well as free response questions regarding texture. The overall importance of texture for food liking was not different across the populations. However, the participants from Singapore and Poland gave more importance to a desirable food having multiple textures than the U.S.A. cohort. When looking at free responses, participants were twice as likely to mention combinations (multiple textures) with a texture contrast when describing foods they liked, in comparison to foods they disliked. This was observed across all 3 cultures. However, the type and quantity of texture terms used within combinations were different among cultures. For instance, Asians enjoyed more texturally diverse food combinations than the other two cultures. These findings highlight the importance of texture contrasts and combinations in three distinct cultures.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201703.0061.v1
Online: 13 March 2017 (08:31:22 CET)
This paper presents a novel CNN-based architecture, referred to as Q-Net, to learn local feature descriptors that are useful for matching image patches from two different spectral bands. Given correctly matched and non-matching cross-spectral image pairs, a quadruplet network is trained to map input image patches to a common Euclidean space, regardless of the input spectral band. Our approach is inspired by the recent success of triplet networks in the visible spectrum, but adapted for cross-spectral scenarios, where for each matching pair there are always two possible non-matching patches; one for each spectrum. Experimental evaluations on a public cross-spectral VIS-NIR dataset shows that the proposed approach improves the state-of-the-art. Moreover, the proposed technique can also be used in mono-spectral settings, obtaining a similar performance to triplet network descriptors, but requiring less training data.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202110.0104.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Ophthalmology Keywords: Candida; Corneal infection; Corneal ulcer; Contact lens; Fungal infection; Fusarium; Infectious keratitis; Keratoplasty
Online: 6 October 2021 (10:45:42 CEST)
Fungal keratitis (FK) is a serious ocular infection that often poses significant diagnostic and therapeutic dilemmas. This study aimed to examine the causes, clinical characteristics, outcomes, and prognostic factors of FK in the UK. All culture-positive and culture-negative presumed FK (with complete data) that presented to Queen’s Medical Centre, Nottingham, and Queen Victoria Hospital, East Grinstead, between 2011 and 2020 were included. A total of 117 patients (n=117 eyes) with FK were included in this study. The mean age was 59.0±19.6 years (range, 4-92 years) and 51.3% patients were female. Fifty-three fungal isolates were identified from 52 (44.4%) culture-positive cases, with Candida spp. (33, 62.3%), Fusarium spp. (9, 17.0%), and Aspergillus spp. (5, 9.4%) being the most common organisms. Ocular surface disease (60, 51.3%), prior corneal surgery (44, 37.6%), and systemic immunosuppression (42, 35.9%) were the three most common risk factors. Hospitalisation for intensive treatment was required for 95 (81.2%) patients, with a duration of 18.9±16.3 days. Sixty-six (56.4%) patients required additional surgical interventions for eradicating the infection. Emergency therapeutic/tectonic keratoplasty was performed in 29 (24.8%) cases, though 13 (44.8%) of them failed at final follow-up. The final corrected-distance-visual-acuity (CDVA) was 1.67±1.08 logMAR. Multivariable logistic regression analyses demonstrated increased age, large infiltrate size (>3mm), and poor presenting CDVA (<1.0 logMAR) as significant negative predictive factors for poor visual outcome (CDVA of <1.0 logMAR) and poor corneal healing (>60 days of healing time or occurrence of corneal perforation requiring emergency keratoplasty; all p<0.05). In conclusion, FK represents a difficult-to-treat ocular infection that often results in poor visual outcome, with a high need for surgical interventions. Innovative treatment strategies are urgently required to tackle this unmet need.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0512.v1
Subject: Engineering, Mechanical Engineering Keywords: Contact Mechanics; Cross-Country Skiing; Cross-Country Ski; Load Conditions; Ski-Camber Profile; Sports Equipment
Online: 31 August 2022 (02:26:22 CEST)
In cross-country skiing the time difference between a race winner and the person coming second is typically very small. Since much of the energy is spent on overcoming resistive forces, a relatively small reduction of these can have a significant impact on the results. The resistive forces come partly from the friction in the tribological interface, between the ski and the snow, and as with many tribological applications the characterisation of its origin, plays an important role in determining the frictional properties. Also in cross-country ski friction, there are several scales impacting the frictional performance, with the major contributors being the ski-camber profile and ski-base structure. Macro-scale measurements of the ski's camber profile under load, are often used to determine how adequate the ski is for a specific condition. The characteristic properties usually obtained are, the force required to collapse the ski to a certain camber height, the topography of the kick-wax zone, and by simple means a determined lengths of the frictional interface, i.e., the apparent contact length. To this date, there are some mathematical models, but there is no robust way of determining the macro-scale contact properties between a cross-country ski and a counter surface using simulations. In the present paper an Artificial neural networks (ANN) is trained to predict the ski-camber profile for various loads placed at different positions, and a well established deterministic approach is used to simulate the contact between the ANN-predicted ski-camber profile and a linearly elastic body with a flat surface, representing the snow. The results suggest that this method is feasible for the determination of the apparent contact characteristics of different skis. Moreover, we show that the apparent contact area does not linearly depend on the load, and that the elastic properties of the counter surface also has a large impact on the apparent contact area and the average apparent contact pressure.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0056.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: syphilis; Treponema pallidum; congenital infection
Online: 5 October 2020 (08:28:04 CEST)
Congenital syphilis still represents a worldwide public health problem. If left untreated, can lead to fetal demise and high neonatal morbidity and mortality. Unfortunately, in the last decade there has been a resurgence of cases in the US. This review discusses the ongoing problem of this preventable congenital infection, vertical transmission and clinical manifestations while providing a guidance for the evaluation and management of infants born to mothers with reactive serologic tests for syphilis
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0201.v1
Online: 10 July 2020 (01:57:16 CEST)
The outbreak of coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) has infected more than 11 million people and has claimed more than 530.000 deaths world-wide. In July 2020, still, there is no specific treatment for disease caused by the novel coronavirus. In the search to curb the global pandemic COVID-19, some eastern and developing countries have approved various treatment with controversial efficacy, among that the use of the antimalarial Hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), so far with inconclusive clinical evidence of effectiveness. On the other hand, computer-based screening suggest that HCQs analog are promising molecules, to impair viral replication in vitro. Therefore, what is emerging from this complex background, is the need to understand molecular mechanism beyond drugs that can be helpful against viral infection for this and future pandemic. The intent of this Brief Report is to highlight: i) the involvement of the Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) cascade in viral infection and ii) the urgent need to have molecular data on the effectiveness of the combination of MAPK inhibitors together with HCQ and HCQs analogs in curbing viral infection. We are convinced that a better understanding of the patterns of elicited molecular mechanisms will be critical for new molecular approaches to this severe disease
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0361.v1
Online: 23 May 2020 (05:40:26 CEST)
Italy suffered heavily with the new pandemic crisis caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Given the low number of tests performed on the early stages of the outbreak, Italy lost track of most of infections. We use a modified SEIR model to reconstruct the most realistic infection curve using the hospitalization curve of the registered data. Using this method we estimated that, by the end of the first infection wave, about 3-4% of the population will have been infected by the virus. Following the same process, the number of deaths is projected to be between 100000 to 115000. We also find a significant correlation between the number of tests performed, the fraction of undocumented infections and the rate of change dI/dt of the real infection curve. We conclude that herd immunity is not enough to contain further spread of the disease inside the country.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202004.0438.v1
Online: 24 April 2020 (10:53:36 CEST)
COVID-19 breakout in Italy has caused a huge number of severely ill patients with a serious increase in mortality. Although lungs seem to be the main target of the infection very few information are available about liver involvement in COVID-19 infection, that could possibly evocate a systemic disease targeting a lot of organs. Since now there are no reports of large series of histological evaluation of liver morphology in this setting. Knowledge of histological liver findings connected to clinical data is crucial in management of this disease.Post-mortem wedge liver biopsies from 48 patients died for COVID-19 infection were available from two main hospitals located in northern Italy, Lombardy; all sample were obtained during autopsies. No patient has a significant clinical complain of liver disease or signs of liver failure before and during hospitalization; for each of them laboratory data focused on liver were available. All liver samples showed minimal inflammation features; on the other side, many histological pictures compatible with vascular alterations were observed, characterized by portal vein braches number increase associated with lumen massive dilatation, partial or complete recent luminal thrombosis of portal and sinusoidal vessels, fibrosis of portal tract, focally severely enlarged and fibrotic. Our preliminary results concerning histological liver involvement in COVID-19 infection confirm the clinical impression that liver failure is not a main concern and this organ is not the target of significant inflammatory damage; histopatological findings are highly suggestive for marked alteration of intrahepatic blood vessel network secondary to systemic alterations induced by virus that could target, besides lung parenchyma, cardiovascular system, coagulation cascade or endothelial layer of blood vessels.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202212.0384.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Zika virus; field mosquito population; vector competence; transmission efficiency; infection rate; disseminated infection rate
Online: 21 December 2022 (04:12:17 CET)
Zika virus (ZIKV) is transmitted to humans by the infectious bite of mosquitoes like Aedes aegypti. After a viremic blood meal, the virus must infect the midgut, disseminate to tissues, and reach the salivary gland to be transmitted to a vertebrate host. Many factors influence the mosquito’s ability to become infected and transmit viruses, such as the mosquito’s genetic diversity, intrinsic antiviral barriers, and midgut microbiota. This study evaluated the patterns of ZIKV infection in Ae. aegypti field populations of a city. The infection rate, disseminated infection rate, viral transmission rate, and transmission efficiency were measured by quantitative PCR at 14 days post-infection. The results showed that all Ae. aegypti populations had individuals susceptible to ZIKV infection and able to transmit the virus. The infection parameters showed the city’s geographical area of origin of the Ae. aegypti influences their vector competence for ZIKV transmission.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0058.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: Needlestick and other sharp injuries; hospital-acquired infection; biological hazards; infection control; occupational hazards
Online: 3 March 2022 (08:13:53 CET)
Needlestick and other sharp injuries (NSIs) are critical occupational hazard for healthcare workers. Exposure to blood and body fluids through NSIs increases the risk of transmission of blood-borne pathogens among them. The objectives of this study were to estimate the one-year incidence of NSIs and investigate its associated factors among the healthcare workers in Saudi Arabia. A cross-sectional online survey was conducted between October and November 2021. A total of 361 healthcare workers participated in the survey from all over Saudi Arabia. The one-year incidence of NSIs among healthcare workers is estimated at 22.2%. More than half of the injury event (53.8%) was not reported to the authority by the healthcare worker. Incidence of NSIs was highest among the physicians (36%) and is followed by nurses (34.8%), dentists (29.2%), and medical technologists (21.1%). The likelihood of injury is higher (OR: 2.51; 95% CI: 1.04, 6.03) among the works aged 26 – 30 years compared to the 20 – 25 years age group and the workers directly deal with needles or other sharp objects while working (OR: 5.90; 2.69, 12.97). The high incidence rate of injury and low reporting rate highlight the needs of an education program targeting healthcare providers with higher risk.
