• Genetic heterogeneity of hepatitis E virus in Darfur, Sudan, and neighboring Chad.

      Nicand, E; Armstrong, G L; Enouf, V; Guthmann, J P; Guerin, J P; Caron, M; Nizou, J Y; Andraghetti, R; National Reference Centre for Hepatitis E, Teaching Military Hospital Val de Grâce, Paris, France. en.biol-vdg@filnet.fr (2005-12)
      The within-outbreak diversity of hepatitis E virus (HEV) was studied during the outbreak of hepatitis E that occurred in Sudan in 2004. Specimens were collected from internally displaced persons living in a Sudanese refugee camp and two camps implanted in Chad. A comparison of the sequences in the ORF2 region of 23 Sudanese isolates and five HEV samples from the two Chadian camps displayed a high similarity (>99.7%) to strains belonging to Genotype 1. But four isolates collected in one of the Chadian camps were close to Genotype 2. Circulation of divergent strains argues for possible multiple sources of infection.
    • Genomic History of the seventh Pandemic of Cholera in Africa

      Weill, FX; Domman, D; Njamkepo, E; Tarr, C; Rauzier, J; Fawal, N; Keddy, KH; Salje, H; Moore, S; Mukhopadhyay, AK; et al. (American Association for the Advancement of Science, 2017-11-10)
      The seventh cholera pandemic has heavily affected Africa, although the origin and continental spread of the disease remain undefined. We used genomic data from 1070 Vibrio cholerae O1 isolates, across 45 African countries and over a 49-year period, to show that past epidemics were attributable to a single expanded lineage. This lineage was introduced at least 11 times since 1970, into two main regions, West Africa and East/Southern Africa, causing epidemics that lasted up to 28 years. The last five introductions into Africa, all from Asia, involved multidrug-resistant sublineages that replaced antibiotic-susceptible sublineages after 2000. This phylogenetic framework describes the periodicity of lineage introduction and the stable routes of cholera spread, which should inform the rational design of control measures for cholera in Africa.
    • Genomic Insights into the 2016-2017 Cholera Epidemic in Yemen

      Weill, FX; Domman, D; Njamkepo, E; Almesbahi, AA; Naji, M; Nasher, SS; Rakesh, A; Assiri, AM; Sharma, NC; Kariuki, S; et al. (Nature Publishing Group, 2019-01-02)
      Yemen is currently experiencing, to our knowledge, the largest cholera epidemic in recent history. The first cases were declared in September 2016, and over 1.1 million cases and 2,300 deaths have since been reported1. Here we investigate the phylogenetic relationships, pathogenesis and determinants of antimicrobial resistance by sequencing the genomes of Vibrio cholerae isolates from the epidemic in Yemen and recent isolates from neighbouring regions. These 116 genomic sequences were placed within the phylogenetic context of a global collection of 1,087 isolates of the seventh pandemic V. cholerae serogroups O1 and O139 biotype El Tor2-4. We show that the isolates from Yemen that were collected during the two epidemiological waves of the epidemic1-the first between 28 September 2016 and 23 April 2017 (25,839 suspected cases) and the second beginning on 24 April 2017 (more than 1 million suspected cases)-are V. cholerae serotype Ogawa isolates from a single sublineage of the seventh pandemic V. cholerae O1 El Tor (7PET) lineage. Using genomic approaches, we link the epidemic in Yemen to global radiations of pandemic V. cholerae and show that this sublineage originated from South Asia and that it caused outbreaks in East Africa before appearing in Yemen. Furthermore, we show that the isolates from Yemen are susceptible to several antibiotics that are commonly used to treat cholera and to polymyxin B, resistance to which is used as a marker of the El Tor biotype.
    • Geographic Distribution and Mortality Risk Factors during the Cholera Outbreak in a Rural Region of Haiti, 2010-2011

      Page, Anne-Laure; Ciglenecki, Iza; Jasmin, Ernest Robert; Desvignes, Laurence; Grandesso, Francesco; Polonsky, Jonathan; Nicholas, Sarala; Alberti, Kathryn P; Porten, Klaudia; Luquero, Francisco J (Public Library of Science, 2015-03-26)
      In 2010 and 2011, Haiti was heavily affected by a large cholera outbreak that spread throughout the country. Although national health structure-based cholera surveillance was rapidly initiated, a substantial number of community cases might have been missed, particularly in remote areas. We conducted a community-based survey in a large rural, mountainous area across four districts of the Nord department including areas with good versus poor accessibility by road, and rapid versus delayed response to the outbreak to document the true cholera burden and assess geographic distribution and risk factors for cholera mortality.
    • Global epidemiology of invasive meningococcal disease

