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Acinetobacter baumannii is a Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen and a leading cause of ventilator-associated pneumonia. Murine models of A. baumannii lung infection allow researchers to experimentally assess A. baumannii virulence and host response. Intranasal administration of A. baumannii models acute lung infection. This chapter describes the methods to test A. baumannii virulence in a murine model of lung infection, including assessing the competitive index of a bacterial mutant and the associated inflammatory responses.
AIMS - We conducted a prospective study of emergency department (ED) patients with acute heart failure (AHF) to determine if worsening HF (WHF) could be predicted based on urinary electrolytes during the first 1-2 h of ED care. Loop diuretics are standard therapy for AHF patients. A subset of patients hospitalized for AHF will develop a blunted natriuretic response to loop diuretics, termed diuretic resistance, which often leads to WHF. Early detection of diuretic resistance could facilitate escalation of therapy and prevention of WHF.
METHODS AND RESULTS - Patients were eligible if they had an ED AHF diagnosis, had not yet received intravenous diuretics, had a systolic blood pressure > 90 mmHg, and were not on dialysis. Urine electrolytes and urine output were collected at 1, 2, 4, and 6 h after diuretic administration. Worsening HF was defined as clinically persistent or WHF requiring escalation of diuretics or administration of intravenous vasoactives after the ED stay. Of the 61 patients who qualified in this pilot study, there were 10 (16.3%) patients who fulfilled our definition of WHF. At 1 h after diuretic administration, patients who developed WHF were more likely to have low urinary sodium (9.5 vs. 43.0 mmol; P < 0.001) and decreased urine sodium concentration (48 vs. 80 mmol/L; P = 0.004) than patients without WHF. All patients with WHF had a total urine sodium of <35.4 mmol at 1 h (100% sensitivity and 60% specificity).
CONCLUSIONS - One hour after diuretic administration, a urine sodium excretion of <35.4 mmol was highly suggestive of the development of WHF. These relationships require further testing to determine if early intervention with alternative agents can prevent WHF.
© 2018 The Authors. ESC Heart Failure published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.
PURPOSE - To compare the electrophysiological and morphological responses to acute, moderately elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) in Sprague-Dawley (SD), Long-Evans (LE) and Brown Norway (BN) rat eyes.
METHODS - Eleven-week-old SD (n = 5), LE (n = 5) and BN (n = 5) rats were used. Scotopic threshold responses (STRs), Maxwellian flash electroretinograms (ERGs) or ultrahigh-resolution optical coherence tomography (UHR-OCT) images of the rat retinas were collected from both eyes before, during and after IOP elevation of one eye. IOP was raised to ~35 mmHg for 1 h using a vascular loop, while the other eye served as a control. STRs, ERGs and UHR-OCT images were acquired on 3 days separated by 1 day of no experimental manipulation.
RESULTS - There were no significant differences between species in baseline electroretinography. However, during IOP elevation, peak positive STR amplitudes in LE (mean ± standard deviation 259 ± 124 µV) and BN (228 ± 96 µV) rats were about fourfold higher than those in SD rats (56 ± 46 µV) rats (p = 0.0002 for both). Similarly, during elevated IOP, ERG b-wave amplitudes were twofold higher in LE and BN rats compared to those of SD rats (947 ± 129 µV and 892 ± 184 µV, vs 427 ± 138 µV; p = 0.0002 for both). UHR-OCT images showed backward bowing in all groups during IOP elevation, with a return to typical form about 30 min after IOP elevation.
CONCLUSION - Differences in the loop-induced responses between the strains are likely due to different inherent retinal morphology and physiology.