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dentistry Keywords: odontogenic infection; dental abscess; head and neck infection; dental epidemiology; racial discrepancy; gender discrepancy
Online: 2 November 2020 (10:33:47 CET)
Odontogenic infections are infections of the orofacial structures arising from dental disease. Despite its preventability, it exerts a significant burden on healthcare infrastructure worldwide. Our study explored the various different microbiological, social, and epidemiological characteristics of 103 cases of odontogenic infections at our regional center which demonstrated specific predilections for the young and middle-aged, those with diabetes mellitus, African American/Black and Hispanic ethnicities, posterior teeth, left-sided dentition, and male gender. However, nuances and exceptions to these trends were also seen with specific groups that may complicate treatment.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0027.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Keywords: cross-disciplinary; AI; blockchain; investment; protection
Online: 5 October 2022 (04:04:40 CEST)
This article presents the results of a cross-disciplinary applied study exploring investors’ protections in the context of distributed ledger technology (DLT) smart contracts. Fusing legal, business, and technical perspectives, we developed a framework for protection from non-commercial risks for stablecoins, taking advantage of DLT and AI. A key concept we propose is the monitoring of disinformation and fake news to prevent malicious parties from abusing our solution. Based on the similarities between central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and stablecoins, we propose scaling up our results to all future internet investments performed without face-to-face contact between the investor and the company.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0063.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Algebra & Number Theory Keywords: XSS; Cross site scripting; Sql injection
Online: 2 December 2020 (13:04:51 CET)
The danger is still very large from cross site scripting attacks. When designing web applications We must follow as much as we can prevention rules and don’t leave any loophole to our programs. Experience is a great factor for programmers to know these attacks and for a trainee programmer is a difficult task to spot all the weak points. In this article we present a tutorial on launching an XSS attack and also we propose simple solutions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0092.v1
Subject: Earth Sciences, Oceanography Keywords: synthetic aperture radar; cross-polarization; denoise
Online: 7 June 2020 (14:58:06 CEST)
Sentinel-1 (S1) extra-wide (EW) swath data in cross-polarization (horizontal-vertical, HV or vertical-horizontal, VH) are strongly affected by the scalloping effect and thermal noise, particularly over areas with weak backscattered signals, such as sea surfaces. Although noise vectors in both the azimuth and range directions are provided in the standard S1 EW data for subtraction, the residual thermal noise still significantly affects sea ice detection by the EW data. In this paper, we improve the denoising method developed in previous studies to remove the additive noise for the S1 EW data in cross-polarization. Furthermore, we propose a new method for eliminating the residual noise (i.e. multiplicative noise) at the sub-swath boundaries of the EW data, which cannot be well processed by simply subtracting the reconstructed 2-D noise field. The proposed method of removing both the additive and multiplicative noise was applied to EW HV-polarized images processed using different Instrument Processing Facility (IPF) versions. The results suggest that the proposed algorithm significantly improves the quality of EW HV-polarized images under various sea ice conditions and sea states in marginal ice zone (MIZ) of the Arctic. This is of great support for the utilization of cross-polarization SAR images in wide swaths for intensive sea ice monitoring in polar regions.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0082.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: Trypanosomosis, adaptive immunity, parasitemia control, infection
Online: 6 May 2021 (12:53:49 CEST)
Salivarian trypanosomes are extracellular parasites affecting humans, livestock and game animals. Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense and Trypanosoma brucei gambiense are human infective sub-species of T. brucei causing Human African Trypanosomosis (HAT - sleeping sickness). The related T. b. brucei parasite lacks the resistance to survive in human serum, and only inflicts animal infections. Animal Trypanosomosis (AT) is not restricted to Africa, but is present on all continents. T. congolense and T. vivax are the most widespread pathogenic trypanosomes in sub-Sahara Africa. Trough mechanical transmission, T. vivax has however been introduced into South America. T. evansi is a unique animal trypanosome that is found in vast territories around the world and can cause atypical Human Trypanosomosis (aHT). All salivarian trypanosomes are well adapted to survival inside the host’s immune system. This is not a hostile environment for these parasite, but this is the place where they thrive. Here we provide an overview of the latest insights into the host-parasite interaction and the unique survival strategies allowing trypanosomes to outsmart the immune system. In addition, we review new developments in treatment and diagnosis as well the issues that have hampered the development of field-applicable anti-trypanosome vaccines for the implementation of sustainable disease control.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0182.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: candida; bloodstream infection; pediatric; neonatal; antifungal
Online: 8 December 2020 (07:47:24 CET)
Background. Candida bloodstream infections (CBSIs) have decreased among pediatric populations in the United States, but remain an important cause of morbidity and mortality. Species distributions and susceptibility patterns of CBSI isolates diverge widely between children and adults. Awareness of these patterns can inform clinical decision-making for empiric or pre-emptive therapy of children at risk for candidemia. Methods. CBSIs occurring from 2006-2016 among patients in a large children’s hospital were analyzed for age specific trends in incidence rate, risk factors for breakthrough-CBSI and death, as well as underlying conditions. Candida species distributions and susceptibility patterns were evaluated in addition to antifungal agent use. Results. The overall incidence rate of CBSI among this complex patient population was 1.97/1,000 patient-days. About half of CBSI episodes occurred in immunocompetent children and 14% in Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) patients. Antifungal resistance was minimal: 96.7% of isolates were fluconazole-, 99% were micafungin-, and all were amphotericin susceptible. Liposomal amphotericin was the most commonly prescribed antifungal agent including for NICU patients. Overall CBSI-associated mortality was 13.7%; there were no deaths associated with CBSI among NICU patients after 2011. Conclusions. Pediatric CBSI characteristics differ substantially from those in adults. Improved management of underlying diseases and antimicrobial stewardship may further decrease morbidity and mortality from CBSI while continuing to maintain low resistance rates among Candida isolates.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0370.v1
Online: 23 May 2020 (10:25:16 CEST)
This article explores the knowledge about preventions, perceptions of infections, and the responsive actions to the Covid-19 situation of the young age groups residing in Bangladesh. Quantitative data were collected online using an MCQ questionnaire from around 932 participants. Results show the population is generally aware of the symptoms, keeping social distance by staying home and are concerned about re-spreading after the lock-down period. However, they are quite unsure about the possible medicines frequently talked about in the media and the necessity of avoiding animal protein.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0451.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Obstetrics & Gynaecology Keywords: gynaecology; gynecology infection; safety; polypectomy; biopsy
Online: 9 April 2020 (10:01:17 CEST)
The potential for transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus during minimally invasive gynaecological procedures, such as hysteroscopy or laparoscopy, on the reproductive tract of patients with COVID-19 is not known. We examined existing data for prevalence of virus in the reproductive tract and other bodily fluids.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0671.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: Cross-Boundary Spatial Planning Systems and Practices
Online: 28 June 2021 (14:51:05 CEST)
This research has critically argued that a vigilant combination of flexibility and certainty in spatial planning can bring about the most optimum planning outcomes. Therefore, to reproachfully evaluate the core argument, this research has tried to empirically respond to the research question of which balance of government intervention and market freedom produces the optimal economic, social and spatial outcomes. This research question has been further translated into an associated central hypothesis i.e., a hybrid planning system with an optimal balance between discretionary and regulatory planning approach can bring about the desired economic, social, and spatial outcomes.
Online: 3 May 2020 (08:24:36 CEST)
Registry and survey data gave an opportunity to compare possible roles of social attitudes and social values in control and limit the COVID-19 pandemic. We analysed social values and time series of daily R0 (reproduction rate) estimates for 27 European countries. Embedded and affective autonomy are significantly negatively associated (p-Value<0.05) with controlled R0. It could mean that well interconnected societies with high attention to maximize utilities are more likely to couple with COVID-19. Hierarchy is significantly positively associated (p-Value<0.05) with controlled R0. Thus, hierarchical structures could inhibits control of COVID-19. The results emphasize the need to pay more attention to social values context in evaluating the effectiveness of mitigation strategies internationally.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201810.0466.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Economics Keywords: capital structure; leverage; SMEs; cross-regional variation
Online: 22 October 2018 (05:11:16 CEST)
There is tremendous interest, in the economic literature, for the determinants of firms’ capital structure decisions. A rich body of empirical works now exists that purports to identify firm- and country-level factors affecting firms’ financing patterns. In addition, more recently, a new stream of studies has emerged that investigates cross-regional variation in small firms’ capital structure. While small firms’ leverage does seem to vary across regions, at least in countries where significant regional differences in economic and financial development and in the quality of institutions exist, not much yet is known about variation in debt maturity, in debt in relation to equity, and between different types of small firms. The present paper aims to fill this gap through an empirical analysis of cross-regional variation in the capital structure of a sample of about 30,000 Italian small firms over a 13-year period, including the aftermath of the credit crunch that followed the 2007-8 global financial crisis. The findings confirm the view that small firms in underdeveloped regions are more financially constrained, but also amend some of the results shown in the literature, in particular by showing how small firms in Italy’s Southern regions have higher levels of equity and fixed assets than small firms in other regions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202212.0326.v1
Online: 19 December 2022 (06:47:56 CET)
Liposome-mediated delivery is a possible means to overcome several shortcomings with C. elegans as a model for identifying and testing drugs that retard aging. These include interactions between drugs and the nematodes’ bacterial food source, and failure of drugs to be taken up into nematode tissues. To explore this, we have tested liposome-mediated delivery of a range of fluorescent dyes and drugs in C. elegans. Liposome encapsulation led to enhanced effects on lifespan, using smaller quantities of compound, and enhanced uptake of three dyes into the gut lumen. However, one dye (Texas red) did not cross into nematode tissues, indicating that liposomes cannot ensure uptake of any compound. Of six compounds previously reported to extend lifespan (vitamin C, N-acetylcysteine, glutathione (GSH), trimethadione, thioflavin T (ThT) and rapamycin), this effect was reproduced for the latter four in a condition-dependent manner. For GSH and ThT, antibiotics abrogated life extension, implying a bacterially-mediated effect. With GSH, this was attributable to reduced early death from pharyngeal infection, and associated with alterations of mitochondrial morphology in a manner suggesting a possible innate immune training effect. By contrast, ThT exhibited antibiotic effects. For rapamycin, significant increases in lifespan were only seen when bacterial proliferation was prevented. These results document the utility and limitations of liposome-mediated drug delivery for C. elegans. They also show how nematode-bacteria interactions can determine the effects of compounds on C. elegans lifespan in a variety of ways.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0133.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dermatology Keywords: skin infection; antibiotics; quinolone; S. aureus; geriatrics
Online: 8 November 2022 (01:57:03 CET)
INTRODUCTION: Superficial cutaneous bacterial infections have a high incidence in geriatric patients. The most implicated pathogens are gram-positive cocci (Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes) while gram-negative germs are also implicated. Resistances to common topical antibiotics (mupirocin, fusidic acid) require alternatives to gram-positive and gram-negative microorganisms.Ozenoxacin cream for topical use (non-fluorinated bactericidal quinolone), in other countries and with other galenics, is indicated in children older than 6 months and in adults as a treatment of superficial bacterial infections, such as acne. In Spain, ozenoxacin cream is indicated only for non-bullous impetigo; scientific evidence show effectiveness also in other superficial skin bacterial infections.A cases series of clinical use of ozenoxacin in bacterial superficial skin infections in geriatric patients (institutionalized or community dwelling) is presented.METHODS: Multicenter case series (March-August 2022) of bacterial superficial skin infections treated with ozenoxacin cream (10mg/g every 12h, 5days); data from medical records (controls: 1-3-5 days), after obtaining informed consent (use of data and images).RESULTS: Series of 28 patients (mean age: 84,79) from nine nursing homes and one outpatient geriatric service, including acute and subacute/chronic cases.In all cases treatment was ozenoxacin 10mg/g topical cream applied every 12 hours for 5 days according to medical prescription (except for one case in which 3 days were enough for complete healing and another case treated for 10 days).Results showed complete healing in all 20 acute cases and significant clinical improvement in all subacute/chronic cases (with complete healing in one of them). Professionals scored the effectiveness in acute cases as a mean 4.5 points (maximum score: 5, p<.0001) and in subacute/chronic cases as 3.8 points (p=.010).There was no skin irritation or other adverse effects in anyone of the patients, and clinical improvement of pain, itching and other symptoms was observed, suggesting an anti-inflammatory effect. DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: Our results seem to demonstrate the effectiveness and tolerability of ozenozacin cream in bacterial infections other than non-bullous impetigo. Ozenoxacin cream is indicated only for the treatment of non-bullous impetigo; however, it is also shown to be effective, both in the scientific evidence and in our case series, for other superficial bacterial skin infections, both acute and subacute/chronic, suggesting the opportunity for clinical studies with an experimental design to evaluate the findings of clinical practice and to be able to have a therapeutic alternative to compensate for the complications of the appearance of resistance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0264.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: Secretory leucoprotease inhibitor; SLPI; inflammation; infection; Pseudomonas
Online: 19 October 2022 (03:59:12 CEST)
Secretory leucoprotease inhibitor (SLPI) has multifaceted functions, including inhibition of protease activity, antimicrobial functions, and anti-inflammatory properties. In this study, we show that SLPI plays a role in controlling pulmonary P. aeruginosa infection. Mice lacking SLPI were highly susceptible to P. aeruginosa infection, however had no difference in bacterial burden. Utilising a model of P. aeruginosa LPS-induced lung inflammation, human recombinant SLPI (hrSLPI) administered intraperitoneally suppressed the recruitment of inflammatory cells in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and resulted in reduced BALF and serum levels of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. This anti-inflammatory effect of hrSLPI was similarly demonstrated in a systemic inflammation model induced by intraperitoneal injection of LPS from various bacteria or lipoteichoic acid, highlighting the broad anti-inflammatory properties of hrSLPI. Moreover, in bone-marrow-derived macrophages, hrSLPI reduced LPS-induced phosphorylation of p-IkB-α, p-IKK-α/β, p-P38, demonstrating that the anti-inflammatory effect of hrSLPI was due to the inhibition of the NFB and MAPK pathways. In conclusion, administration of hrSLPI attenuates excessive inflammatory responses and is therefore, a promising strategy to target inflammatory diseases such as acute respiratory distress syndrome or sepsis and could potentially be used to augment antibiotic treatment.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0256.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Microbiology Keywords: Zika virus; intravaginal infection; superchallenge; neutralizing antibody
Online: 18 October 2022 (07:45:22 CEST)
Zika virus (ZIKV) outbreaks in Central and South America caused severe public health problems in 2015 and 2016. These outbreaks were finally contained through several methods, including mosquito control using insecticides and repellents. Additionally, the development of herd immunity in these countries might have contributed to containing the epidemic. While ZIKV is mainly transmitted by mosquito bites, mucosal transmission via bodily fluids, including the semen of infected individuals, has also been reported. We evaluated the effect of mucosal ZIKV infection on continuous subcutaneous challenges in a cynomolgus monkey model. Repeated intravaginal inoculations of ZIKV did not induce detectable viremia or clinical symptoms, and all animals developed a potent neutralizing antibody, protecting animals from the subsequent subcutaneous superchallenge. These results suggest that viral replication at mucosal sites can induce protective immunity without causing systemic viremia or symptoms.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202207.0341.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Hepatitis B Virus; Chronic Hepatitis infection; Oncogenesis
Online: 22 July 2022 (13:18:26 CEST)
Chronic Hepatitis B (CHB) Virus infection is major etiological factor for liver cirrhosis and/ or liver cancer. The viral protein, major contributor in predisposition of chronicity and Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) is Hepatitis B x (HBx) protein. Its dynamic subcellular distribution to an extent determines its multifactorial role. It is a regulatory protein which modulates viral as well as host machinery in favours to HBV persistence. An insight on HBx stabilising factors is critical for therapeutic purpose. The precise role of HBx in the pathogenesis of Chronicity of HBV is not known. Summary: This review comprehensively summarizing different mechanisms and their regulation by HBx protein with respect to chronicity and HCC emphasising viral persistence. Key Messages 1. HBx is a key protein for viral persistence. 2. Dynamic subcellular distribution of HBx determines its function. 3. HBx modulates cellular machinery to favours HBV survival. 4. HBx affects various intermediary mechanisms contributing to disease progression. 5. HBx may be a potent target to prevent the disease progression towards HCC.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0364.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: Diabetic foot infection; Sonication Method; Microbiological diagnosis.