      Jafri, Rabab Z; Ali, Asad; Messonnier, Nancy E; Tevi-Benissan, Carol; Durrheim, David; Eskola, Juhani; Fermon, Florence; Klugman, Keith P; Ramsay, Mary; Sow, Samba; et al. (BioMed Central, 2013-09-10)
      Neisseria meningitidis is one of the leading causes of bacterial meningitis globally and can also cause sepsis, pneumonia, and other manifestations. In countries with high endemic rates, the disease burden places an immense strain on the public health system. The worldwide epidemiology of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) varies markedly by region and over time. This review summarizes the burden of IMD in different countries and identifies the highest-incidence countries where routine preventive programs against Neisseria meningitidis would be most beneficial in providing protection. Available epidemiological data from the past 20 years in World Health Organization and European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control collections and published articles are included in this review, as well as direct communications with leading experts in the field. Countries were grouped into high-, moderate-, and low-incidence countries. The majority of countries in the high-incidence group are found in the African meningitis belt; many moderate-incidence countries are found in the European and African regions, and Australia, while low-incidence countries include many from Europe and the Americas. Priority countries for vaccine intervention are high- and moderate-incidence countries where vaccine-preventable serogroups predominate. Epidemiological data on burden of IMD are needed in countries where this is not known, particularly in South- East Asia and Eastern Mediterranean regions, so evidence-based decisions about the use of meningococcal vaccines can be made.
    • Global Phylogeography and Evolutionary History of Shigella Dysenteriae Type 1

      Njamkepo, E; Fawal, N; Tran-Dien, A; Hawkey, J; Strockbine, N; Jenkins, C; Talukder, KA; Bercion, R; Kuleshov, K; Kolínská, R; et al. (Nature Publishing Group, 2016-03-21)
      Together with plague, smallpox and typhus, epidemics of dysentery have been a major scourge of human populations for centuries(1). A previous genomic study concluded that Shigella dysenteriae type 1 (Sd1), the epidemic dysentery bacillus, emerged and spread worldwide after the First World War, with no clear pattern of transmission(2). This is not consistent with the massive cyclic dysentery epidemics reported in Europe during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries(1,3,4) and the first isolation of Sd1 in Japan in 1897(5). Here, we report a whole-genome analysis of 331 Sd1 isolates from around the world, collected between 1915 and 2011, providing us with unprecedented insight into the historical spread of this pathogen. We show here that Sd1 has existed since at least the eighteenth century and that it swept the globe at the end of the nineteenth century, diversifying into distinct lineages associated with the First World War, Second World War and various conflicts or natural disasters across Africa, Asia and Central America. We also provide a unique historical perspective on the evolution of antibiotic resistance over a 100-year period, beginning decades before the antibiotic era, and identify a prevalent multiple antibiotic-resistant lineage in South Asia that was transmitted in several waves to Africa, where it caused severe outbreaks of disease.
    • Handle Survivors with Care

      Sprecher, A (Massachusetts Medical Society, 2017-10-12)
    • Having and Fighting Ebola - Public Health Lessons from a Clinician Turned Patient

      Spencer, Craig (Massachusetts Medical Society, 2015-03-19)
    • Hepatitis B virus in the Lao People's Democratic Republic: A Cross Sectional Serosurvey in Different Cohorts.

      Black, Antony P; Nouanthong, Phonethipsavanh; Nanthavong, Naphavan; Souvannaso, Chanthasone; Vilivong, Keooudomphone; Jutavijittum, Prapan; Samountry, Bounthome; Lütteke, Nina; Hübschen, Judith M; Goossens, Sylvie; et al. (BioMed Central (Springer Science), 2014-08-23)
      Despite hepatitis B vaccination at birth and at 6, 10 and 14 weeks of age, hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection continues to be endemic in the Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR). We carried out a cross-sectional serological study in infants, pre-school children, school pupils and pregnant women to determine their burden of disease, risk of infection and vaccination status.
    • Hepatitis C Virus Diagnosis and the Holy Grail

      Applegate, TL; Fajardo, E; Sacks, JA (Elsevier, 2018-06)
      The world has embraced the call for global elimination of hepatitis C virus by 2030. The unprecedented speed of therapeutic development and increased access to direct-acting antivirals has made elimination a possibility. We must screen hundreds of millions of people to diagnose and treat those currently infected. Global access to hepatitis C virus diagnostics will be a keystone to success. Key challenges must be overcome and systems optimized to ensure widespread access to existing diagnostics. Although promising technologies may soon transform the landscape, innovative strategies are needed to stimulate investment and accelerate the development of point-of-care hepatitis C virus diagnostics.
    • Hepatitis E should be considered a neglected tropical disease.

