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United States
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Salmon-Mulanovich G.,Naval Medical Research Unit No 6 | Lescano A.G.,U.S. Navy | Bausch D.G.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | Bausch D.G.,Cayetano Heredia Peruvian University | And 2 more authors.
American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene | Year: 2015

Dengue virus (DENV) was reintroduced to Peru in the 1990s and has been reported in Puerto Maldonado (population ∼65,000) in the Peruvian southern Amazon basin since 2000. This region also has the highest human migration rate in the country, mainly from areas not endemic for DENV. The objective of this study was to assess the proportion of household income that is diverted to costs incurred because of dengue illness and to compare these expenses between recent migrants (RMs) and long-term residents (LTRs). We administered a standardized questionnaire to persons diagnosed with dengue illness at Hospital Santa Rosa in Puerto Maldonado from December 2012 to March 2013. We compared direct and indirect medical costs between RMs and LTRs. A total of 80 participants completed the survey, of whom 28 (35%) were RMs and 52 (65%) were LTRs. Each dengue illness episode cost the household an average of US$105 (standard deviation [SD] = 107), representing 24% of their monthly income. Indirect costs were the greatest expense (US$56, SD = 87), especially lost wages. The proportion of household income diverted to dengue illness did not differ significantly between RM and LTR households. The study highlights the significant financial burden incurred by households when a family member suffers dengue illness. Copyright © 2015 by The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.


McCollum A.M.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | McCollum A.M.,Atlanta Research and Education Foundation | Soberon V.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | Salas C.J.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | And 9 more authors.
Malaria Journal | Year: 2014

Background: Plasmodium vivax is a predominant species of malaria in parts of South America and there is increasing resistance to drugs to treat infections by P. vivax. The existence of latent hypnozoites further complicates the ability to classify recurrent infections as treatment failures due to relapse, recrudescence of hyponozoites or re-infections. Antigen loci are putatively under natural selection and may not be an optimal molecular marker to define parasite haplotypes in paired samples. Putatively neutral microsatellite loci, however, offer an assessment of neutral haplotypes. The objective here was to assess the utility of neutral microsatellite loci to reconcile cases of recurrent parasitaemia in Amazonian P. vivax populations in Peru. Methods. Patient blood samples were collected from three locations in or around Iquitos in the Peruvian Amazon. Five putatively neutral microsatellite loci were characterized from 445 samples to ascertain the within and amongst population variation. A total of 30 day 0 and day of recurrent parasitaemia samples were characterized at microsatellite loci and five polymorphic antigen loci for haplotype classification. Results: The genetic diversity at microsatellite loci was consistent with neutral levels of variation measured in other South American P. vivax populations. Results between antigen and microsatellite loci for the 30 day 0 and day of recurrent parasitaemia samples were the same for 80% of the pairs. The majority of non-concordant results were the result of differing alleles at microsatellite loci. This analysis estimates that 90% of the paired samples with the same microsatellite haplotype are unlikely to be due to a new infection. Conclusions: A population-level approach was used to yield a better estimate of the probability of a new infection versus relapse or recrudescence of homologous hypnozoites; hypnozoite activation was common for this cohort. Population studies are critical with the evaluation of genetic markers to assess P. vivax biology and epidemiology. The additional demonstration of microsatellite loci as neutral markers capable of distinguishing the origin of the recurrent parasites (new infection or originating from the patient) lends support to their use in assessment of treatment outcomes. © 2014 McCollum et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Riddle M.S.,Naval Medical Research Center | Rockabrand D.M.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | Schlett C.,Bethesda University | Monteville M.R.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | And 3 more authors.
American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene | Year: 2011