Online: 24 November 2021 (11:51:36 CET)
We hypothesized that biofilm production occurs on stainless steel when incubated with tissue specimens in thioglycolate broth media (TBM). In a diabetic foot infection (DFI) cohort, applying the Kirschner wire and conventional methods were more sensitive than applying only the latter (CI 90%; 0.167 versus 0.375).
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0474.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus infection; inequalities; socioeconomic factors.
Online: 20 May 2021 (10:21:34 CEST)
Background: The aim of our study was to analyze the effect of socioeconomic inequalities, both at the individual and area of residence levels, on the probability of COVID-19 confirmed infection, and its variations across three pandemic waves. Methods: Retrospective cohort study. We included data from all individuals tested by COVID-19 during the three waves of the pandemic, from March to December 2020 (357,989 individuals). We studied the effect of inequalities on the risk of having a COVID-19 confirmed diagnosis after being tested using multilevel analyses with two levels of aggregation: individuals and basic healthcare area (BHA) of residence (deprivation level and type of zone). Results: Patient profile changed through the pandemic, with a predominance of low-paid employees living in deprived BHA. Workers with low salaries, unemployed and people on minimum integration income or who no longer receive the unemployment allowance, had a higher probability of COVID-19 infection than workers with salaries ≥€18,000 per year. Inequalities were higher in women and in the second wave. The deprivation level of BHA of residence influenced the risk of COVID-19 infection, especially in the second wave. Conclusions: There are inequalities in the risk of COVID-19 confirmed infection, both at individual and area level. It is necessary to develop individual and area coordinated measures in the control, diagnosis and treatment of the epidemic, in order to avoid an increase in the already existing inequalities.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0122.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Veterinary Medicine Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; canine; gastrointestinal; infection; virus
Online: 5 April 2021 (12:23:45 CEST)
SARS-CoV-2 infects a range of host species. However, the susceptibility of companion animals to SARS-CoV-2 and their potential ability to transmit the virus to humans remains unclear. Here, we present a detailed clinical description of an immunosuppressed dog that was infected with SARS-CoV-2. The dog had severe gastrointestinal (GI) clinical signs, coagulopathy, elevated hepatic transaminases, and met canine systemic inflammatory response syndrome criteria, without respiratory clinical signs, mirroring a subset of humans with GI-restricted COVID-19. Viral sequencing demonstrated divergence from other reported sequences, based on phylogenetic analysis. The dog shed high levels of virus for a prolonged time period with positive virus isolation. The dog’s immunosuppressed state may have increased both susceptibility to infection and disease progression. Together, our findings suggest that certain individual companion animals may be at higher risk for severe SARS-CoV-2 infection, COVID-19-like disease, and high viral shedding, which may pose a transmission risk to humans.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202102.0597.v1
Online: 26 February 2021 (08:59:29 CET)
Medical surveillance and risk mitigation protocols to reduce viral transmission have underpinned the return of elite football during the COVID-19 pandemic. This article describes the evidence-informed approach and surveillance findings from the English Football League across a 9-week period at the end of the 2019-20 season. Protocols were devised by the lead EFL Medical Advisor with specialist occupational medicine input. Isolation requirements for cases and contacts were in-line with UK Government regulations, with external contact tracing conducted by local public health authorities. Quantitative PCR testing was conducted twice weekly and within 72 hours of fixtures. 43 individuals, including 18 players returned positive tests. No positive results were returned after week 5 (round 10). Our findings support those from other leagues that with appropriate compliance, elite football can continue safely during this pandemic. We recommend that protocols and compliance should be revised as necessary according to community prevalence and changes in viral transmission dynamics.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0174.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Obstetrics & Gynaecology Keywords: cesarean section; urinary catheterization; urinary tract infection
Online: 8 September 2020 (06:06:44 CEST)
Objective: Urinary catheters are known cause of urinary morbidities. The longer the catheter is retained, the greater the risk for contamination and infection. An increasing body of literature suggests routine practice of catheterization and retaining it for 24 hours does not add any procedural advantage. Thus, we sought to study outcomes in relation to early vs. delayed removal of urinary catheters following cesarean section. Methods: We randomly assigned 116 patients into early and delayed removal of urinary catheter groups. In the early group, catheter was removed immediately after the procedure and in the delayed removal group, catheter was removed 24 hours later. Clinical outcomes were measured in terms of significant bacteriuria 72 hours postop, voiding difficulties, urinary retention, mobilization time, length of hospital stay, and patient satisfaction. Results: Study revealed higher incidence of bacteriuria in the delayed removal group (32.8% vs. 15.5%, P = 0.030). Urinary frequency was also higher (34.6% Vs. 8.6%, P=0.001). However, there were no difference between the two groups in other urinary complaints including dysuria and urgency (P = 0.103 & P = 0.087). Urinary retention was more frequent in the early group, but difference was not significant (P = 0.080). Patients with immediate removal of the urinary catheter had early ambulation and early discharge from hospital (P = 0.001 and P = 0.040) and were generally satisfied with the procedure (P= 0.010). Conclusion: Our study showed that immediate removal of urinary catheter was associated with lower urinary complications, shorter length of hospitalization and associated cost.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0075.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Oncology & Oncogenics Keywords: COVID-19 infection; CT-scan; oncological patients
Online: 4 September 2020 (03:14:13 CEST)
Background The acknowledgment of computed tomography (CT) defined diagnosis in high prevalence northern Italy may identify more patients with Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID 19) infection, than RT-PCR alone. Methods We retrospectively reviewed 148 chest CT scans of oncological patients who were referred to the Radiological Unit of Policlinico S. Marco from 1st of February 2020 to 30th of April 2020, during the Covid-19 outbreak in Bergamo area. Therefore, we analyzed RT-PCR tests of these 148 patients. Results Among 32 patients with diagnosis of COVID-19 infection: 17 patients were asymptomatic or had mild symptoms (53.1%), while 15 developed severe disease (46.8%). The incidence of COVID-19 infection is 22.9%, the mortality rate is 18.8%. Severe COVID-19 disease is associated with higher median age. We did not find any correlation between disease severity and sex, smoke or cardiovascular comorbidities. Remarkably, patients who were on treatment developed milder disease than cancer patients who were not on treatment. Conclusions The acceptance of CT-defined diagnosis in high prevalence area like Bergamo highlighted a larger number of COVID-19 oncological population than RT-PCR alone, in particular asymptomatic and mild symptomatic patients. We observed that actively treated patients had milder disease, according to previous studies that suggested a protective role of immunosuppression.
SHORT NOTE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0155.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Probability And Statistics Keywords: Confidence interval; Infection fatality rate; Covid-19
Online: 8 July 2020 (12:04:50 CEST)
Covid-19 fatality rates of 0.37% (Gangelt, Germany) and 0.17% (Santa Clara, USA) have been reported, estimated from serological studies. We show that the two confidence intervals strongly overlap when the uncertainty in the number of deaths is taken into account, so that the two investigations may be regarded as representative of the same population (tentatively: “Western society with no overload of the Health Care System during the pandemic”). Combining the results, the Covid-19 fatality rate is estimated to be found with 95% confidence in the range [0.1%; 0.3%].
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus; fulminant myocarditis; infection; echocardiography.
Online: 7 April 2020 (01:03:22 CEST)
Background: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been demonstrated to be the cause of pneumonia. Nevertheless, it has not been reported as the cause of acute myocarditis or fulminant myocarditis. Case presentation: A 63-year-old male was admitted with pneumonia and cardiac symptoms. He was genetically confirmed as having COVID-19 according to sputum testing on the day of admission. He also had elevated troponin I (Trop I) level (up to 11.37 g/L) and diffuse myocardial dyskinesia along with a decreased left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) on echocardiography. The highest level of interleukin-6 was 272.40 pg/ml. Bedside chest radiographs showed typical ground-glass changes indicative of viral pneumonia. Laboratory test results for viruses that cause myocarditis were all negative. The patient conformed to the diagnostic criteria of the Chinese expert consensus statement for fulminant myocarditis. After receiving antiviral therapy and mechanical life support, Trop I was reduced to 0.10 g/L, and interleukin-6 was reduced to 7.63 pg/ml. Moreover, the LVEF of the patient gradually recovered to 68%. The patient died of aggravation of secondary infection on the 33rd day of hospitalization. Conclusion: COVID-19 patients may develop severe cardiac complications such as myocarditis and heart failure. This is the first report of COVID-19 complicated with fulminant myocarditis. The mechanism of cardiac pathology caused by COVID-19 needs further study.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0271.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Ophthalmology Keywords: Coronavirus; 2019-nCOV; SARS-CoV-2; transmission; infection; conjunctiva; eye
Online: 24 March 2020 (06:42:35 CET)
The outbreak of recently identified 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCOV) infection has become a world-wide health threat. Currently, more information is needed for further understanding the transmission, clinical characteristics, and infection control procedures of 2019-nCOV. Recently, the role of the eye in transmitting 2019-nCOV has been intensively discussed. Previous investigations about other high infectious human COVs, that is, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), may provide helpful information. In this review, we describe the genomics and morphology of human CoVs, the epidemiology, systemic and ophthalmic manifestations, mechanisms of human CoVs infection, and infection control procedures. The role of the eye in the transmission of SARS-CoV and 2019-nCOV is discussed. Although the conjunctiva is directly exposed to extraocular pathogens, and the mucosa of ocular surface and upper respiratory tract is connected by nasolacrimal duct and share same entry receptors for some respiratory viruses. The eye is rarely involved in human CoVs infection, conjunctivitis is quite rare in patients with SARS-CoV and 2019-nCoV infection, and COV RNA positive rate by RT-PCR test in tears and conjunctival secretions from patients with SARS-CoV and 2019-nCoV infection is also very low, which imply that the eye is neither a preferred organ of human COVs infection, nor is a preferred gateway of entry for human COVs to infect respiratory tract. However, pathogens exposed to the ocular surface might be transported to nasal and nasopharyngeal mucosa by constant tear rinsing through lacrimal duct, and then cause respiratory tract infection. Considering close doctor-patient contact is quite common in ophthalmic practice which are apt to transmit human COVs by droplets and fomites, hand hygiene and personal protection are still highly recommended for health care workers to avoid hospital-related viral transmission during ophthalmic practice.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201902.0066.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Microbiology Keywords: Escherichia coli; antimicrobial resistance; infection; molecular epidemiology
Online: 7 February 2019 (09:15:44 CET)
Background: Infections caused by E. coli cause considerable disease burden and range from frequently occurring and relatively innocent urinary tract infection (UTI) to severe bloodstream infection (BSI). The incidence of infections caused by ESBL-producing E. coli (ESBL-PEc) is increasing, justifying surveillance and development of preventive strategies in several domains. Faecal carriage is universal and believed to be the most important reservoir for E. coli from which infections can originate. It is currently unknown to what extent Dutch E. coli carriage strains in the community reflect isolates causing disease. In this study, we will perform comparative genomics to infer the population structures of human-derived ESBL-PEc from community- and hospital-acquired infections and from community-based faecal carriage samples in the Netherlands. Furthermore, we will describe the molecular epidemiology of E. coli isolates causing invasive disease (BSI). Methods: This study uses four different microbiological data sources: 1) ESBL-PEc from patients with community-acquired UTI tested in primary care between May and November 2017, 2) ESBL-PEc from urine cultures obtained from patients hospitalized between January 2014 and December 2016, 3) E. coli from blood cultures obtained from patients hospitalized between January 2014 and December 2016, and 4) ESBL-PEc from faecal samples collected in a national population- prevalence study performed between January 2014 and January 2017. Clinical epidemiological data was collected from all patients and all isolates were subjected to whole genome sequencing. Discussion: The EPIGENEC study (EPIdemiology and GENetics of E. coli) will describe the molecular epidemiology of E. coli BSI and assess the genomic population structure of ESBL-PEc strains from community-acquired and nosocomial infections, and of ESBL-PEc reflecting community-based faecal carriage. Information from these studies may assist in optimizing surveillance strategies and determining targets and potential impact of future new preventive measures.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201802.0053.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: epidemiology of fungal infections; infection burden; Uruguay
Online: 6 February 2018 (06:52:38 CET)