      Asman, AS; Ciglenecki, I; Wamala, JF; Lynch, J; Aggarwal, R; Rahman, M; Wong, S; Serafini, M; Moussa, AM; Dalton, HR; et al. (Public Library of Science, 2019-07-25)
    • Hepatitis E, Central African Republic.

      Escribà, J M; Nakoune, E; Recio, C; Massamba, P M; Matsika-Claquin, M D; Goumba, C; Rose, A M C; Nicand, E; García, E; Leklegban, C; et al. (2008-04)
    • Hepatitis E: Urgent Action Needed

      Ciglenecki, I (Elsevier, 2017-03)
    • High Hepatitis E Seroprevalence Among Displaced Persons in South Sudan

      Azman, A; Bouhenia, M; Iyer, A; Rumunu, J; Laku, R; Wamala, J; Rodriguez-Barraquer, I; Lessler, J; Gignoux, E; Luquero, F; et al. (American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2017-06)
      AbstractLarge protracted outbreaks of hepatitis E virus (HEV) have been documented in displaced populations in Africa over the past decade though data are limited outside these exceptional settings. Serological studies can provide insights useful for improving surveillance and disease control. We conducted an age-stratified serological survey using samples previously collected for another research study from 206 residents of an internally displaced person camp in Juba, South Sudan. We tested serum for anti-HEV antibodies (IgM and IgG) and estimated the prevalence of recent and historical exposure to the virus. Using data on individuals' serostatus, camp arrival date, and state of origin, we used catalytic transmission models to estimate the relative risk of HEV infection in the camp compared with that in the participants' home states. The age-adjusted seroprevalence of anti-HEV IgG was 71% (95% confidence interval = 63-78), and 4% had evidence of recent exposure (IgM). We estimated HEV exposure rates to be more than 2-fold (hazard ratio = 2.3, 95% credible interval = 0.3-5.8) higher in the camp than in the participants' home states, although this difference was not statistically significant. HEV transmission may be higher than previously appreciated, even in the absence of reported cases. Improved surveillance in similar settings is needed to understand the burden of disease and minimize epidemic impact through early detection and response.
    • High incidence of subcutaneous emphysema in children in a Somali refugee cAMP during measles outbreak.

      Moons, Peter; Thallinger, Monica (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2014-01)
      During an outbreak of measles in a refugee camp in Ethiopia, 9 patients (age range 4 months to 18 years) were diagnosed with subcutaneous emphysema. Incidence of this rare complication of measles in this refugee camp was higher than previously reported. We hypothesize that the high incidence is most likely related to poor physical state of the refugee population with high rates of malnutrition.
    • High mortality associated with an outbreak of hepatitis E among displaced persons in Darfur, Sudan

