Abstract in English:Abstract Invasive aspergillosis is a common fungal infection in immunocompromised individuals. Some studies have shown that toll-like receptor and dectin-1 genetic polymorphisms may alter signaling pathways, thus increasing an individual’s susceptibility to invasive aspergillosis. We investigated the pertinent literature to determine whether polymorphisms in the genes encoding toll-like receptors and dectin-1 increase the susceptibility to invasive aspergillosis. This study systematically reviewed the literature using the databases PubMed/PMC, Scopus, and Web of Science using the keywords invasive aspergillosis, polymorphism, Toll-like, and Dectin-1. From the initial search, 415 studies were found and according to our inclusion and exclusion criteria, eight studies were selected. Several studies described single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that are associated with a greater susceptibility to invasive aspergillosis. These SNPs were found in the genes that encode toll-like receptors 1, 3, 4, and 5 and the gene that encodes dectin-1; upon activation, both cellular receptors initiate a signaling cascade that can result in the production of cytokines and chemokines. Thus, our literature review uncovered a significant association between polymorphisms in the genes that encode toll-like receptors and dectin-1 and invasive aspergillosis. More studies should be performed to better understand the relationship between toll-like receptor and dectin-1 genetic polymorphisms and invasive aspergillosis susceptibility.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Chronic hepatitis C is a leading cause of liver disease. Infection triggers an immediate immune response in the host that is mediated by humoral/cellular mechanisms. T cells respond to infection via secretion of cytokines, which inhibit or stimulate one another, leading to cytokine imbalance and ultimately affecting treatment. Studies using interferon (IFN) and ribavirin (RBV) showed that TCD8+ cells and cytokine levels are associated with sustainable virological response (SVR). However, studies that investigated the effects of triple therapy (TT) are limited. METHODS: The study included hepatitis C virus (HCV)+ RNA, naives, genotype 1, ≥18 years, and advanced fibrosis (F≥3) patients. Samples were collected at baseline and after 12 weeks (W12) of TT. Six cytokines were analyzed by flow cytometry. RESULTS: Of 31 patients, four were excluded (two deaths, one interrupted TT, and one F2 patient). Of the 27 remaining patients, 21 (78%) were cirrhotic. SVR was achieved in 63% of the patients. The patients had a mean age of 55.11 ± 10.03 years. Analyses at baseline showed that the chemokine CCL5/Regulated on Activation, Normal T Cell Expressed and Secreted (RANTES) (p=0.04) and interleukin (IL)-6 (p=0.02), which was associated with SVR. RANTES (p=0.04) and IL-8 (p=0.01) levels were associated with SVR at W12. CONCLUSIONS Similar to patterns observed during double therapy, IL-6, IL-8, and RANTES levels were associated with SVR in TT, indicating the potential role of interferon in immune response to hepatitis C virus.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) have identical transmission routes, explaining the high prevalence of coinfections. The main aim of this study was to detect fluctuations in serological HCV levels in HIV patients. METHODS: We analyzed samples of 147 patients who attended an outpatient service that supports HIV/AIDS patients in São Paulo city. We also recruited 22 HCV-monoinfected patients who attended the Instituto Adolfo Lutz Laboratory in São Paulo city, to compare the test results. Serological testing of the blood samples was performed for the detection of HCV antibodies. The samples were then analyzed using real-time PCR for RNA viral quantification and sequencing. RESULTS We found that 13.6% of the study population was coinfected with HIV and HCV. In 20% of coinfected patients, fluctuations in serology results were detected in samples collected during the follow-up. No changes in anti-HCV serological markers were observed in HCV-monoinfected patients. An HCV viral load was detected in 9,5% of the samples collected from HIV patients. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings provide important clinical data to public health professionals and highlight the importance of periodic monitoring of HCV/HIV coinfected patients.