We aimed to estimate for the first time the burden of fungal infections in Uruguay. Data on population characteristics and underlying conditions were extracted from the National Statistics Institute, the World Bank, national registries and published articles. When no data existed, risk populations were used to estimate frequencies extrapolating from the literature. Population structure: total 3,444,006; 73% adults; 35% women younger than 50 years. Size of populations at risk: HIV infected 12,000; acute myeloid leukemia 126; hematopoietic stem cell transplantation 30; solid organ transplants 134; COPD 272,006 (19.7% of older than 40); asthma in adults 223,431 (prevalence 9%); cystic fibrosis in adults 48; tuberculosis 613 (incidence 26.2%), lung cancer 1,400 (ASR incidence 27.4). Annual incidence estimations per 100,000: 22.4 invasive aspergillosis, 16.4 candidaemia, 3.7 Candida peritonitis, 1.62 Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia, 0.75 cryptococcosis, severe asthma with fungal sensitisation 217, allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis 165, recurrent Candida vaginitis 6,323, oral candidiasis 74.5 and oesophageal candidiasis 25.7. Although some under and overestimations could have been made, we expect that at least 127,525 people suffer from serious fungal infections each year. Sporothrichosis, histoplasmosis, paracoccidioidomycosis and dermatophytosis are known to be frequent but no data are available to make accurate estimations. Given the magnitude of the burden of fungal infections in Uruguay, efforts should be made to improve surveillance, strengthen laboratory diagnosis and warrant access to first line antifungals.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202211.0227.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Sport Sciences & Therapy Keywords: Bayesian; cardiovascular disease; CVD; cross-sectional; logistic regression
Online: 14 November 2022 (01:55:06 CET)
Background: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been one of the leading causes of death and disability-adjusted life years lost worldwide. Blood pressure, lipid, and cholesterol are good predictors of CVD risk and correspond upon age and physical fitness. However, few studies have explored the variation trend of CVD risk factors across different populations upon age and their muscle strength. Objective: to analysis the variation tendency of CVD risk factors in blood according to age and relative grip strength among different populations. Method: 25363 participants were recruited in this cross-sectional study and 24709 were included in the analysis. A logistic regression and a Bayesian probabilistic analysis based on Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) Modeling is conducted to build probability prediction models of hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and hypercholesterolemia according to age, relative grip strength, body weight conditions, and physical activity levels. Results: 1) age might be the main influence factor of hypertension, which is regarded as one of the primary CVD risk factors. However, although keeping a high level of physical activity might have positive effect on preventing hypertension because that individuals with normal body weight and higher physical activity shows a lower probability of being diagnosed with hypertension, it might could not prevent individuals from getting hypertension with age. 2) After 60, individuals of normal body weight seem more likely to have hyperlipidemia than those are overweight or obese. 3) Larger relative grip strength might not be able to offset the negative effects of obesity, overweight and physical inactivity on hyperlipidemia. 4) The probability of getting hypercholesterolemia varies less with age and relative grip strength. Conclusion: Body weight management and keeping high levels of physical activity are recommended at any age. It might benefit to increase some bodyweight after 60 years old.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0023.v1
Subject: Biology, Entomology Keywords: Malaria; Anopheles gambiae; vector control; neonicotinoids; cross-resistance
Online: 4 January 2022 (20:40:51 CET)
Background: New insecticides with novel modes of action such as neonicotinoids have recently been recommended for public health use by WHO. Resistance monitoring of such novel insecticides requires a robust protocol to monitor the development of resistance in natural populations. In this study, we comparatively used three different solvents to assess the susceptibility of malaria vectors to neonicotinoids across Africa.Methods: Mosquitoes were collected from May to July 2021 from three agricultural settings in Cameroon (Njombe-Penja, Nkolondom, and Mangoum), the Democratic Republic of Congo (Ndjili-Brasserie), Ghana (Atatam), and Uganda (Mayuge). Using the CDC bottle test, we compared the effect of three different solvents (ethanol, acetone, acetone+MERO) on the efficacy of neonicotinoids against Anopheles gambiae s.l. In addition, TaqMan assays were used to genotype key pyrethroid-resistant markers in An. gambiae and to evaluate potential cross-resistance between pyrethroids and clothianidin.Results: Lower mortalities were observed for all populations when using absolute ethanol or acetone alone as solvent (11.4- 51.9% mortality for Nkolondom, 31.7- 48.2% for Mangoum, 34.6- 56.1% for Mayuge, 39.4- 45.6% for Atatam, 83.7- 89.3% for Congo and 71.05- 95.9% for Njombe pendja) compared to acetone + MERO for which 100% mortality was observed for all the populations. Synergist assays (PBO, DEM and DEF) revealed a significant increase of mortality suggesting that metabolic resistance mechanisms are contributing to the reduced susceptibility. A negative association was observed between the L1014F-kdr mutation and clothianidin resistance with a greater frequency of homozygote resistant mosquitoes among the dead than among survivors (OR=0.5; P=0.02). However, the I114T-GSTe2 was in contrast significantly associated with a greater ability to survive clothianidin with a higher frequency of homozygote resistant among survivors than other genotypes (OR=2.10; P=0.013). Conclusions: This study revealed a contrasted susceptibility pattern depending on the solvents with ethanol/acetone resulting in lower mortality, thus possibly overestimating resistance, whereas the addition of MERO consistently increased the efficacy of neonicotinoids in terms of percentage mortalities and time to final mortality. The addition of MERO could however prevent the early detection of resistance development. We therefore recommend monitoring susceptibility using both acetone alone and acetone+MERO (8-10µg/ml for clothianidin) to capture the accurate resistance profile of the mosquito populations.
Subject: Physical Sciences, Atomic & Molecular Physics Keywords: positron; model potential; wavepacket propagation; vibrational cross section
Online: 7 September 2021 (12:00:07 CEST)
The vibrational excitation cross section of a diatomic molecule by positron impact is obtained using wavepacket propagation techniques. The dynamics was carried on a two-dimensional potential energy surface which couples a hydrogen-like harmonic oscillator to a positron via a spherically symmetric correlation polarization potential. The cross section for the excitation of the first vibrational mode is in good agreement with previous reports. Our model suggests that a positron couples to the target vibration by responding instantly to an interaction potential which depends on the target vibrational coordinate.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0057.v1
Subject: Engineering, Automotive Engineering Keywords: cross-curricular learning outcome; ethical responsibility; environmental responsibility
Online: 2 July 2021 (14:13:00 CEST)
This paper presents a study on the development of the cross-curricular learning outcome (CCLO) "Ethical, environmental and professional responsibility" by the students of different Bache-lor’sDegrees taught at Universitat Politècnica de València. The work and development of this learning outcome entails great complexity, given the double dimension of responsibility that it involves. At the end of their training at the university, students are expected to show ethical, en-vironmental, and professional responsibility towards themselves and others. Interviews have been conducted with lecturers who work and assess this outcome in their subjects, most/all of them related to science and engineering. The objective was to identify the learning approach used at the different subjects to guarantee the acquisition of this CCLO by the students. A focus group has also been carried out with students to determine the importance they give to this learning outcome, and to know their degree of satisfaction with the training received. The methodology used to obtain the data from lecturers and students and to process the information to get a precise diagnosis is fully described in the paper. Results are satisfactory to some extent: most of the lecturers carry out appropriate activities and most of students achieve the expected proficiency level. Finally, recommendations are given to improve the development of this cross-curricular learning outcome.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202011.0704.v2
Subject: Materials Science, Biomaterials Keywords: single nanowires; Symmetry breaking; rectangular cross-section; absorption
Online: 8 February 2021 (11:38:12 CET)
Light absorption in single nanowires (NWs) is one of the most crucial factors for photovoltaic applications. In this paper, we carried out a detailed investigation of light absorption in single rectangular NWs (RNWs). We show that the RNWs exhibit improved light absorption compared with the square NWs (SNWs), which can be attributed to the symmetry-breaking structure that can increase the light path length by increasing the vertical side and the enhanced leaky mode resonances (LMRs) by decreasing the horizontal side. We found that the light absorption in silicon RNWs can be enhanced by engineering the horizontal and vertical sides, the photocurrent is significantly increased by 276.5% or 82.9% compared with that of the SNWs with the same side length as the horizontal side of 100 nm or the vertical side of 1000 nm, respectively. This work provides an effective way for designing high-efficiency single NW photovoltaic devices based on the symmetry breaking from the SNWs to RNWs.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0662.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Allergology Keywords: Exercise; Health; Obesity; Northern Latitudes; Cross-country skiing
Online: 25 December 2020 (13:15:58 CET)
Background: Physical activity is recommended to mitigate the incidence of obesity, but delivery of community wide initiatives is cumbersome. The challenges met by such programs are magnified when implementation transpires in the remote villages of Alaska. To overcome the difficulty of this challenge in the Arctic, the Skiku/AK Nordic cross-country skiing program was developed. The objective of this study was to evaluate whether access to Skiku/AK Nordic program would promote physical activity levels that met the daily recommendations for physical activity in Alaska Native children. Methods: Eight children (4 females and 4 males; 10±2 years/age) were recruited from Kaktovik, Alaska for participation in this study. Expert coaches and staff provided one week of cross-country ski instruction and access to ski equipment. Physical activity was monitored using ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometers. Data collected from the devices was then downloaded and analyzed using ActiLife software. Results: The participants expended ~586 calories/day devoted to physical activity. Light and moderate physical activity was 68±38 minutes/day and 447±248 minutes/day, respectively. Conclusions: Delivery of the Skiku/AK Nordic program promoted favorable levels of physical activity in Alaska Native children. Further research is needed to assess the longitudinal and seasonal effectiveness of the Skiku/AK Nordic program.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0712.v2
Subject: Materials Science, Biomaterials Keywords: silicon; single nanowires; elliptical cross-section; absorption; photocurrent
Online: 19 October 2020 (15:58:52 CEST)
Light trapping in single nanowires (NWs) are of vital importance for photovoltaic applications. However, circular NWs (CNWs) can limit its light-trapping ability due to high geometrical symmetry. In this work, we present a detailed study of light trapping in single NWs with an elliptical cross-section (ENWs). We demonstrate that the ENWs exhibit significantly enhanced light trapping compared with the CNWs, which can be ascribed to the symmetry-broken structure that can orthogonalize the direction of light illumination and the leaky mode resonances (LMRs). That is, the elliptical cross-section can simultaneously increase the light path length by increasing the vertical axis and reshape the LMR modes by decreasing the horizontal axis. We found that the light absorption can be engineered via tuning the horizontal and vertical axes, the photocurrent is significantly enhanced by 374.0% (150.3%, 74.1%) or 146.1% (61.0%, 35.3%) in comparison with that of the CNWs with the same diameter as the horizontal axis of 100 (200, 400) nm or the vertical axis of 1000 nm, respectively. This work advances our understanding of how to improve light trapping based on the symmetry breaking from the CNWs to ENWs and provides a rational way for designing high-efficiency single or self-assembled NW photovoltaic devices.
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: NMDA receptors; P2X2 receptors; P2X4 receptors; cross-talk
Online: 4 August 2020 (07:32:07 CEST)
Purinergic receptors (P2X) are ATP-gated ion channels with an elusive role in the CNS. While the P2X2 and P2X4 subtypes are widely expressed in most neurons (i.e. at the edge of the postsynaptic densities of excitatory synapses), the direct contribution of P2X to synaptic transmission is uncertain. Several P2X have been shown to participate in receptor cross-talk: an interaction where one receptor (e.g. P2X2) influences the activity of another (e.g. GABA or AMPA receptors.) In this study, we tested for interactions between P2X2 or P2X4 and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs). Using two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology experiments in X. laevis oocytes, we demonstrate that both P2X2 and P2X4 interact with NMDARs in an inhibitory manner. When investigating the molecular domains responsible for this phenomenon, we found that the P2X2 c-terminus (CT) could interfere with P2X2 and P2X4 interactions with NMDARs. We also report that 11 distal CT residues on the P2X4 facilitate the P2X4-NMDAR interaction, and that a peptide consisting of these P2X4 CT residues (11C) can disrupt the interaction between NMDARs and P2X2 or P2X4. Collectively, these results provide new evidence for the modulatory nature of P2X2 and P2X4, suggesting they might play a more nuanced role in the CNS.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201704.0090.v1
Subject: Engineering, Electrical & Electronic Engineering Keywords: motion parameters estimation, wideband LFM radar, cross-correlation.