Predicting negative outcomes, such as readmission or death, and detecting high-risk patients are important yet challenging problems in medical informatics. Various models have been proposed to detect high-risk patients; however, the state of the art relies on patient information collected before or at the time of discharge to predict future outcomes. In this paper, we investigate the effect of including data generated post discharge to predict negative outcomes. Specifically, we focus on two types of patients admitted to the Vanderbilt University Medical Center between 2010-2013: i) those with an acute event - 704 hip fractures and ii) those with chronic problems - 5250 congestive heart failure (CHF) patients. We show that the post-discharge model improved the AUC of the LACE index, a standard readmission scoring function, by 20 - 30%. Moreover, the new model resulted in higher AUCs by 15 - 27% for hip fracture and 10 - 12% for CHF compared to standard models.
We examined nasopharyngeal pneumococcal colonization density patterns surrounding acute respiratory illnesses (ARI) in young children in Peru. Pneumococcal densities were dynamic, gradually increasing leading up to an ARI, peaking during the ARI, and decreasing after the ARI. Rhinovirus co-infection was associated with higher pneumococcal densities.
BACKGROUND - Few studies have described patterns of transmission of viral acute respiratory infections (ARI) in children in developing countries. We examined the spatial and temporal spread of viral ARI among young children in rural Peruvian highland communities. Previous studies have described intense social interactions in those communities, which could influence the transmission of viral infections.
METHODS - We enrolled and followed children <3 years of age for detection of ARI during the 2009 to 2011 respiratory seasons in a rural setting with relatively wide geographic dispersion of households and communities. Viruses detected included influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), human metapneumovirus and parainfluenza 2 and 3 viruses (PIV2, PIV3). We used geospatial analyses to identify specific viral infection hot spots with high ARI incidence. We also explored the local spread of ARI from index cases using standard deviational ellipses.
RESULTS - Geospatial analyses revealed hot spots of high ARI incidence around the index cases of influenza outbreaks and RSV outbreak in 2010. Although PIV3 in 2009 and PIV2 in 2010 showed distinct spatial hot spots, clustering was not in proximity to their respective index cases. No significant aggregation around index cases was noted for other viruses. Standard deviational ellipse analyses suggested that influenza B and RSV in 2010, and human metapneumovirus in 2011 spread temporally in alignment with the major road network.
CONCLUSIONS - Despite the geographic dispersion of communities in this rural setting, we observed a rapid spread of viral ARI among young children. Influenza strains and RSV in 2010 had distinctive outbreaks arising from their index cases.
With advances in brain imaging and completion of randomized clinical trials (RCTs) for primary and secondary stroke prevention, the natural history of central nervous system (CNS) complications in sickle cell disease (SCD) is evolving. In order of current prevalence, the primary CNS complications include silent cerebral infarcts (39% by 18 years), headache (both acute and chronic: 36% in children with sickle cell anemia [SCA]), ischemic stroke (as low as 1% in children with SCA with effective screening and prophylaxis, but ∼11% in children with SCA without screening), and hemorrhagic stroke in children and adults with SCA (3% and 10%, respectively). In high-income countries, RCTs (Stroke Prevention in Sickle Cell Anemia [STOP], STOP II) have demonstrated that regular blood transfusion therapy (typically monthly) achieves primary stroke prevention in children with SCA and high transcranial Doppler (TCD) velocities; after at least a year, hydroxycarbamide may be substituted (TCD With Transfusions Changing to Hydroxyurea [TWiTCH]). Also in high-income countries, RCTs have demonstrated that regular blood transfusion is the optimal current therapy for secondary prevention of infarcts for children with SCA and strokes (Stroke With Transfusions Changing to Hydroxyurea [SWiTCH]) or silent cerebral infarcts (Silent Infarct Transfusion [SIT] Trial). For adults with SCD, CNS complications continue to be a major cause of morbidity and mortality, with no evidence-based strategy for prevention.
© 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.
