West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center

Glasgow, United Kingdom

West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center

Glasgow, United Kingdom

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Pebody R.G.,Public Health England | Warburton F.,Public Health England | Ellis J.,Public Health England | Andrews N.,Public Health England | And 11 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2015

In 2014/15 the United Kingdom experienced circulation of influenza A(H3N2) with impact in the elderly. Midseason vaccine effectiveness (VE) shows an adjusted VE of 3.4% (95% CI: −44.8 to 35.5) against primary care consultation with laboratory-confirmed influenza and −2.3% (95% CI: −56.2 to 33.0) for A(H3N2). The low VE reflects mismatch between circulating viruses and the 2014/15 northern hemisphere A(H3N2) vaccine strain. Early use of antivirals for prophylaxis and treatment of vulnerable populations remains important.

Hardelid P.,Public Health England | Mcmenamin J.,Health Protection Scotland | Andrews N.,Public Health England | Robertson C.,Health Protection Scotland | And 7 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2011

Following the global spread of pandemic influenza A(H1N1)2009, several pandemic vaccines have been rapidly developed. The United Kingdom and many other countries in the northern hemisphere implemented seasonal and pandemic influenza vaccine programmes in October 2009. We present the results of a case-control study to estimate effectiveness of such vaccines in preventing confirmed pandemic influenza infection. Some 5,982 individuals with influenza-like illness seen in general practices between November 2009 and January 2010 were enrolled. Those testing positive on PCR for pandemic influenza were assigned as cases and those testing negative as controls. Vaccine effectiveness was estimated as the relative reduction in odds of confirmed infection between vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals. Fourteen or more days after immunisation with the pandemic vaccine, adjusted vaccine effectiveness (VE) was 72% (95% confidence interval (CI): 21% to 90%). If protection was assumed to start after seven or more days, the adjusted VE was 71% (95% CI: 37% to 87%). Pandemic influenza vaccine was highly effective in preventing confirmed infection with pandemic influenza A(H1N1)2009 from one week after vaccination. No evidence of effectiveness against pandemic influenza A(H1N1)2009 was found for the 2009/10 trivalent seasonal influenza vaccine (adjusted VE of -30% (95% CI: -89% to 11%)).

Adamson W.E.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | Maddi S.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | Robertson C.,Health Protection Scotland | Robertson C.,University of Strathclyde | And 4 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2010

We determined the age- and location-specific seroprevalence of antibodies against 2009 pandemic influenza A(H1N1) virus in Scotland following the first two waves of infection. Serum samples collected following the winter outbreak were analysed by microneutralisation assay. The proportion of positive sera varied significantly between cities and, in the case of Inverness, between age groups (with younger adults more likely to be positive than older individuals). This study demonstrates that older people are no longer more likely to have antibodies against the virus than younger adults.

Gadsby N.J.,Royal Infirmary | Reynolds A.J.,Health Protection Scotland | McMenamin J.,Health Protection Scotland | Gunson R.N.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | And 4 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2012

In common with reports from other European countries, we describe a substantial increase in the number of laboratory reports of Mycoplasma pneumoniae in Scotland in 2010 and 2011. The highest number of reports came from those aged one year and younger. However, reports from young children were more likely to come from PCR testing than serological testing.

Bennett S.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | Harvala H.,Royal Infirmary | Harvala H.,University of Edinburgh | Witteveldt J.,Royal Infirmary | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Microbiology | Year: 2011

Enteroviruses (EVs) are recognized as the major etiological agent in meningitis in children and young adults. The use of molecular techniques, such as PCR, has substantially improved the sensitivity of enterovirus detection compared to that of virus culture methods. PCR-based methods also can detect a much wider range of EV variants, including those within species A, as well as human parechoviruses (HPeVs) that often grow poorly in vitro and which previously have been underdiagnosed by traditional methods. To exploit these developments, we developed a real-time one-step reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR) for the rapid and sensitive detection of EV and HPeV in clinical specimens. Two commercially available RT-PCR kits were used (method I, Platinum one-step kit; method II, Express qPCR one-step kit) with primers and probes targeting the EV and HPeV 5′-untranslated regions (5′UTR). Amplification dynamics (threshold cycle [CT]values and efficiencies) of absolutely quantified full-length RNA transcripts representative of EV species A to D and HPeV were similar, demonstrating the effectiveness of both assays across the range of currently described human EV and HPeV variants. Probit analysis of multiple endpoint replicates demonstrated comparable sensitivities of the assays for EV and HPeV (method I, approximately 10 copies per reaction for both targets; method II, 20 copies per reaction). CT values were highly reproducible on repeat testing of positive controls within assays and between assay runs. Considering the sample turnaround time of less than 3 h, the multiplexed one-step RT-PCR method provides rapid diagnostic testing for EV and HPeV in cases of suspected central nervous system infections in a clinically relevant time frame. Copyright © 2011, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

Sridhar S.,Imperial College London | Begom S.,Imperial College London | Bermingham A.,Public Health England | Hoschler K.,Public Health England | And 6 more authors.
Nature Medicine | Year: 2013

The role of T cells in mediating heterosubtypic protection against natural influenza illness in humans is uncertain. The 2009 H1N1 pandemic (pH1N1) provided a unique natural experiment to determine whether crossreactive cellular immunity limits symptomatic illness in antibody-naive individuals. We followed 342 healthy adults through the UK pandemic waves and correlated the responses of pre-existing T cells to the pH1N1 virus and conserved core protein epitopes with clinical outcomes after incident pH1N1 infection. Higher frequencies of pre-existing T cells to conserved CD8 epitopes were found in individuals who developed less severe illness, with total symptom score having the strongest inverse correlation with the frequency of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) + interleukin-2 (IL-2) - CD8 + T cells (r = -0.6, P = 0.004). Within this functional CD8 + IFN-γ + IL-2 - population, cells with the CD45RA + chemokine (C-C) receptor 7 (CCR7) - phenotype inversely correlated with symptom score and had lung-homing and cytotoxic potential. In the absence of crossreactive neutralizing antibodies, CD8 + T cells specific to conserved viral epitopes correlated with crossprotection against symptomatic influenza. This protective immune correlate could guide universal influenza vaccine development. © 2013 Nature America, Inc. All rights reserved.