To better understand the epidemiology of diarrhea in deployed personnel to the Middle East, a prospective cohort study of travelers' diarrhea (TD) was conducted between May 2004 and January 2005 at the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) camp in the southern Sinai. A baseline entry questionnaire and stool specimen was provided on study entry, and volunteers were followed every 6 weeks. Of 211 volunteers, 145 (68.7%) completed one or more follow-up visits. In total, 416 follow-up surveys were completed, which described an overall incidence of 25.2 episodes per 100 person months (95% confidence interval = 21.2-30.0). Additionally, stools were collected in 72 of 77 diarrhea-associated clinic visits, with bacterial pathogens most commonly isolated (enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli in 30 [42%] samples and Campylobacter jejuni in 7 [10%] samples) Despite modern preventive methods, diarrhea is still a common problem for deployed US military personnel in Egypt, frequently resulting in diminished ability to work. Copyright © 2011 by The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.


Chenet S.M.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | Chenet S.M.,Arizona State University | Tapia L.L.,Naval Medical Research Unit No | Escalante A.A.,Arizona State University | And 4 more authors.
Malaria Journal | Year: 2012

Background: A major concern in malaria vaccine development is genetic polymorphisms typically observed among Plasmodium isolates in different geographical areas across the world. Highly polymorphic regions have been observed in Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax antigenic surface proteins such as Circumsporozoite protein (CSP), Duffy-binding protein (DBP), Merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1), Apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA-1) and Thrombospondin related anonymous protein (TRAP). Methods. Genetic variability was assessed in important polymorphic regions of various vaccine candidate antigens in P. vivax among 106 isolates from the Amazon Region of Loreto, Peru. In addition, genetic diversity determined in Peruvian isolates was compared to population studies from various geographical locations worldwide. Results: The structured diversity found in P. vivax populations did not show a geographic pattern and haplotypes from all gene candidates were distributed worldwide. In addition, evidence of balancing selection was found in polymorphic regions of the trap, dbp and ama-1 genes. Conclusions: It is important to have a good representation of the haplotypes circulating worldwide when implementing a vaccine, regardless of the geographic region of deployment since selective pressure plays an important role in structuring antigen diversity. © 2012 Chenet et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Leptospirosis is a potentially lethal zoonosis mainly affecting low-resource tropical countries, including Peru and its neighbouring countries. Timely diagnosis of leptospirosis is critical but may be challenging in the regions where it is most prevalent. The serodiagnostic gold standard microagglutination test (MAT) may be technically prohibitive. Our objective in this study was to assess the sensitivity, specificity, and predictive value of an IgM antibody capture enzyme-linked immunoassay (MAC-ELISA) derived from the M20 strain of Leptospira interrogans serovar Copenhageni (M20) by comparison to MAT, which was used as the gold standard method of diagnosis.Acute and convalescent sera from participants participating in a passive febrile surveillance study in multiple regions of Peru were tested by both IgM MAC-ELISA and MAT. The sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive value (PPV, NPV) of the MAC-ELISA assay for acute, convalescent and paired sera by comparison to MAT were calculated.The sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of the MAC-ELISA assay for acute sera were 92.3%, 56.0%, 35.3% and 96.6% respectively. For convalescent sera, the sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of the MAC-ELISA assay were 93.3%, 51.5%, 63.6% and 89.5% respectively. For paired sera, the sensitivity, specificity, PPV and NPV of the MAC-ELISA assay were 93.6%, 37.5%, 59.2%, 85.7% respectively.The M20 MAC-ELISA assay performed with a high sensitivity and low specificity in the acute phase of illness. Sensitivity was similar as compared with MAT in the convalescent phase and specificity remained low. Paired sera were the most sensitive but least specific by comparison to MAT serodiagnosis. NPV for acute, convalescent and paired sera was high. The limited specificity and high sensitivity of the MAC-ELISA IgM suggests that it would be most valuable to exclude leptospirosis in low-resource regions that lack immediate access to definitive reference laboratory techniques such as MAT.