Online: 17 April 2017 (05:00:46 CEST)
In wideband radar systems, the performance of motion parameters estimation can significantly affect the performance of object detection and the quality of inverse synthetic aperture radar (ISAR) imaging. Although the traditional motion parameters estimation methods can reduce the range migration (RM) and Doppler frequency migration (DFM) effects in ISAR imaging, the computational complexity is high. In this paper, we propose a new fast non-searching motion parameters estimation method based on cross-correlation of adjacent echoes (CCAE) for wideband LFM signals. A cross-correlation operation is carried out for two adjacent echo signals, then the motion parameters can be calculated by estimating the frequency of the correlation result. The proposed CCAE method can be applied directly to the stretching system, which is commonly adopted in wideband radar systems. Simulational results demonstrate that the new method can achieve better estimation performances, with much lower computational cost, compared with existing methods. The experimental results on real radar data sets are also evaluated to verify the effectiveness and superiority of the proposed method compared to the state-of-the-art existing methods.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202212.0448.v2
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Sport Sciences & Therapy Keywords: moderate exercise; vigorous exercise; upper respiratory infection; immunity
Online: 10 January 2023 (02:31:03 CET)
The practice of physical activity is an effective non-pharmacological strategy for preventing and treating chronic diseases. A large body of evidence has contributed to establishing a positive correlation between a physically active lifestyle and health benefits, including enhanced vaccination responses, lower numbers of senescent T-cells, increased T-cell proliferative capacity, lower levels of inflammatory cytokines, and improved neutrophil and macrophage function. While females are generally thought to exert more robust immune responses than males in response to a variety of challenges, and both male and female sex hormones have been suggested as mediators of immune function, research on this topic has not always been designed with a sex-specific lens. The goal of this review is to summarize the available experimental and clinical evidence linking exercise and immune function in male and female subjects, with an emphasis on sex differences and sex-specific mechanisms. Overall, the available evidence indicates that moderate exercise and physical activity improves immune function in both sexes, whereas prolonged and high-intensity exercise temporarily impairs immune responses at a higher degree in females. A role of male and female sex hormones in these sex-specific effects is also discussed.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202209.0383.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: Obstructive Sleep Apnea; COVID-19; Hospitalization; Infection; Epidemiology
Online: 26 September 2022 (08:02:12 CEST)
Background: Medical comorbidities increase the risk of severe COVID-19 infection. In some studies, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) has been identified as a comorbid condition that is associated with an increased prevalence of COVID-19 infection and hospitalization, but few have investigated this association in a general population. Research Question: In a general population, is OSA associated with increased odds of COVID-19 infection and hospitalization and are these altered with COVID-19 vaccination? Study Design: Cross-sectional survey of a diverse sample of 15,057 U.S. adults Results: COVID-19 infection and hospitalization rates were 38.9% and 2.9% respectively. OSA or OSA symptoms were reported in 19.4%. In logistic regression models adjusted for demographic, socio-economic and comorbid medical conditions, OSA was positively associated with COVID-19 infection (aOR: 1.58, 95%CI: 1.39-1.79) and COVID-19 hospitalization (aOR: 1.55, 95% CI: 1.17-2.05). In fully adjusted models, boosted vaccination status was protective against both infection and hospitalization. Boosted vaccination status attenuated the association between OSA and COVID-19 related hospitalization, but not infection. Participants with untreated or symptomatic OSA were at greater risk for COVID-19 infection; those with untreated, but not symptomatic OSA were more likely to be hospitalized. Interpretation: In a general population sample, OSA is associated with a greater likelihood of having had a COVID-19 infection and a COVID-19 hospitalization with the greatest impact observed among persons experiencing OSA symptoms or who were untreated for their OSA. Boosted vaccination status attenuated the association between OSA and COVID-19 related hospitalization.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202207.0046.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Ophthalmology Keywords: infectious keratitis; corneal infection; antibiotic susceptibility; antimicrobial resistance
Online: 4 July 2022 (09:41:43 CEST)
Infectious keratitis (IK) represents a major cause of corneal blindness. This study aims to investigate the demographics, risk factors, microbiological characteristics and antibiotic susceptibility patterns of IK in Taiwan over the past 15 years. A retrospective population-based study was conducted using the Chang Gung Research Database. Patients with IK were identified by diagnostic codes for corneal ulcer from 2004 to 2019. Of 7807 included subjects, 45.2% of patients had positive corneal cultures. The proportion of contact lens-related IK declined, while that of IK related to systemic diseases grew. The percentage of isolated gram-positive bacteria surpassed that of gram-negative bacteria in the 15-year period. The prevalence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa showed a decreasing trend (p = 0.004), whereas coagulase-negative Staphylococcus (CNS) and Propionibacterium species were increasingly detected (p < 0.001). Overall, the trend of antibiotic susceptibility of both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria did not change throughout the study period. The susceptibility to the test antibiotics maintained over 90% in gram-negative isolates during 15 years. Vancomycin preserved 100% susceptibility to all gram-positive isolates. Since most tested antibiotics exhibited stable susceptibility over decades, this study reinforced that fluoroquinolones and fortified vancomycin continue to be good empiric therapies for treating bacterial keratitis in Taiwan.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0125.v1
Online: 10 May 2022 (03:44:27 CEST)
Gal-3BP is a multifunctional glycoprotein involved in cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions known to be upregulated in cancer and various viral infections, including HIV-1, HCV and SARS-CoV-2, with a key role in regulating the antiviral immune response. Studies have identified a direct correlation between circulating levels of Gal-3BP and the severity of disease and/or disease progression for some viral infections, including SARS-CoV-2, suggesting a role of Gal-3BP in these processes. Due to Gal-3BP’s complex biology, the molecular mechanisms underlying its role in viral diseases have been only partially clarified. Gal-3BP induces the expression of IFN and pro-inflammatory cytokines, including interleukin-6, mainly interacting with galectin-3, targeting TRAF-6 and TRAF-3 complex, thus having a putative role in the modulation of TGF-β signaling. In addition, an antiviral activity of Gal-3BP has been ascribed to a direct interaction of the protein with virus components. In this review, we explored the role of Gal-3BP in viral infections and the relationship between Gal-3BP upregulation and disease severity and progression, mainly focusing on SARS-CoV-2. Augmented knowledge of Gal-3BP role in virus infections can be useful to evaluate its possible use as a prognostic biomarker and as a putative target to block or attenuate severe disease.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0634.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: deubiquitinase; envelope protein; USP38; virus infection; Zika virus
Online: 28 July 2021 (17:02:36 CEST)
Zika virus (ZIKV) is a mosquito-borne flavivirus, and its infection may cause severe neurodegenerative diseases. The outbreak of ZIKV in 2015 in South American has caused severe human congenital and neurologic disorders. Thus, it is vitally important to figure out inner mechanism of ZIKV infection. Here, our data suggested that the ubiquitin-specific peptidase 38 (USP38) played an important role in host resistance to ZIKV infection, during which ZIKV infection did not affect USP38 expression. Mechanistically, USP38 bound to ZIKV envelope (E) protein through its C-terminal domain and attenuated its K48-linked and K63-linked polyubiquitination, thereby repressed the infection of ZIKV. In addition, we found that the deubiquitinase activity of USP38 was essential to inhibit ZIKV infection, and the mutant that lacked the deubiquitinase activity of USP38 lost ability to inhibit the infection. In conclusion, we found a novel host protein USP38 against ZIKV infection, and this may represent a potential therapeutic target for the treatment and prevention of ZIKV infection.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202107.0236.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: CPE; drains; hospital plumbing; environmental contamination; infection control
Online: 12 July 2021 (09:37:00 CEST)
Sink waste traps and drains are a reservoir for multi-drug resistant Gram-negative bacteria in the hospital environment. It has been suggested that these bacteria can migrate through hospital plumbing. Hospital waste traps were installed in a laboratory model system where sinks were connected through a common wastewater pipe. Enterobacterales populations were monitored using selective culture, MALDI-TOF identification and antibiotic resistance profiling before and after a wastewater backflow event. When transfer between sinks was suspected, isolates were compared using whole-genome sequencing. Immediately after the wastewater backflow, two KPC-producing Enterobacter cloacae were recovered from a waste trap in which Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacterales (CPE) had not been detected previously. The isolates belonged to ST501 and ST31 and were genetically indistinguishable to those colonising sinks elsewhere in the system. Following inter-sink transfer, KPC-producing E. cloacae ST501 successfully integrated into the microbiome of the recipient sink and was detected in the waste trap water at least six months after the backflow event. Seven weeks and three months after the backflow, other inter-sink transfers involving Escherichia coli ST5295 and KPC-producing E. cloacae ST501 were also observed.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0429.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: Fusarium graminearum; mycotoxins; wheat; natural infection; epidemic year
Online: 16 June 2021 (09:34:11 CEST)
Fusarium graminearum is a dangerous pathogen of the cereals producing mycotoxins (trichothecene and zearalenone) harmful for human and animal health. There were evaluated sixteen winter wheat varieties for their response in conditions of natural infection with F. graminearum in the epidemic year 2019, being well known that accumulation of mycotoxins (DON, ZON and T-2) is induced by different biotic and abiotic factors. Field plot was organized in Latin rectangle randomized with three replicates. For all evaluated wheat varieties were collected field data (incidence, severity and infection degree of the fungus F. graminearum) and laboratory data (mycotoxins concentration in grains) that have been processed using the software JASP (Version 0.14) for descriptive statistics, and exploratory factor analysis (EFA). Microsoft Excel 2019 was used to calculate Pearson’s correlation coefficients. The results showed negative corelation between plants’ density and F. graminearum attack frequency. Positive correlations were found between DON and T-2 and between DON and fungus attack intensity. This work highlights that during a F. graminearum epidemic year some of the most influential factors in the contamination with harmful mycotoxins (DON, ZON and T-2) are: plants density, frequency of the attack on ear, diseased ears and attack intensity on ears.