Jazayeri S.M.,Tehran University of Medical Sciences | Alavian S.M.,Baqiyatallah Medical Sciences University | Carman W.F.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center
Journal of Viral Hepatitis | Year: 2010

The pathogenesis of hepatitis B virus (HBV) is complex and it appears that molecular variants play a role in this process. HBV undergoes numerous rounds of error prone production within an infected host. The resulting quasispecies are heterogeneous and in the absence of archaeological records of past infection, the evolution of HBV can only be inferred indirectly from its epidemiology and by genetic analysis. This review gathered the controversies about the HBV origin and factors influencing its quasispecies. Also, it provided some evidence on how HBV genotypes correlated with human history and patterns of migration. It is our belief that this topic deserves further attention and thus it is likely that more critical research work will be performed to elucidate the unknown mechanisms and processes in this area. © 2009 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Sridhar S.,Imperial College London | Begom S.,Imperial College London | Bermingham A.,Public Health England | Hoschler K.,Public Health England | And 4 more authors.
Emerging Infectious Diseases | Year: 2013

We conducted a longitudinal community cohort study of healthy adults in the UK. We found significantly higher incidence of influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 infection in 2010-11 than in 2009-10, a substantial proportion of subclinical infection, and higher risk for infection during 2010-11 among persons with lower preinfection antibody titers.

Sridhar S.,UK National Heart and Lung Institute | Begom S.,UK National Heart and Lung Institute | Hoschler K.,Public Health England | Bermingham A.,Public Health England | And 4 more authors.
American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine | Year: 2015

Rationale: Antibodies to influenza hemagglutinin are the primary correlate of protection against infection. The strength and persistence of this immune response influences viral evolution and consequently the nature of influenza epidemics. However, the durability and immune determinants of induction of humoral immunity after primary influenza infection remain unclear. Objectives: The spread of a novel H1N1 (A[H1N1]pdm09) virus in 2009 through an unexposed population offered a natural experiment to assess the nature and longevity of humoral immunity after a single primary influenza infection. Methods: We followed A(H1N1)pdm09-seronegative adults through two influenza seasons (2009-2011) as they developed A(H1N1)pdm09 influenza infection or were vaccinated. Antibodies to A(H1N1)pdm09 virus were measured by hemagglutinationinhibition assay in individuals with paired serum samples collected preinfection and postinfection or vaccination to assess durability of humoral immunity. Preexisting A(H1N1)pdm09-specific multicytokine-secreting CD4 and CD8 T cells were quantified by multiparameter flow cytometry to test the hypothesis that higher frequencies of CD4+ T-cell responses predict stronger antibody induction after infection or vaccination. Measurements and Main Results: Antibodies induced by natural infection persisted at constant high titer for a minimum of approximately 15 months. Contrary to our initial hypothesis, the fold increase in A(H1N1)pdm09-specific antibody titer after infection was inversely correlated to the frequency of preexisting circulating A(H1N1)pdm09-specific CD4+IL-2+IFN-γ-TNF-α- T cells (r = 20.4122; P = 0.03). Conclusions: The longevity of protective humoral immunity after influenza infection has important implications for influenza transmission dynamics and vaccination policy, and identification of its predictive cellular immune correlate could guide vaccine development and evaluation. Copyright © 2015 by the American Thoracic Society.

Shepherd S.J.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | Abdelrahman T.,University of Glasgow | MacLean A.R.,West of Scotland Specialist Virology Center | Thomson E.C.,University of Glasgow | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Virology | Year: 2015

Background: Protease inhibitors (PI) including boceprevir, telaprevir and simeprevir have revolutionised HCV genotype 1 treatment since their introduction. A number of pre-treatment resistance associated amino acid variants (RAVs) and polymorphisms have been associated with reduced response to treatment. Objectives: We measured the prevalence of RAVs/polymorphisms in a PI treatment-naïve HCV genotype 1 Scottish cohort using Sanger sequencing. Study design: Chronically infected, treatment-naïve, HCV genotype 1 patients (. n=. 146) attending NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde clinics were investigated for RAVs/polymorphisms to the PIs boceprevir, telaprevir and simeprevir. The NS3/4A region was amplified by nested polymerase chain reaction. The 1.4. kb amplified product was sequenced using an ABI 3710XL DNA sequencer. Sequence analysis was performed using web-based ReCall (beta 2.10). Amino acid positions 36, 41, 43, 54, 55, 80, 109, 122, 155, 156, 168 and 170 were analysed for RAVs/polymorphisms. Results: Overall, 23.29% (34/146) of patients had an RAV or polymorphism detected. Overall, 13.69% (20/146) of patients had HCV virus that contained the Q8 K polymorphism. Other RAVs detected were: V36 M 0.70% (1/146), V36L 0.70% (1/146), T54S 6.85% (10/146), V55A 3.42% (5/146) and V/I170A 0.68% (1/146). Four patients had dual combinations of mutations (T54S. +. V36L; T54S. +. V55A and 2 patients with T54S. +. Q80K). Conclusions: Q80K was the most prevalent baseline polymorphism detected in the Scottish cohort. Simeprevir treatment is not recommended in patients infected with the Q80K genotype 1a variant. This highlights the need for baseline sequencing prior to administration of this drug in this population. © 2015.

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