Abstract in English:Abstract Background Two-Drug Regimens (2DR) have proven effective in clinical trials but real-world data, especially in resource-limited settings, is limited. Objectives To evaluate viral suppression of lamivudine-based 2DR, with dolutegravir or ritonavir-boosted protease inhibitor (lopinavir/r, atazanavir/r or darunavir/r), among all cases regardless of selection criteria. Patients and methods A retrospective study, conducted in an HIV clinic in the metropolitan area of São Paulo, Brazil. Per-protocol failure was defined as viremia above 200 copies/mL at outcome. Intention-To-Treat-Exposed (ITT-E) failure was considered for those who initiated 2DR but subsequently had either (i) Delay over 30 days in Antiretroviral Treatment (ART) dispensation, (ii) ART changed or (iii) Viremia > 200 copies/mL in the last observation using 2DR. Results Out of 278 patients initiating 2DR, 99.6% had viremia below 200 copies/mL at last observation, 97.8% below 50 copies/mL. Lamivudine resistance, either documented (M184V) or presumed (viremia > 200 copies/mL over a month using 3TC) was present in 11% of cases that showed lower suppression rates (97%), but with no significant hazard ratio to fail per ITT-E (1.24, p= 0.78). Decreased kidney function, present in 18 cases, showed of 4.69 hazard ratio (p= 0.02) per ITT-E for failure (3/18). As per protocol analysis, three failures occurred, none with renal dysfunction. Conclusions The 2DR is feasible, with robust suppression rates, even when 3TC resistance or renal dysfunction is present, and close monitoring of these cases may guarantee long-term suppression.
Abstract in English:Abstract Introduction The incidence of antimicrobial resistance is increasing in many parts of the world. The focus of this report is to examine changes in antimicrobial resistance epidemiology among clinical isolates of Enterobacterales and Pseudomonas aeruginosa collected in six Latin American countries as part of the Antimicrobial Testing Leadership and Surveillance (ATLAS) program from 2015 to 2020, with a focus on the in vitro activity of ceftazidime-avibactam against Multidrug-Resistant (MDR) isolates. Methods Non-duplicate, clinical isolates of Enterobacterales (n= 15,215) and P. aeruginosa (n= 4,614) collected by 40 laboratories in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Venezuela, from 2015 to 2020, underwent centralized Clinical Lab Standards Institute (CLSI) broth microdilution susceptibility testing. Minimum Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) values were interpreted using 2022 CLSI breakpoints. An MDR phenotype was defined by resistance to ≥ 3 of seven sentinel agents. Results In total, 23.3% of Enterobacterales and 25.1% of P. aeruginosa isolates were MDR. Annual percent MDR values for Enterobacterales were stable from 2015 to 2018 (21.3% to 23.7% year) but markedly increased in 2019 (31.5%) and 2020 (32.4%). Annual percent MDR values for P. aeruginosa were stable from 2015 to 2020 (23.0% to 27.6% year). Isolates were divided into two 3-year time-periods, 2015‒2017 and 2018‒2020, for additional analyses. For Enterobacterales, 99.3% of all isolates and 97.1% of MDR isolates from 2015‒2017 were ceftazidime-avibactam-susceptible compared to 97.2% and 89.3% of isolates, respectively, from 2018‒2020. For P. aeruginosa, 86.6% of all isolates and 53.9% of MDR isolates from 2015‒2017 were ceftazidime-avibactam-susceptible compared to 85.3% and 45.3% of isolates, respectively, from 2018‒2020. Among individual countries, Enterobacterales and P. aeruginosa collected in Venezuela showed the greatest reductions in ceftazidime-avibactam susceptibility over time. Conclusion MDR Enterobacterales increased in Latin America from 22% in 2015 to 32% in 2020 while MDR P. aeruginosa remained constant at 25%. Ceftazidime-avibactam remains highly active against all clinical isolates of both Enterobacterales (97.2% susceptible, 2018‒2020) and P. aeruginosa (85.3%), and inhibited more MDR isolates (Enterobacterales, 89.3% susceptible, 2018‒2020; P. aeruginosa, 45.3%) than carbapenems, fluoroquinolones, and aminoglycosides.