CONCEPT PAPER | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0664.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: Pathogen; Herd Immunity Threshold; R-naught; Infection dynamics
Online: 27 May 2021 (10:33:34 CEST)
In this article we have presented a new perception of herd immunity threshold (HIT) which considers that only a “band of population” are susceptible to any pathogenic infection. This is termed as the “effective herd immunity threshold” (EHIT) and the progression of the disease (caused by this pathogenic infection) is mainly determined by this EHIT value. We have argued here that this EHIT value (considering the immunity band picture in the population) will be substantially lower than the estimated canonical HIT values obtained from various existing models. We propose that the actual prediction of the disease progression should now be calculated using the EHIT values.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0143.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Biochemistry Keywords: Co-infection; Drug resistance; Gut microbiota; Salmonellosis; Schistosoma
Online: 7 May 2021 (12:02:03 CEST)
Antibiotic inefficacy in treating bacterial infections is largely studied in the context of developing resistance mechanisms. However, little attention has been paid to combined diseases mechanisms, interspecies pathogenesis and the resulting impact on antimicrobial treatment. This review will consider the co-infections of Salmonella and Schistosoma mansoni. It summarises the protective mechanisms that the pathophysiology of the two infections confer, which leads to an antibiotic protection phenomenon. This review will elucidate the functional characteristics of the gut microbiota in the context of these co-infections, the pathogenicity of these infections in infected mice, and the efficacy of the antibiotics used in treatment of these co-infections over time. Salmonella-Schistosoma interactions and the mechanism for antibiotic protection are not well established. However, antimicrobial drug inefficacy is an existing phenomenon in these co-infections. The treatment of schistosomiasis to ensure the efficacy of antibiotic therapy for bacterial infections should be considered in co-infected patients.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0115.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Microbiology Keywords: intramammary infection; spa typing; antimicrobial susceptibility; dairy cow
Online: 5 September 2020 (04:51:45 CEST)
In the present study, we aimed to determine the antimicrobial resistance and genetic structure of a population of S. aureus recovered from transient and persistent intramammary infections and nares/muzzles. We investigated the antimicrobial resistance of 189 S. aureus strains using a broad antimicrobial susceptibility profile. Furthermore, 107 S. aureus isolates were strain-typed using staphylococcal protein-A (spa) typing. Here, a great proportion of strains exhibited multidrug resistance to antimicrobials, including resistance to critically important antimicrobials, although no methicillin-resistant S. aureus strains were found. Our study did not strengthen the idea that extramammary niches (i.e., nares/muzzles) are an important source for S. aureus. A discrepancy in the antimicrobial resistance between S. aureus strains isolated from nasal/muzzles and milk samples was observed. Furthermore, S. aureus isolates from transient and persistent IMIs did not differ by spa typing, suggesting that the persistence of bovine IMIs was determined by cow factors. Thus, the high level of multidrug-resistant S. aureus found in the two herds studied together with the predominance of a well udder-adapted S. aureus strain may contribute to the history of the high prevalence of mastitis caused by S. aureus, leading to great animal and public health concerns.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0641.v1
Online: 26 July 2020 (16:45:25 CEST)
Currently, the COVID‐19 has directly affected the millions of humans lives. The symptoms of the disease involving fever, malaise, chest infection, and breathing difficulties, were identified, and its existence is continuously becoming restructured. The World Health Organization (WHO) had mentioned the wide diagnostics test besides COVID-19 that would also assist medical facilities to recognize infectious diseases as well as currently focusing efficiently on preventing and afterward defeating this viral disease. The infection is usually transmitted among human beings in direct contact, greatest through the liquid bubbles generated through cough, sneeze, or speaking. This paper reviews the COVID 19 pandemic, its history, current updates, contact tracing applications, and use of emerging technologies like the Internet of Things (IoT) and Blockchain for stopping the spreading and provide service online to the patient from a distance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202007.0189.v1
Online: 9 July 2020 (12:18:46 CEST)
Background: The novel emerging virus SARS-CoV-2 has affected all human-kind during the first half of 2020. The aim of the study was to survey the actual circumstances from January until May. Methods: The data are collected and released systematically, by law, from the National Epidemiological Surveillance of Infectious Disease (NESID). Findings: Analysis of these data revealed that the infection spread in Japan from late March to early April 2020. The SARS-CoV-2 infection rate at its peak was estimated to be 10%. Thus, the size of the population who may have been exposed to the novel virus in Japan is estimated at 0.2 million, which is relatively small. The number of related deaths is likely to converge on 1,000 people. Interpretation: Applying the law of large numbers allows estimation of the infection rate as well as of the size of the affected population by statistical analysis. How to collect the data must be defined before the data analysis is suggested to be important to reflect the actual circumstances about COVID-19.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0140.v1
Subject: Biology, Other Keywords: Genome; fimbrial; plasmid; ST131; Escherichia coli; evolution; infection
Online: 8 May 2020 (09:39:35 CEST)
The human gut microbiome includes beneficial, commensal and pathogenic bacteria that possess antimicrobial resistance (AMR) genes and exchange these predominantly through conjugative plasmids. Escherichia coli is a significant component of the gastrointestinal microbiome and is typically non-pathogenic in this niche. In contrast, extra-intestinal pathogenic E. coli (ExPEC) including ST131 may occupy other environments like the urinary tract or bloodstream where they express genes enabling AMR and host adhesion like type 1 fimbriae. The extent to which non-pathogenic gut E. coli and infectious ST131 share AMR genes and key associated plasmids remains understudied at a genomic level. Here, we examined AMR gene sharing between gut E. coli and ST131 to discover an extensive shared preterm infant resistome. In addition, individual ST131 show extensive AMR gene diversity highlighting that analyses restricted to the core genome may be limiting and could miss AMR gene transfer patterns. We show that pEK499-like segments are ancestral to most ST131 Clade C isolates, contrasting with a minority with substantial pEK204-like regions encoding a type IV fimbriae operon. Moreover, ST131 possess extensive diversity at genes encoding type 1, type IV, P and F17-like fimbriae, particular within subclade C2. The type, structure and composition of AMR genes, plasmids and fimbriae varies widely in ST131 and this may mediate pathogenicity and infection outcomes.
HYPOTHESIS | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0364.v1
Online: 24 March 2020 (14:54:49 CET)
Background: Covid-19 was first reported in Wuhan, China in Dec 2019. Since then, it has been transmitted rapidly in China and the rest of the world. While Covid-19 transmission rate has been declining in China, it is increasing exponentially in Europe and America. Although there are numerous studies examining Covid-19 infection, including an archived paper looking into the meteorological effect, the role of outdoor air pollution has yet to be explored rigorously. It has been shown that air pollution will weaken the immune system, and increase the rate of respiratory virus infection. We postulate that outdoor air pollution concentrations will have a negative effect on Covid-19 infections in China, whilst lockdowns, characterized by strong social distancing and home isolation measures, will help to moderate such negative effect. Methods: We will collect the number of daily confirmed Covid-19 cases in 31 provincial capital cities in China during the period of 1 Dec 2019 to 20 Mar 2020 (from a popular Chinese online platform which aggregates all cases reported by the Chinese national/provincial health authorities). We will also collect daily air pollution and meteorology data at the city-level (from the Chinese National Environmental Monitoring Center and the US National Climatic Data Center), daily inter-city migration flows and intra-city movements (from Baidu). City-level demographics including age distribution and gender, education, and median household income can be obtained from the statistical yearbooks. City-level co-morbidity indicators including rates of chronic disease and co-infection can be obtained from related research articles. A regression model is developed to model the relationship between the infection rate of Covid-19 (number of confirmed cases/population at the city level) and outdoor air pollution at the city level, after taking into account confounding factors such as meteorology, inter- and intra-city movements, demographics, and co-morbidity and co-infection rates. In particular, we shall study how air pollution affects infection rates across different cities, including Wuhan. Our model will also study air pollution would affect infection rates in Wuhan before and after the lockdown. Expected findings: We expect there be a correlation between Covid-19 infection rate and outdoor air pollution. We also expect that reduced intra-city movement after the lockdowns in Wuhan and the rest of China will play an important role in reducing the infection rate. Interpretation: Infection rate is growing exponentially in major cities worldwide. We expect Covid-19 infection rate is related to the air pollution concentration, and is strongly dependent on inter- and intra-city movements. To reduce the infection rate, the international community may deploy effective air pollution reduction plans and social distancing policies.
Subject: Life Sciences, Cell & Developmental Biology Keywords: SARS-CoV2; spike; receptor–ligand docking; super infection
Online: 20 March 2020 (08:30:40 CET)
SARS-CoV2 (corona virus) has spread globally at an unprecedented rate; so far, increasing SARS-CoV2-infected individuals have been identified. Although the situation in China is improving and is currently under control, the outbreak in other countries and its pandemic management is only beginning to develop. Based on 154 SARS-CoV2 genome sequence analyses, we used receptor–ligand docking to identify one potential point mutation (V354F) on the spike structure which enhances spike binding to ACE2 receptors underlying potential super infection. Importantly, the V354F site on spike S1 had been identified in 5/10 infected French patients living in Paris, who sharing 100% identical SARS-CoV2 genomes. With Covid-19 cases increasing rapidly in France that could lead to a new explosion, we suggest that the French government should identify all potential super spreaders and treat them accordingly. In summary, our study provides on of the measures to avoid the potential second worldwide explosion of SARS-CoV2.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202003.0291.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: co-infection; coronavirus disease 2019; COVID-19; influenza
Online: 19 March 2020 (02:00:47 CET)
Background: On late December 2019, a viral pneumonia known as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), was originated from China and spread very rapidly in the world. Therefore, COVID-19 became a global concern and health problem. Methods: We presented four patients in this study. They were selected from patients who presented with pneumonia symptoms and were suspicious for COVID-19 and referred to the intended centers for COVID-19 diagnosis and management of Shiraz University of Medical Sciences in the south of Iran. Two nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal throat swab samples were collected from each patient and tested for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) detection by real-time reverse-transcriptase–polymerase-chain-reaction (RT-PCR), and also samples were sent for influenza viruses and all the respiratory panel. Results: In the present report, four patients were diagnosed in the starting days of COVID-19 disease in our center in south of Iran with co-infection of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza virus. Conclusions: This co-infection of COVID-19 and influenza highlights the importance of considering SARS-CoV-2 PCR assay regardless of other positive findings for other pathogens in the primary test during the epidemic.
Online: 12 March 2020 (03:02:03 CET)
Novel coronavirus infection is a recent infective agent that causes severe potentially fatal pneumonia. The clinical presentation includes asymptomatic infection, severe pneumonia, and acute respiratory failure. Data pertaining to the clinical presentation of solid organ transplant recipients are scarce. Two cases of novel coronavirus infection in two recipients of renal transplant with variable clinical presentations and outcomes are reported. The first patient presented with progressive respiratory symptoms, acute renal failure, and passed away, whereas the second one, although presented with respiratory tract symptoms and hypoxemia remained stable and exhibited an excellent clinical recovery despite recent reception of thymoglobulin induction. This paper reports rare cases of novel coronavirus infection in renal transplant recipients. For an enhanced insight of the novel coronavirus infection and acute kidney injury on the clinical presentation, severity, and outcome in solid organ transplant recipients, further investigations are required.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202002.0299.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Cell & Developmental Biology Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; infection; scRNA-Seq; ACE2; spermatogonia
Online: 21 February 2020 (02:42:15 CET)
In December 2019, a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) was identified in patients with pneumonia (called COVID-19) in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. SARS-CoV-2 shares high sequence similarity and uses the same cell entry receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), as does severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV). Several studies have provided bioinformatic evidence of potential routes for SARS-CoV-2 infection in respiratory, cardiovascular, digestive and urinary systems. However, whether the reproductive system is a potential target of SARS-CoV-2 infection has not been determined. Here, we investigate the expression pattern of ACE2 in adult human testis at the level of single-cell transcriptomes. The results indicate that ACE2 is predominantly enriched in spermatogonia, Leydig and Sertoli cells. Gene ontology analyses indicate that GO categories associated with viral reproduction and transmission are highly enriched in ACE2-positive spermatogonia while male gamete generation related terms are down-regulated. Cell-cell junction and immunity related GO terms are increased in ACE2-positive Leydig and Sertoli cells, but mitochondria and reproduction related GO terms are decreased. These findings provide evidence that human testes are a potential target of SARS-CoV-2 infection which may have significant impact on our understanding of the pathophysiology of this rapidly spreading disease.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0160.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: rabies; uDISCO; 3D imaging; rabies pathogenicity; astrocyte infection
Online: 16 January 2020 (08:52:30 CET)
Although conventional immunohistochemistry for neurotropic Rabies virus (RABV) usually shows a high preference for neurons, non-neuronal cells are also potential target cells and abortive infection of astrocytes is considered a main trigger of innate immunity in the CNS. While in vitro studies indicated differences between field and less virulent lab-adapted RABVs, a systematic and quantitative comparison of astrocyte tropism in vivo is lacking. Here, a recently developed solvent-based tissue clearing technique was used to measure the RABV cell tropism in infected brains. Immunofluorescence analysis of 1 mm-thick tissue slices enabled 3D segmentation and quantification of infection frequencies of astrocytes and neurons. Comparison of highly virulent street virus clones from fox, dog, and raccoon with three lab strains of intermediate and low virulence revealed remarkable differences in the ability to infect astrocytes in vivo. While all viruses and infection routes led to comparable neuron infection frequencies, striking differences were detected for the infection of astrocytes. Consistent and inoculation route-independent astrocyte infection by field viruses, together with route-dependent or undetectable astrocyte infection by lab-adapted or vaccine viruses strongly suggests a model in which the ability to establish productive astrocyte infection in vivo functionally distinguishes field and attenuated lab RABV strains.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints201912.0170.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Dermatology Keywords: sphingomonas; gram-negative bacterial infection; skin disease; bacterial
Online: 12 December 2019 (10:01:35 CET)
Sphingomonas paucimobilis is an opportunist pathogen bacillus gram-negative aerobic with a rare occurrence. We present a case in an immunocompetent man successfully treated by surgical debridement, purulent drainage and with an associated course of antibiotics. A large necrotic infection, approximately 5 cm x 3 cm, in a 74-year-old man was identified. Empirical antibiotic therapy with ciprofloxacin 400mg EV 12/12 hours, associated with clindamycin 600mg EV 6/6 hours and pain control was done through dipyrone 1gr, tramadol 400 mg. Deep venous thrombosis was prevented through the prescription of enoxaparin 40mg subcutaneous once a day during hospitalization. The case was well illustrated with pictures throughout treatment. Complete healing was achieved after 90 days. Herein, we present a case of cutaneous contamination. The presented case is the third cutaneous contamination case reported in the literature and the first reported case in the Amazonia region in Brazil.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201907.0076.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: surgical site infection; breast surgery; breast implants; complications
Online: 4 July 2019 (11:32:17 CEST)
Purpose: Surgical site infection (SSI) is a significant complication of non-reconstructive and reconstructive breast. This study aimed to assess SSI after breast surgery over 5 years in a single center in Poland. The microorganisms responsible for SSI and their antibiotic susceptibility were determined. Materials/methods: Data of 2129 patients acquired over 5 years postoperatively by the [center] were analyzed. Results: SSI was diagnosed in 132 patients (6.2%) and was an early infection in most cases (65.2%). The incidence of SSI was highest in patients who underwent subcutaneous amputation with simultaneous reconstruction using an artificial prosthesis (14.6%) and breast reconstruction via the TRAM flap method (14.3%). Gram-positive bacteria were responsible for SSI in most cases (72.1%), and these were mainly Staphylococcus strains (53.6%). These strains were 100% susceptible to all beta-lactam antibiotics (except penicillin), but were less susceptible to macrolides and lincosamides. Conclusions: SSI is a serious problem, and attention should be focused on its prevention. Reconstruction using an artificial prosthesis or via the TRAM flap method is connected to increased SSI incidence. Further studies are required to prevent SSI following breast surgery.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201906.0094.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Microbiology Keywords: Bacteriophages, Septic wound infection, MDR, Biofilms, Phage Cocktails
Online: 11 June 2019 (10:08:07 CEST)
Lytic bacteriophages have the efficacy to act and eradicate pathogenic bacteria as an attractive tool in the near future. Bacteriophages specifically kill multidrug-resistant bacteria even which have the capacity to form biofilms. The present review mainly focused on the efficacy of bacteriophages and cocktails as therapeutic agents against predominate MDR-bacteria and their biofilms which are isolated from septic wound infections. The body of evidence includes data from studies investigating bacteriophages from sewage samples as novel antibacterial and antibiofilm agents against pathogenic bacteria. The goal of this review is to present an overview on predominant bacteria from septic wound infection, the biofilm-forming capacity of bacteria, lytic effect of bacteriophages and phage cocktails with an emphasis on the application of bacteriophages against septic wound causing bacteria.