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Quality of life (QoL) is important for people living with HIV/AIDS, particularly as the disease progresses. This study evaluated the QoL of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA), as well as its predictors, in one of the most impoverished regions of Brazil. METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted with patients older than 18 years with HIV/AIDS from two specialized HIV/AIDS care centers in the city of Montes Claros between 2013 and 2014. Sample size was calculated considering the estimates of mean scores for various dimensions of the European Portuguese version of the World Health’s Organization Quality of Life Instrument in HIV Infection (WHOQOL-HIV Bref). The following parameters were adopted: CI of 95%, estimated mean scores for QoL equal to 15, estimated variance for QoL scores equal to 16, and 5% relative margin of error. An increase of 20% was established to compensate for possible non-responses or losses, and correcting any design effect, adopting a deff equal to 2.0. Calculations revealed the need to interview at least 221 patients. Therefore, 226 patients living with HIV/AIDS were randomly selected. RESULTS: A total of 226 patients with mean age 43.7 years were evaluated: 51.8% men, 51.8% unemployed, 51.8% with low schooling level, 89.8% used antiretrovirals, and 43.3% experienced depression. Despite this, data indicated that 65% self-assessed their QoL as good and very good. Low QoL was associated with sociodemographic variables and some clinical variables. CONCLUSIONS: Depression was the main predictor of low QoL in all domains evaluated.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Dengue is one of the most important mosquito-borne infections. Severe cases are more frequently observed in adults. However, in 2008, the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, experienced a severe dengue epidemic that primarily affected children and caused many cases of dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) and death. METHODS: A cross-sectional analytical study was conducted to examine laboratory diagnosis and clinical epidemiologic factors for confirmed dengue cases in patients aged less than 16 years, from January to June 2008, at a municipal hospital in the City of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Variables associated with severe outcomes and P values less than .05 were evaluated by means of a logistic regression model. RESULTS: Of the 419 dengue cases studied, 296 were classified as DHF and 123 as classical dengue. Six patients who had DHF died. In multivariate analysis, some laboratory and clinical variables were independently associated with DHF: age 5 years or older (odds ratio [OR], 4.94; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.30-18.71), abdominal pain (OR, 8.59; 95% CI, 3.17-23.27), hepatomegaly (OR, 15.87; 95% CI, 5.38-46.85), and positive tourniquet test (OR, 10.84; 95% CI, 3.96-29.71). Hypoalbuminemia occurred more frequently than hemoconcentration in DHF cases, and high aminotransferase levels were associated with severity. CONCLUSIONS: Age greater than 5 years, abdominal pain, painful hepatomegaly, and positive tourniquet test were predictors of DHF. The high frequency of hepatic impairment suggests that acetaminophen should be avoided in severe cases of dengue.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS) are a frequent cause of bacteremia, especially in neonates. The major virulence determinant in CoNS is the ability to produce biofilms, which is conferred by the icaADBC genes. This study aimed to assess different methods for the detection of biofilm formation in 176 CoNS isolates from blood cultures of newborns. METHODS: The presence of the icaACD genes was assessed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and biofilm formation was assessed on congo red agar (CRA), by the tube method (TM), and on tissue culture plates (TCP). RESULTS: Of the 176 CoNS isolates, 30.1% expressed icaACD and 11.4% expressed icaAD. The CRA assay and TM showed that 42% and 38.6% of the isolates were biofilm producing, respectively. On TCP, 40.9% of the isolates produced biofilms; 21% were weakly adherent and 19.9% were strongly adherent. When compared to the gold standard technique (PCR), the CRAassay showed 79% sensitivity and 84% specificity (kappa = 0.64), TM showed 78% sensitivity and 89% specificity (kappa = 0.68), and TCP showed 99% sensitivity and 100% specificity (kappa = 0.99). CONCLUSIONS: In this study, ~42% of CoNS isolates produced biofilms, and the presence of icaACD was associated with a greater capacity to form biofilms. Compared to the other phenotypic methodologies, TCP is an ideal procedure for routine laboratory use.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Favorable responses in American tegumentary leishmaniasis (ATL) patients to treatment with 5 mg Sbv/kg/day meglumine antimoniate (MA) has been reported in Rio de Janeiro, but little is known regarding the therapeutic response to low doses in patients from other locations. METHODS: A retrospective review of medical records was conducted to compare the therapeutic response to 5 mg Sbv/kg/day MA treatment among 36 patients who acquired ATL in Brazilian states other than Rio de Janeiro (OS group) and 72 patients from Rio de Janeiro (RJ group). RESULTS: One course of 5 mg Sbv/kg/day MA cured 72.8% of 81 cutaneous (CL) and 66.6% of 27 mucosal (ML) leishmaniasis-infected patients: 70% in the CL/RJ group, 81% in the CL/OS group, 50% in the ML/RJ group, and 80% in the ML/OS group. After up to two additional treatment courses at the same dose, 88.9% and 85.2% of the CL and ML patients were cured, respectively. Adverse events were observed in 40% of patients in the CL/RJ group, 57% of the CL/OS group, 58% of the ML/RJ group, and 80% of the ML/OS group. No significant differences were observed in the cure rates or adverse effects between the RJ and OS groups. No patients required permanent discontinuation of treatment due to adverse events. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with ATL acquired in both RJ and OS may respond to low-dose MA. While high-dose MA should remain the standard treatment for ATL, low-dose MA might be preferred when toxicity is a primary concern.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: The prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection varies markedly among different populations, especially depending on factors related to socioeconomic development and eating habits. Cássia dos Coqueiros is a small city in Brazil with rural characteristics and increased risk factors traditionally associated with T. gondii infection. METHODS: We carried out a cross-sectional study involving 970 inhabitants aged 18 years or more, selected from patients of the local health unit and home visits in urban and rural areas. Each participant completed a survey with questions regarding demographic, socioeconomic, and risk factors for toxoplasmosis. Blood samples from participants were tested for presence of IgG and IgM antibodies against T. gondii using a chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. RESULTS: The prevalence of IgG and IgM antibodies was 62.3% and 2.5%, respectively. Variables that proved to be independent predictors of infection were age, low levels of education, and previous diagnosis of toxoplasmosis. CONCLUSIONS: The high prevalence of toxoplasmosis serological markers in this adult population highlights the need to promote preventive practices, especially those directed toward women of childbearing age, in this part of Brazil.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: The Integrated Program of Leprosy Control was initiated in the municipality of Buriticupu, Maranhão, Brazil, an area considered hyperendemic for leprosy in 2003. It aims at assessing the clinical and epidemiological characteristics of the disease to reduce the detection rate of new cases until 2015. Here, we present the evolution of the indicators of leprosy within the period from 2003 to 2015. METHODS: We conducted a descriptive analytical study based on the active search for and voluntary referral of cases of leprosy. The detection rate of new cases was analyzed over time. We included individuals diagnosed with leprosy between January 2003 and December 2015. The association between categorical variables was assessed using the chi-square test of independence, considering a level of significance of 5%. When the association was significant, the detection rate (with a confidence interval of 95%) was calculated. RESULTS: Overall, 879 new leprosy cases were detected; the majority of the affected individuals were men (65.9%). Multibacillary leprosy was the most common type of the disease, according to the operational classification (55.5%); it showed the strongest association with an age ≥60 years. We also detected an association between the male sex and both, lepromatous and multibacillary leprosy. The detection rate reduced from 211.09/100,000 population in 2003 to 50.26/100,000 population in 2015. CONCLUSIONS: We found an improvement in leprosy control, with a reduction in the detection rate and the absolute number of cases. Strengthening of disease control measures should be prioritized to eliminate leprosy as a public health concern in this municipality.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION Portal hypertension and periportal fibrosis commonly occur in severe Schistosoma mansoni infection. Changes in lipid profile and elevated levels of circulating liver enzymes have also been described in infected individuals. The present study sought to assess the alterations in laboratory parameters associated with liver disorder in individuals infected by S. mansoni who visited a private routine laboratory service. Levels of circulating liver enzymes (gamma-glutamyl transferase [γ-GT], aspartate transaminase [AST], alanine transaminase [ALT], and alkaline phosphatase [ALP]) and a lipid panel (total cholesterol [COL], high-density lipoprotein [HDL], low-density lipoprotein [LDL], very low-density lipoprotein [VLDL], and triglycerides [TRI]) were evaluated in both infected and non-infected individuals and relative risk was used to measure associations. METHODS Data were collected for analysis from a total of 1,078 cases identified in 379,600 individuals who submitted samples to the Datalab Laboratory (Salvador, Bahia) between 2004 and 2008. RESULTS S. mansoni infection led to increased circulating levels of γ-GT in both women and men, AST (women), and ALP (men). S. mansoni infection was a protective factor against increased levels of TRI, CHO, and VLDL for individuals aged 19 years or older. The results of our analysis indicate that alterations in lipid metabolism and circulating liver enzymes in asymptomatic S. mansoni-infected individuals might be attributed to eggs lodged in the hepatic sinusoids. CONCLUSIONS Parasitological testing for S. mansoni should be indicated in endemic areas when this pattern of alterations is detected.