Abstract in English:Abstract Background The factors associated with bacterial vaginosis in women with homosexual, bisexual and heterosexual practices are still poorly explored. Thus, the aim of this study was to analyze the factors associated with bacterial vaginosis in women with different sexual practices. Methods Cross-sectional study that included 453 women, 149 Women with Homosexual practice (WSW); 80 bisexual Women (WSWM) and 224 Women with heterosexual practice (WSM). The diagnosis of bacterial vaginosis was performed by microscopic examination of the vaginal smears stained by Gram method and classified according to the Nugent et al. (1991) score. Data analysis was performed by Cox multiple regression. Results Bacterial vaginosis was associated to years of education among WSW (0.91 [95% CI 0.82‒0.99]; p= 0.048) and non-white skin color (2.34 [95% CI 1.05‒5.19]; p= 0.037) between WSWM. Changing partners in the last 3-months (2.09 [95% CI 1.14‒3.82]; p= 0.017), inconsistent use of condoms (2.61 [95% CI 1.10‒6.20]; p= 0.030) and positive diagnosis of Chlamydia trachomatis (2.40 [95% CI 1.01‒5.73]; p= 0.048) were associated with bacterial vaginoses only in WSH. Conclusions The factors associated to bacterial vaginosis differ between different sexual practices, suggesting that the type of sexual partner may influence the risk of developing this classic dysbiosis.
Abstract in English:Abstract Background In the initial phases of the COVID-19 pandemic, strategies adopted to reduce the dissemination of SARS-CoV-2 relied on non-pharmacological interventions, including physical distancing. Mobility restrictions affected the availability and quality of care for many health conditions, including sexually transmitted infections. Objective To investigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic mobility restriction on syphilis and HIV testing in outpatient settings. Methods In this study, we collected the weekly number of syphilis and HIV tests performed in a referent laboratory in São Paulo, Brazil, as well as the percentage of positive tests between January 2019 and December 2021. We also retrieved data on retail and recreation mobility in São Paulo city using Google COVID-19 Community Mobility Reports. We explored the association between populational mobility and the number of weekly tests and the association between the number of weekly tests and the percentage of positive results during the pandemic period. The analyses were conducted separately for syphilis and HIV tests. Results We found that mobility restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic have been associated with a significant decrease in both syphilis and HIV tests performed in outpatient settings. We also observed that the number of tests performed was inversely associated with the percentage of positive results for syphilis; this association was also apparent for HIV tests in the first wave of the pandemic in the graphic analysis. Conclusion Taken together, our findings suggest an indirect impact of COVID-19 pandemic-related mobility restrictions on the uptake of diagnostic tests for HIV and syphilis and the potential adoption of targeted-testing strategies. Understanding the extent and complexity of COVID-19 aftermaths on specific conditions and communities is essential to build strategies to mitigate the long-term consequences of COVID-19.
Abstract in English:Abstract Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacterales and Pseudomonas aeruginosa are being isolated from patient specimens with increasing frequency in Latin America and worldwide. The current study provides an initial description of the in vitro activity of imipenem/relebactam (IMR) against non-Morganellaceae Enterobacterales (NME) and P. aeruginosa infecting hospitalized patients in Latin America. From 2018 to 2020, 37 clinical laboratories in nine Latin American countries participated in the SMART global surveillance program and contributed 15,466 NME and 3408 P aeruginosa isolates. MICs for IMR and seven comparators were determined using CLSI broth microdilution and interpreted by CLSI M100 (2022) breakpoints. β-lactamase genes were identified in selected isolate subsets. IMR (96.9% susceptible), amikacin (95.9%), meropenem (90.7%), and imipenem (88.7%) were the most active agents against NME. Among piperacillin/tazobactam-nonsusceptible NME (n= 4124), 90.4% of isolates were IMR-susceptible (range by country, 97.2 [Chile] to 67.0% [Guatemala]) and among meropenem-nonsusceptible NME isolates (n= 1433), 74.0% were IMR-susceptible (94.1% [Puerto Rico] to 5.1% [Guatemala]). Overall, 6.3% of all collected NME isolates carried a KPC (metallo-β-lactamase [MBL]-negative), 1.8% an MBL, 0.4% an OXA-48-like carbapenemase (MBL-negative), and 0.1% a GES carbapenemase (MBL-negative). Amikacin (85.2% susceptible) and IMR (80.1%) were the most active agents against P. aeruginosa; only 56.5% of isolates were imipenem-susceptible. Relebactam increased susceptibility to imipenem by 22.0% (from 23.9% to 45.9%) in piperacillin/tazobactam-nonsusceptible isolates (n= 1031) and by 35.5% (from 5.5% to 41.0%) in meropenem-nonsusceptible isolates (n= 1128). Overall, 7.6% of all collected P. aeruginosa isolates were MBL-positive and 0.7% carried a GES carbapenemase. In conclusion, in 2018‒2020, almost all NME (97%) and most P. aeruginosa(80%) isolates from Latin America were IMR-susceptible. Continued surveillance of the in vitro activities of IMR and comparator agents against Gram-negative pathogens, and monitoring for β-lactamase changes (in particular for increases in MBLs), is warranted.