CASE REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints201811.0254.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Other Keywords: dengue; chikungunya; Leptospira; co-infection; Colombia; Latin America
Online: 12 November 2018 (03:21:38 CET)
Background: The febrile patient from tropical areas, in which emerging arboviruses are endemic, represent a diagnostic challenge and potential co-infections with other pathogens (i.e bacteria or parasites) are usually overlooked. Objectives: We present a case of an elderly woman diagnosed with dengue, chikungunya and Leptospira interrogans co-infection. Study Design: Case report. Results: An 87-year old woman from Colombia complained of upper abdominal pain, arthralgia, myalgia, hyporexia, malaise and intermittent fever accompanied with progressive jaundice. She had a medical history of chronic heart failure (Stage C, NYHA III), without documented cardiac murmurs, right bundle branch block, non-valvular atrial fibrillation, hypertension, and chronic venous disease. Her cardiac and pulmonary status quickly deteriorated after 24 hours of her admission without electrocardiographic changes and she required ventilatory and vasopressor support. In the next hours the patient evolved to pulseless electrical activity and then she died. Dengue IgM, NS1 ELISA, MAT for Leptospira interrogans and RT-PCR for chikungunya, were positive. Discussion: This case illustrates a multiple co-infection in a febrile patient from a tropical area of Latin America that evolved to death.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201708.0093.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Microbiology Keywords: bacterial pathogens; host-pathogen interaction; infection biology; omics
Online: 27 August 2017 (11:18:27 CEST)
By providing useful tools to study host-pathogen interactions, next-generation omics has recently enabled the study of gene expression changes in both pathogen and infected host simultaneously. However, since great discriminative power is required to study pathogen and host simultaneously throughout the infection process, the depth of quantitative gene expression profiling has proven to be unsatisfactory when focusing on bacterial pathogens, thus preferentially requiring specific strategies or the development of novel methodologies based on complementary omics approaches. In this review, we focus on the difficulties encountered when making use of omics approaches to study bacterial pathogenesis. Besides, we review different omics strategies (i.e. transcriptomics, proteomics and secretomics) and their applications for studying interactions of pathogens with their host.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints201705.0062.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Immunology Keywords: microbiome; probiotics, dietary supplements; nutrition; HIV infection, inflammation
Online: 8 May 2017 (12:10:17 CEST)
Microbiota plays a key role in various body’s functions, physiological, metabolic and immunological processes, through different mechanisms such as the regulation of the development and/or functions of different types of immune cells in the intestines. Several evidences indicate that alteration in the gut microbiota can influence infectious and non-infectious diseases. Bacteria that resides on the mucosal surface or within the mucus layer participate in interactions with the host immune system, and a healthy gut microbiota is essential for the development of mucosal immunity. The immunomodulatory activity of probiotics has been proposed in several bowel disorders or in aging-related dysfunctions. In HIV infected patients, the intestinal immune system is affected and inflammation persists during ART therapy too. Several studies are in progress to investigate the ability of probiotics to modulate epithelial barrier functions, microbiota composition and microbial translocation in HIV infection. This mini-review aims to suggest how the use of probiotics is beneficial not only in maintaining a healthy status but also to improve conditions in HIV subjects.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202212.0029.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Accounting Keywords: financial ratios; cross section; oil and gas trading industry
Online: 2 December 2022 (01:51:17 CET)
This research was conducted with the aim of knowing how to compare the financial performance of the oil and gas trading industry with cross-sectional analysis techniques. The type of research conducted in this research is qualitative research with research objects at several companies, namely PT Radiant Utama Interinsco Tbk, PT Elnusa Tbk, PT AKR Corporindo Tbk, and PT Aneka Gas Industri Tbk. The data used in this study comes from secondary data, namely the internet in the form of company financial reports for the 2019-2021 period obtained from the Indonesia Stock Exchange. The results of this study indicate that PT Radiant Utama Interinsco Tbk has the best financial performance on inventory turnover ratio and average age, PT Elnusa Tbk has good inventory performance on current ratio, quick ratio, DAR, and DER., PT AKR. Corporindo Tbk has performed well on the ratios of TIE, FCC, Dividend Payout, Dividend Yield, and PER. PT Aneka Gas Industri Tbk has performed well on the ratio of Receivables Turnover Ratio and Average Age of Receivables.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0138.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Other Keywords: COVID-19; vaccination; government; cross-sectional survey; perceived risk
Online: 11 October 2022 (04:21:45 CEST)
Introduction: This study explores exposure to misinformation, COVID-19 risk perception, and confidence towards the government as predictors to negative attitudes toward the COVID-19 vaccine. Methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out from 30 June to 30 August 2021 involving 775 respondents. The survey instrument for the questionnaire is an adaptation from various different studies consisting of five main variables: 1) misinformation about vaccination; 2) risk perception toward COVID-19; 3) attitudes toward the vaccination programme; 4) intention to get vaccinated; and 5) public confidence in the government in executing the vaccination programme. Results: The results of this study indicate that higher exposure to misinformation led to higher levels of negative attitudes toward the COVID-19 vaccine. When the perceived risk of COVID-19 infection was high, mistrust of vaccine benefits was low but there were also higher worries about the future effects of the vaccine. Confidence in government was associated with lower negative attitudes toward the COVID-19 vaccine. Conclusion: The results of this study may help develop an understanding of negative attitudes toward vaccinations in Malaysia and its contributing factors.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0132.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Keywords: cross country skiing; IMU; wearable sensors; LSTM; neural network
Online: 11 October 2022 (03:04:09 CEST)
Objective: The aim of this study was to provide a new machine learning method to determine temporal events and inner-cycle parameters (e.g., cycle, poles and skis contact and swing time) in cross-country roller ski skating on the field, using a single deported inertial measurement unit (IMU). Methods: The developed method is based on long short-term memory neural networks to detect poles and skis initial and final contact with the ground during the cyclic movements. Eleven athletes skied four laps of 2.5 km at low and high intensity using skis with two different rolling coefficients. They were equipped with IMUs attached to the upper back, lower back and to the sternum. Data from force insoles and force poles were used as reference system. Results: The IMU placed on the upper back provided the best results, as the LSTM network was able to determine the temporal events with an accuracy ranging from 49 to 55 ms and the corresponding inner-cycles parameters were calculated with a precision of 63 to 68 ms. The method detected 95% of the events for the poles and 87% of the events for the skis. Conclusion: The proposed LSTM method provides a promising tool for assessing temporal events and inner-cycle phases in roller ski skating showing the potential of using a deported IMU to estimate different spatio-temporal parameters of human locomotion.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0524.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Geography Keywords: Vietnam; China; Vietnam - China border; tourism; cross-border tourism
Online: 30 August 2022 (11:32:48 CEST)
This article aims to identify the current development of cross-border tourism between Vietnam and China. The paper analyzes the perception and strategy of cross-border tourism development in the two countries, especially in the context of China’s implementation of the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI). The article emphasizes that Vietnam and China have recently made efforts to promote cross-border tourism development. At the same time, Vietnam and China see cross-border tourism development as a significant part of comprehensive border cooperation between the two countries. However, the development plans for cross-border tourism between the two countries are still mainly on the desk, not yet implemented effectively. Thus, its achievements are relatively modest. Besides, the article emphasizes that the interests of the people living in the border area, especially the Vietnam side, are almost “forgotten” in the development of cross-border travel between the two countries. Besides, the article also analyzes the challenges that the two sides are facing, especially the Vietnam side, in promoting the development of cross-border tourism between the two countries.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202207.0217.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: anti DENV IgM; IgG; Antibody-dependent enhancement; Cross-immunity
Online: 14 July 2022 (11:41:25 CEST)
Background: Dengue is the most common arthropod-borne sickness worldwide, impacting at least 50 million people each year. The dengue virus has four primary serotypes. Infection with one serotype confers homotypic immunity but not heterologous immunity, and secondary infections may be more severe. Although blood transfusions and organ donations have also been observed, the Aedes aegypti mosquito is the primary vector for the transmission of dengue. Infection causes a continuum of clinical illness, from asymptomatic infection to dengue fever, DHF, and dengue shock syndrome (DSS).Aim: To assess the presence of anti DENV IgG and anti DENV IgM antibodies specific to the four dengue serotypes in blood donor service donors and the importance of pre-donation screening in routine blood collection procedures.Method: 3 mL of peripheral venous blood from 507 blood donors was collected in tubes with BD vacutainer gel tube for serum separation after epidemiological records were reviewed. After that, serum was separated and tests were performed by SD Bioline Dengue Duo. Participants in the study completed a social and epidemiological questionnaire that contained information such as age, gender, and dengue diagnosis.Result: Out of the 507 blood samples that were taken, 473 (93.3%) came from male blood donors, while the remaining 34 (6.7%) belonged to female blood donors. The ratio of males to females is 13.91 to 1. The age range is 18–60 years, and the mean and standard deviation are both 27.7 and 6.5. 183 of the 507 samples produced anti DENV IgG positivity, while 324 did not. The ratio of positive to negative was 1.25:2.Conclusion: According to the findings of this study, quantitative methods for determining the presence of anti-dengue antibodies or detecting the dengue virus in blood donors in endemic areas should be devised in order to ensure the quality of blood transfusions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202111.0150.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, Nursing & Health Studies Keywords: medical fear; children; psychometric properties; cross-cultural adaptation; Spanish
Online: 8 November 2021 (14:33:48 CET)
Having valid and reliable tools that help health professionals to assess fear in children undergoing medical procedures is essential to offer humanized and quality of care in the paediatric population. The aim of this study was to develop the cross-cultural adaptation and the evaluation of the psychometric properties of the Spanish version of the “Child Medical Fear Scale” in its shortened version (CMFS-R). The design consisted of two phases, first of cross-cultural adaptation and second of the psychometric validation of the CMFS-R with a sample of 262 children from Spain. Confirmatory factor analysis was conducted to assess construct validity and the Cronbach alpha and the adjusted item-total score correlation coefficients were performed to study reliability. The results confirmed internal consistency and construct validity of the Spanish version of the CMFS-R, indicating that the scale has an acceptable level of validity and reliability. Therefore, this study brings a new version of the scale to assess fear related to medical procedures for use in the Spanish paediatric population.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0184.v1
Subject: Engineering, Construction Keywords: cross-laminated timber; hygrothermal; energy; moisture; durability; tropical; passivhaus
Online: 10 September 2021 (11:21:01 CEST)
The uptake of buildings employing cross-laminated timber (CLT) assemblies and designed to Passivhaus standard has accelerated internationally over the past two decades due to several factors including design responses to the climate crisis by decarbonising the building stock. Structural CLT technology and the voluntary Passivhaus certification both show measurable benefits in reducing energy consumption, while contributing to durability and indoor comfort. However, there is a general lack of evidence to support a fast uptake of these technologies in Australia. This paper responds to the compelling need of providing quantitative data and adoption strategies, it explores their combined application as a potential pathway for climate-appropriate design of energy-efficient and durable mass timber envelope solutions for subtropical and tropical Australian climates. Hygrothermal risk assessments of interstitial condensation and mould growth of CLT wall assemblies inform best-practice design of mass timber buildings in hot and humid climates. This research found that the durability of mass timber buildings located in hot and humid climates may benefit from implementing the Passivhaus standard to manage interior conditions. The findings also suggested that climate-specific design of the wall assembly is critical for mass timber buildings, in conjunction with excellent stormwater management practices during construction and corrosion protection for metallic fasteners.