      Boccia, Delia; Guthmann, Jean-Paul; Klovstad, Hilde; Hamid, Nuha; Tatay, Mercedes; Ciglenecki, Iza; Nizou, Jacques-Yves; Nicand, Elisabeth; Guerin, Philippe Jean; European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training, Stockholm, Sweden; Health Protection Agency–Centre for Infection, London, United Kingdom; Epicentre, Paris, France; Medecins Sans Frontieres, Paris, France; National Reference Centre of Enterically Transmitted Hepatitis (Hepatitis E Virus), Teaching Military Hospital Val de Grace, Paris, France; Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Oslo, Norway; Norwegian Field Epidemiology Training Programme, Oslo, Norway; World Health Organization, Khartoum, Sudan (2006-05-12)
      BACKGROUND: Hepatitis E virus (HEV) causes acute onset of jaundice and a high case-fatality ratio in pregnant women. We provide a clinical description of hospitalized case patients and assess the specific impact on pregnant women during a large epidemic of HEV infection in a displaced population in Mornay camp (78,800 inhabitants), western Darfur, Sudan. METHODS: We reviewed hospital records. A sample of 20 clinical cases underwent laboratory confirmation. These patients were tested for immunoglobulin G (IgG) and immunoglobulin M (IgM) antibody to HEV (serum) and for amplification of the HEV genome (serum and stool). We performed a cross-sectional survey in the community to determine the attack rate and case-fatality ratio in pregnant women. RESULTS: Over 6 months, 253 HEV cases were recorded at the hospital, of which 61 (24.1%) were in pregnant women. A total of 72 cases (39.1% of those for whom clinical records were available) had a diagnosis of hepatic encephalopathy. Of the 45 who died (case-fatality ratio, 17.8%), 19 were pregnant women (specific case-fatality ratio, 31.1%). Acute hepatitis E was confirmed in 95% (19/20) of cases sampled; 18 case-patients were positive for IgG (optical density ratio > or =3), for IgM (optical density ratio >2 ), or for both, whereas 1 was negative for IgG and IgM but positive for HEV RNA in serum. The survey identified 220 jaundiced women among the 1133 pregnant women recorded over 3 months (attack rate, 19.4%). A total of 18 deaths were recorded among these jaundiced pregnant women (specific case-fatality ratio, 8.2%). CONCLUSIONS: This large epidemic of HEV infection illustrates the dramatic impact of this disease on pregnant women. Timely interventions and a vaccine are urgently needed to prevent mortality in this special group.
    • High mortality in displaced populations of northern Uganda.

      Nathan, N; Tatay, M; Piola, P; Lake, S; Brown, V (Elsevier, 2004-04-24)
    • High Prevalence of Shigella or Enteroinvasive Escherichia coli Carriage among Residents of an Internally Displaced Persons Camp in South Sudan

      Bliss, J; Bouhenia, M; Hale, P; Couturier, BA; Iyer, AS; Rumunu, J; Martin, S; Wamala, JF; Abubakar, A; Sack, DA; et al. (American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2017-12-04)
      Displaced persons living in camps are at an increased risk of diarrheal diseases. Subclinical carriage of pathogens may contribute to the spread of disease, especially for microbes that require a low infectious dose. Multiplex real-time polymerase chain reaction was performed to detect a panel of 20 bacterial, viral, and protozoal targets, and we report a high prevalence of enteropathogen carriage, including Shigella spp. or enteroinvasive Escherichia coli in 14%, among a sample of 88 asymptomatic individuals in an internally displaced persons camp in South Sudan. Further studies are needed to determine the contribution of such carriage to the spread of disease.
    • High sensitivity and specificity of the Pastorex latex agglutination test for Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A during a clinical trial in Niger.

      Borel, T; Rose, A M C; Guillerm, M; Sidikou, F; Gerstl, S; Djibo, A; Nathan, N; Chanteau, S; Guerin, P J; Epicentre, 8 rue St Sabin, 75011 Paris, France. (2006-10)
      There is a great need for a rapid diagnostic test to guide vaccine choice during outbreaks of meningococcal meningitis in resource-poor countries. During a randomised clinical trial conducted during an epidemic of Neisseria meningitidis serogroup A in Niger in 2003, the sensitivity and specificity of the Pastorex latex agglutination test for this serogroup under optimal field conditions were assessed, using culture and/or PCR as the gold standard. Results from 484 samples showed a sensitivity of 88% (95% CI 85-91%) and a specificity of 93% (95% CI 90-95%). Pastorex could be a good alternative to current methods, as it can be performed in a local laboratory with rapid results and is highly specific. Sensitivity can be improved with prior microscopy where feasible. A study specifically to evaluate the Pastorex test under epidemic conditions, using laboratories with limited resources, is recommended.
    • High Seroconversion Rates in Trypanosoma Cruzi Chronic Infection Treated with Benznidazole in People Under 16 Years in Guatemala

      Brum-Soares, L; Cubides, JC; Burgos, I; Monroy, C; Castillo, L; González, S; Viñas, PA; Urrutia, PP (Scielo Brasil, 2016-12-01)
      Geographical, epidemiological, and environmental differences associated with therapeutic response to Chagas etiological treatment have been previously discussed. This study describes high seroconversion rates 72 months after benznidazole treatment in patients under 16 years from a project implemented by Doctors without Borders in Guatemala.