Acute viral infections typically generate functional effector CD8(+) T cells (TCD8) that aid in pathogen clearance. However, during acute viral lower respiratory infection, lung TCD8 are functionally impaired and do not optimally control viral replication. T cells also become unresponsive to Ag during chronic infections and cancer via signaling by inhibitory receptors such as programmed cell death-1 (PD-1). PD-1 also contributes to TCD8 impairment during viral lower respiratory infection, but how it regulates TCD8 impairment and the connection between this state and T cell exhaustion during chronic infections are unknown. In this study, we show that PD-1 operates in a cell-intrinsic manner to impair lung TCD8. In light of this, we compared global gene expression profiles of impaired epitope-specific lung TCD8 to functional spleen TCD8 in the same human metapneumovirus-infected mice. These two populations differentially regulate hundreds of genes, including the upregulation of numerous inhibitory receptors by lung TCD8. We then compared the gene expression of TCD8 during human metapneumovirus infection to those in acute or chronic lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus infection. We find that the immunophenotype of lung TCD8 more closely resembles T cell exhaustion late into chronic infection than do functional effector T cells arising early in acute infection. Finally, we demonstrate that trafficking to the infected lung alone is insufficient for TCD8 impairment or inhibitory receptor upregulation, but that viral Ag-induced TCR signaling is also required. Our results indicate that viral Ag in infected lungs rapidly induces an exhaustion-like state in lung TCD8 characterized by progressive functional impairment and upregulation of numerous inhibitory receptors.
Copyright © 2015 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.
Diagnosis and management of peripheral nerve injury is complicated by the inability to assess microstructural features of injured nerve fibers via clinical examination and electrophysiology. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) has been shown to accurately detect nerve injury and regeneration in crush models of peripheral nerve injury, but no prior studies have been conducted on nerve transection, a surgical emergency that can lead to permanent weakness or paralysis. Acute sciatic nerve injuries were performed microsurgically to produce multiple grades of nerve transection in rats that were harvested 1 hour after surgery. High-resolution diffusion tensor images from ex vivo sciatic nerves were obtained using diffusion-weighted spin-echo acquisitions at 4.7 T. Fractional anisotropy was significantly reduced at the injury sites of transected rats compared with sham rats. Additionally, minor eigenvalues and radial diffusivity were profoundly elevated at all injury sites and were negatively correlated to the degree of injury. Diffusion tensor tractography showed discontinuities at all injury sites and significantly reduced continuous tract counts. These findings demonstrate that high-resolution DTI is a promising tool for acute diagnosis and grading of traumatic peripheral nerve injuries.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most common bacterial infections, causing considerable morbidity in females. Infection is highly recurrent despite appropriate antibiotic treatment. Uropathogenic Escherichia coli (UPEC), the most common causative agent of UTIs, invades bladder epithelial cells (BECs) and develops into clonal intracellular bacterial communities (IBCs). Upon maturation, IBCs disperse, with bacteria spreading to neighboring BECs to repeat this cycle. This process allows UPEC to gain a foothold in the face of innate defense mechanisms, including micturition, epithelial exfoliation, and the influx of polymorphonuclear leukocytes. Here, we investigated the mechanism and dynamics of urothelial exfoliation in the early acute stages of infection. We show that UPEC α-hemolysin (HlyA) induces Caspase-1/Caspase-4-dependent inflammatory cell death in human urothelial cells, and we demonstrate that the response regulator (CpxR)-sensor kinase (CpxA) two-component system (CpxRA), which regulates virulence gene expression in response to environmental signals, is critical for fine-tuning HlyA cytotoxicity. Deletion of the cpxR transcriptional response regulator derepresses hlyA expression, leading to enhanced Caspase-1/Caspase-4- and NOD-like receptor family, pyrin domain containing 3-dependent inflammatory cell death in human urothelial cells. In vivo, overexpression of HlyA during acute bladder infection induces more rapid and extensive exfoliation and reduced bladder bacterial burdens. Bladder fitness is restored fully by inhibition of Caspase-1 and Caspase-11, the murine homolog of Caspase-4. Thus, we have discovered that fine-tuning of HlyA expression by the CpxRA system is critical for enhancing UPEC fitness in the urinary bladder. These results have significant implications for our understanding of how UPEC establishes persistent colonization.