Abstract in English:Abstract Cryptosporidiosis is a waterborne protozoal infection that may cause life-threatening diarrhea in undernourished children living in unsanitary environments. The aim of this study is to identify new biomarkers that may be related to gut-brain axis dysfunction in children suffering from the malnutrition/infection vicious cycle is necessary for better intervention strategies. Myeloperoxidase (MPO) is a well-known neutrophil-related tissue factor released during enteropathy that could drive gut-derived brain inflammation. We utilized a model of environmental enteropathy in C57BL/6 weanling mice challenged by Cryptosporidium and undernutrition. Mice were fed a 2%-Protein Diet (dPD) for eight days and orally infected with 107-C. parvum oocysts. C. parvum oocyst shedding was assessed from fecal and ileal-extracted genomic DNA by qRT-PCR. Ileal histopathology scores were assessed for intestinal inflammation. Prefrontal cortex samples were snap-frozen for MPO ELISA assay and NF-kb immunostaining. Blood samples were drawn by cardiac puncture after anesthesia and sera were obtained for serum amyloid A (SAA) and MPO analysis. Brain samples were also obtained for Iba-1 prefrontal cortex immunostaining. C. parvum-infected mice showed sustained stool oocyst shedding for six days post-infection and increased fecal MPO and inflammation scores. dPD and cryptosporidiosis led to impaired growth and weight gain. C. parvum-infected dPD mice showed increased serum MPO and serum amyloid A (SAA) levels, markers of systemic inflammation. dPD-infected mice showed greater MPO, NF-kB expression, and Iba-1 immunolabeling in the prefrontal cortex, an important brain region involved in executive function. Our findings suggest MPO as a potential biomarker for intestinal-brain axis dysfunction due to environmental enteropathy.
Abstract in English:Abstract Despite the success of Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) in preventing HIV-1-associated clinical progression to AIDS, it is unable to eliminate the viral reservoirs and eradicate the HIV-1 infection. Therapeutic vaccination is an alternative approach to alter the HIV-1 infection course. It can induce effective HIV-1-specific immunity to control viremia and eliminate the need for lifelong ART. Immunological data from spontaneous HIV-1 controllers have shown that cross-reactive T-cell responses are the key immune mechanism in HIV-1 control. Directing these responses toward preferred HIV-1 epitopes is a promising strategy in therapeutic vaccine settings. Designing novel immunogens based on the HIV-1 conserved regions containing a wide range of critical T- and B-cell epitopes of the main viral antigens (conserved multiepitope approaches) supplies broad coverage of global diversity in HIV-1 strains and Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) alleles. It can also prevent immune induction to undesirable decoy epitopes theoretically. The efficacy of different novel HIV-1 immunogens based on the conserved and/or functional protective site of HIV-1 proteome has been evaluated in multiple clinical trials. Most of these immunogens were generally safe and able to induce potent HIV-1-specific immunity. However, despite these findings, several candidates have demonstrated limited efficacy in viral replication control. In this study, we used the PubMed and ClinicalTrial.gov databases to review the rationale of designing curative HIV-1 vaccine immunogens based on the conserved favorable site of the virus. Most of these studies evaluate the efficacy of vaccine candidates in combination with other therapeutics and/or with new formulations and immunization protocols. This review briefly describes the design of conserved multiepitope constructs and outlines the results of these vaccine candidates in the recent clinical pipeline.