PubMed | Naval Medical Research Unit No
Type: | Journal: U.S. Army Medical Department journal | Year: 2010

The 5 Department of Defense (DoD) overseas laboratories conduct research on a vast array of infectious diseases. This commentary focuses on the role of the Naval Medical Research Unit No. 3 (NAMRU-3, Cairo, Egypt) in influenza surveillance and research, with emphasis on the role of the comparative medicine (US Army military occupational specialty 64E) veterinarian assigned there. Every year, tens of thousands of members of the US Armed Forces are vaccinated for so-called seasonal influenza. The vaccine used is reformulated annually, based on antigenic characterization of viral isolates generated through global surveillance. NAMRU-3 contributes to this global surveillance for the Eastern Mediterranean region. The emergence of H5N1 Highly-pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) and concerns over its possible role in precipitating a pandemic have accentuated the role of veterinarians with field and laboratory diagnostics experience in this system.


Chloroquine-resistant Plasmodium falciparum was first described in the Republic of Vanuatu in the early 1980s. In 1991, the Vanuatu Ministry of Health instituted new treatment guidelines for uncomplicated P. falciparum infection consisting of chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine combination therapy. Chloroquine remains the recommended treatment for Plasmodium vivax.In 2005, cross-sectional blood surveys at 45 sites on Malo Island were conducted and 4,060 adults and children screened for malaria. Of those screened, 203 volunteer study subjects without malaria at the time of screening were followed for 13 weeks to observe peak seasonal incidence of infection. Another 54 subjects with malaria were followed over a 28-day period to determine efficacy of anti-malarial therapy; chloroquine alone for P. vivax and chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine for P. falciparum infections.The overall prevalence of parasitaemia by mass blood screening was 6%, equally divided between P. falciparum and P. vivax. Twenty percent and 23% of participants with patent P. vivax and P. falciparum parasitaemia, respectively, were febrile at the time of screening. In the incidence study cohort, after 2,303 person-weeks of follow-up, the incidence density of malaria was 1.3 cases per person-year with P. vivax predominating. Among individuals participating in the clinical trial, the 28-day chloroquine P. vivax cure rate was 100%. The 28-day chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine P. falciparum cure rate was 97%. The single treatment failure, confirmed by merozoite surface protein-2 genotyping, was classified as a day 28 late parasitological treatment failure. All P. falciparum isolates carried the Thr-76 pfcrt mutant allele and the double Asn-108 + Arg-59 dhfr mutant alleles. Dhps mutant alleles were not detected in the study sample.Peak seasonal malaria prevalence on Malo Island reached hypoendemic levels during the study observation period. The only in vivo malaria drug efficacy trial thus far published from the Republic of Vanuatu showed chloroquine/sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine combination therapy for P. falciparum and chloroquine alone for P. vivax to be highly efficacious. Although the chloroquine-resistant pfcrt allele was present in all P. falciparum isolates, mutant alleles in the dhfr and dhps genes do not yet occur to the extent required to confer sulphadoxine-pyrimethamine resistance in this population.


PubMed | Naval Medical Research Unit No
Type: | Journal: Malaria journal | Year: 2012

A major concern in malaria vaccine development is genetic polymorphisms typically observed among Plasmodium isolates in different geographical areas across the world. Highly polymorphic regions have been observed in Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax antigenic surface proteins such as Circumsporozoite protein (CSP), Duffy-binding protein (DBP), Merozoite surface protein-1 (MSP-1), Apical membrane antigen-1 (AMA-1) and Thrombospondin related anonymous protein (TRAP).Genetic variability was assessed in important polymorphic regions of various vaccine candidate antigens in P. vivax among 106 isolates from the Amazon Region of Loreto, Peru. In addition, genetic diversity determined in Peruvian isolates was compared to population studies from various geographical locations worldwide.The structured diversity found in P. vivax populations did not show a geographic pattern and haplotypes from all gene candidates were distributed worldwide. In addition, evidence of balancing selection was found in polymorphic regions of the trap, dbp and ama-1 genes.It is important to have a good representation of the haplotypes circulating worldwide when implementing a vaccine, regardless of the geographic region of deployment since selective pressure plays an important role in structuring antigen diversity.

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