Subject: Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry Keywords: Azolium MOFs; Dye adsorption; Post modification; Cross-coupling reactions
Online: 30 November 2020 (14:14:52 CET)
Two ligands, 1, 3-bis(4-carboxyphenyl)imidazolium chloride and 4, 4՛-bipyridine, were employed to prepare nickel and zinc azolium based MOFs, 1 and 2 by the mixed ligand solvothermal approach. The positively charged azolium moieties in the imidazolium linker resulted in a charged environment in the as-synthesized frameworks. As a result, 1 and 2 demonstrated preferential adsorption of CO2 over methane molecules in the gas phase adsorption due to the higher quadruple moment of CO2, which interacts more with the positively charged frameworks. Besides, in aqueous media, 1 and 2 exhibited incredible adsorption efficiency for anionic dyes. In the following, MOF 1 was metallated at the carbene site of the azolium linker to generate the novel heterogeneous catalyst 1-Pd, which was successfully applied for Sonogashira and Suzuki-Miyaura coupling reactions without losing its activity after three cycles.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202011.0194.v1
Subject: Chemistry, Analytical Chemistry Keywords: hydrogel; e-beam cross-linking; swelling; ibuprofen; network parameters
Online: 4 November 2020 (12:41:17 CET)
We report on the successful preparation of wet dressings hydrogels based on Chitosan-Poly(N-Vinyl-Pyrrolidone)-Poly(ethylene glycol)-Poly(acrylic acid) and Poly(ethylene oxide) by e-beam cross-linking in weakly acidic media, to be used for rapid healing and pain release of infected skin wounds. The structure and compositions of hydrogels investigated according to sol-gel and swelling studies, network parameters, as well as FTIR and XPS analyses showed the efficient interaction of the hydrogel components upon irradiation, maintaining the bonding environment while the cross-linking degree increasing with the irradiation dose and the formation of a structure with the mesh size in the range 11-67 nm. Hydrogels with gel fraction above 85% and the best-swelling properties in different pH solutions were obtained for hydrogels produced with 15 kGy. The hydrogels are stable in the simulated physiological condition of an infected wound and show appropriate moisture retention capability and the water vapor transmission rate up to 272.67 g m-2 day-1, to ensure fast healing. The hydrogels proved to have a significant loading capacity of ibuprofen (IBU), being able to incorporate a therapeutic dose for the treatment of severe pains. Simultaneously, IBU was released up to 25% in the first 2h, having a release maximum after 8h.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0178.v1
Subject: Behavioral Sciences, Applied Psychology Keywords: COVID-19; pandemics; quarantine; psychological distress; cross-sectional studies
Online: 8 October 2020 (13:14:13 CEST)
Mass crises are disruptive to people's mental health. The study aimed to explore mental distress during COVID-19 quarantine in a sample of university workers in Brazil. The survey included sets of questions about demographics, health, and support, an open question about major concerns, and the Clinical Outcome Routine Evaluation (CORE-OM), a measure of mental distress. 407 professionals participated in the study: mean age of 40 years (SD = 11.2), mostly female (67.8%), married (64.8%) and fulfilling social distancing to avoid COVID-19 infection (99%). Using the Consensual Qualitative Research for simple qualitative data (CQR-M) the main areas of concern were grouped into six domains, as follows: Work, Health, Isolation, Personal life and routine, Social environment, and Future. Many responses were multiple. They form categories indicating specific concerns within these domains. Quantitative data were analyzed by identifying the simple effects of potential predictors of mental distress. The results indicated medium effects of help with household chores, psychiatric treatment, age and physical exercise. Having someone available to listen was the only variable with a large effect in reducing mental suffering. The hybrid approach showed that the psychological experience during the pandemic is quite multifaceted and complex pointing new clues for public mental health.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0123.v1
Subject: Biology, Anatomy & Morphology Keywords: Reference evapotranspiration; agro-meteorological; multifractal; scaling; cross-correlations; persistence
Online: 6 October 2020 (11:17:39 CEST)
This paper examined the multifractal properties of six acknowledged agro-meteorological parameters, such as reference evapotranspiration (ET0), wind speed (U), incoming solar radiation (SR), air temperature (T), air pressure (P), and relative air humidity (RH) of five stations in California, USA. The investigation of multifractality of datasets from stations with differing terrain conditions: Dagget, Bakersfield, Santa Maria, Los Angeles and San Diego using the Multifractal Detrended Fluctuation Analysis showed the existence of a long term persistence and multifractality irrespective of the location. The scaling exponents of SR and ET0 time series are found to be higher for stations with higher altitudes. Subsequently, this study proposed using the novel multifractal cross correlation (MFCCA) method to examine the multiscale-multifractal correlations properties between ET0 and other investigated variables. MFCCA could successfully capture the scale dependent association of different variables and the dynamics in the nature of their associations from seasonal to multi-annual time scale. The multifractal exponents of pressure and relative air humidity are consistently lower than the exponents of ET0, irrespective of station location. This study found that joint scaling exponent was nearly the average of scaling exponents of individual series in different pairs of variables. Additionally, the α-values of joint multifractal spectrum were lower than the α values of both of the individual spectra, validating two universal properties in the mutifractal cross correlation studies for agro-meteorological time series. The temporal evolution of cross-correlation showed similar pattern for all pair-wise associations involving ET0, except for the RH-ET0 link.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202010.0082.v1
Subject: Engineering, Automotive Engineering Keywords: exploratory analysis; model selection; MLR; K fold cross validation
Online: 5 October 2020 (12:16:38 CEST)
In this project, we use a statistical multiple regression to study the impact of eight various predictors (relative compactness, surface area, wall area, roof area, overall height, orientation, glazing area, glazing area distribution) to estimate the cooling load energy efficiency of residential buildings. We try to analyze and visualize the effect of each predictor with each of the response variable using different classical statistical analysis tools used in describing linear models, in such a way so that we can find out the most strongly related predictor variables. Before starting all of this, we use the idea of model selection by stepwise regression technique and compare the AIC of these models and identified a better model between all of them. Then, we compare a classical linear regression approach by simulations on 768 diverse residential buildings show that we can predict CL with low mean absolute error. By using ANOVA we determine variation in the different residuals. Also, we use non constant variance test to verify it. Furthermore, we check leverage and influence points as well as outliers as well as determined cook distance for influential points. By taking box cox transformation and weights, we also introduce WLS technique to fit the model for better results and did all type of important analysis to understand the energy efficiency. Finally, we show 5-fold cross validation to verify our model.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202009.0416.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Keywords: adversarial learning; deep cross-modal hashing; self-attention mechanism
Online: 18 September 2020 (04:16:58 CEST)
Recently deep cross-modal hashing networks have received increasing interests due to its superior query efficiency and low storage cost. However, most of existing methods concentrate less on hash representations learning part, which means the semantic information of data cannot be fully used. Furthermore, they may neglect the high-ranking relevance and consistency of hash codes. To solve these problems, we propose a Self-Attention and Adversary Guided Hashing Network (SAAGHN). Specifically, it employs self-attention mechanism in hash representations learning part to extract rich semantic relevance information. Meanwhile, in order to keep invariability of hash codes, adversarial learning is adopted in the hash codes learning part. In addition, to generate higher-ranking hash codes and avoid local minima early, a new batch semi-hard cosine triplet loss and a cosine quantization loss are proposed. Extensive experiments on two benchmark datasets have shown that SAAGHN outperforms other baselines and achieves the state-of-the-art performance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0362.v1
Subject: Medicine & Pharmacology, General Medical Research Keywords: cross-sectional survey; antibiotic use; antimicrobial resistance; knowledge; brunei
Online: 23 May 2020 (05:54:43 CEST)
Background: Public misconception and demand for the indication of antibiotics could lead to inappropriate prescribing and consumption. Successful treatment can only be achieved when the public and industrial users have knowledge on antibiotic use and resistance. This survey is aimed to assess antibiotic usage and knowledge regarding antibiotics and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) among undergraduate students of Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), public university located in Brunei Darussalam. Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed using a self-administered questionnaire. The questionnaire was adapted from the World Health Organization (WHO) Antibiotic Resistance, Multi-country public awareness survey distributed online. Students at UBD were invited to participate in the online survey through internal email. The questionnaire consisted of 5 sections: demographic information, antibiotic usage, knowledge on antibiotics, antibiotic resistance (AMR) and use of antibiotics in agriculture. Data were analyzed descriptively and appropriate inferential statistics was used accordingly. Cronbach’s alpha was also done to determine the internal consistency. The section on antibiotic use and knowledge showed good internal consistency of Cronbach’s alpha 0.66 and 0.86 respectively. Research ethics approval was obtained from the PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD). Results: A total of 145 students returned the complete questionnaire. The result of the study found that 50% of the students had good level of knowledge of antibiotic and antimicrobial resistance with a mean total knowledge score of 11.4 out of 14. Respondents reported the use of antibiotic in the past (69%). Many of the students could identify the use of antibiotics for the treatment of bacterial infection. However, there were also students who incorrectly thought that antibiotics can be used for cold and flu (43%) and fever (41%). Moreover, 76% of the respondents mistakenly believed that antibiotic resistance is the result of the body becoming resistant to antibiotics. Only 12% of the respondents were found to have poor knowledge in the study. Conclusions: Misconceptions in regards to the use of antibiotics for conditions related to viral illnesses was noticed among the respondents in our study. Thus, improving knowledge on antibiotics is crucial to address those beliefs.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202001.0288.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Information Technology & Data Management Keywords: Cross-modal retrieval; Adversarial learning; Semantic correlation; Deep learning
Online: 24 January 2020 (15:03:34 CET)
With the rapid development of Internet and the widely usage of smart devices, massive multimedia data are generated, collected, stored and shared on the Internet. This trend makes cross-modal retrieval problem become a hot issue in this years. Many existing works pay attentions on correlation learning to generate a common subspace for cross-modal correlation measurement, and others uses adversarial learning technique to abate the heterogeneity of multi-modal data. However, very few works combine correlation learning and adversarial learning to bridge the inter-modal semantic gap and diminish cross-modal heterogeneity. This paper propose a novel cross-modal retrieval method, named ALSCOR, which is an end-to-end framework to integrate cross-modal representation learning, correlation learning and adversarial. CCA model, accompanied by two representation model, VisNet and TxtNet is proposed to capture non-linear correlation. Beside, intra-modal classifier and modality classifier are used to learn intra-modal discrimination and minimize the inter-modal heterogeneity. Comprehensive experiments are conducted on three benchmark datasets. The results demonstrate that the proposed ALSCOR has better performance than the state-of-the-arts.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0160.v1
Subject: Mathematics & Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence & Robotics Keywords: Siamese neural network, appearance model, contrastive loss, cross entropy.
Online: 13 May 2019 (13:32:25 CEST)
An appearance model plays a crucial rule in multi-target tracking. In traditional approaches, the two steps of appearance modeling i.e visual representation and statistically similarity measure are modeled separately. Visual representation is achieved either through hand-crafted features or deep features and statically similarity is measure through a cross entropy loss function. A loss function based on cross-entropy (KL-divergence, mutual information) find closely related probability distribution for the targets. However, if the targets have similar visual representation, it ends up mixing the targets. To tackle this problem, we come up with a synergetic appearance model named Single Shot Appearance Model based on Siamese neural network. The network is trained with a contrastive loss function for finding the similarity between different targets in a single shot. The input to the network is two target patches and based on their similarity, a contrastive score is output by the network. The proposed model is evaluated on accumulative dissimilarity metric on three datasets. Quantitatively, promising results are achieved against three baseline methods.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201904.0118.v1
Subject: Life Sciences, Immunology Keywords: Receptor-specific antibodies; targeting; nanoparticles; dendritic cells; cross-presentation
Online: 10 April 2019 (07:46:18 CEST)
Abstract Optimal targeting of nanoparticles (NP) to dendritic cells (DCs) receptors to deliver cancer-specific antigens is key to an efficient induction of anti-tumor immune responses. Poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles containing tètanus toxoid and gp100 melanoma-associated antigen, toll-like receptor adjuvants were targeted to the DC-SIGN receptor in DCs by specific humanized antibodies or by ICAM3-Fc fusion proteins mimicking natural ligand. Despite higher binding and uptake efficacy of anti-DC-SIGN antibody-targeted NP vaccines than ICAM3-Fc ligand, no difference were observed in DC activation markers CD80, CD83, CD86 and CCR7 induced. DCs loaded with NP coated with ICAM3-Fc appeared more potent in activating T cells via cross-presentation than antibody-coated NP vaccines. This fact could be very crucial in the design of new cancer vaccines.