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION The prevalence, public health impact, and epidemiological characteristics of hepatitis E virus (HEV) are poorly understood in Brazil. METHODS Serum samples from 535 individuals from three rural Afro-descendant communities located in eastern Brazilian Amazon were collected in October 2015 and tested for presence of anti-HEV IgM and IgG antibodies. Serologically positive samples were also tested for HEV-RNA. RESULTS Two cases were confirmed for anti-HEV IgM (0.3 %) and two cases for anti-HEV IgG (0.3 %). No sample was positive for HEV-RNA. CONCLUSIONS Results indicated low prevalence of HEV infection in Afro-descendant rural communities from the eastern Brazilian Amazon.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION The influence of cytomegalovirus (CMV) on the progression of chronic periodontitis in HIV patients is poorly investigated. METHODS ELISA was used for anti-CMV antibody IgG titer measurements and real-time polymerase chain reaction for qualitative and quantitative CMV detection. Data on the CD4 + T lymphocyte count and plasma HIV viral load were obtained from patient records. RESULTS CMV DNA was detected in samples of subgingival biofilm in only three individuals, two of them with chronic periodontitis (4%) and one with gingivitis (3.3%). CONCLUSIONS The prevalence of CMV is very low both in HIV-1 patients with gingivitis and chronic periodontitis.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION The incidence of syphilis has increased since the 1970s. METHODS This was a descriptive and analytical cross-sectional study with a non-probabilistic sample. RESULTS: Of 973 patients with human immunodeficiency virus, 179 (18.4%) tested positive for both human immunodeficiency virus and syphilis, 84.8% were men, 50.9% were aged between 36 and 50 years, 47.8% with syphilis were diagnosed with human immunodeficiency virus for 10-20 years, and 40.3% received antiretroviral therapy for 10-20 years. CONCLUSIONS The prevalence of syphilis in patients with human immunodeficiency virus is higher than expected, making it urgent to adopt efficient public health measures.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: This study describes cases of syphilis in pregnancy (SiP) and congenital syphilis (CS) and identifies factors associated with mother-to-child transmission in patients in Itapeva from January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2014. METHODS: Using SiP and CS notification forms and medical records, a cross-sectional study involving 149 pregnant women was conducted. RESULTS: Annual SiP detection rates ranged from 16.3-31.4/1000 live births. Most women had prenatal care started at the first trimester of pregnancy with ≥6 visits. Mother-to-child transmission rate was 69.7%. CS incidence rates varied from 9.1-22.3/1000 live births. CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest low quality of prenatal care.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: We investigated the occurrence of coronary sinus abnormalities in the indeterminate form of Chagas disease (CD). METHODS: Differences between the maximum and minimum diameters of the coronary sinus (∆%) on echocardiography were evaluated in individuals with the indeterminate form of CD (n=14) and those without (n=16) CD. The association of the difference with abnormalities detected by echocardiography and myocardial scintigraphy was assessed. RESULTS: The mean Δ% values did not differ significantly between the groups. There was no correlation of the measurements with echocardiographic and myocardial scintigraphy findings. CONCLUSIONS: The coronary sinus evaluation revealed no differences between the groups.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: Chagas disease (CD) prevention and control rely on studies of its distribution, characteristics of individuals affected and mode of transmission. CD data in Brazil are scarce; a retrospective analysis of the clinical characteristics of 80 patients treated at the Clinical Hospital of UNICAMP, Campinas, Brazil, was performed. METHODS: Patient data records were analyzed. RESULTS: Thirty percent of the patients probably got infected through vector-borne transmission, 65% came from endemic areas, a predominance of cardiac and cardiodigestive forms was found among males, and the cardiac form prevailed (51%). CONCLUSIONS: The results update the view on the epidemiology of CD in Campinas, Brazil.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION This study characterized the clinico-epidemiological profile of American cutaneous leishmaniasis (ACL) cases in Barbalha, Ceará State, Brazil. METHODS Medical records of 363 patients visiting Federal University of Cariri between 2009 and 2014 were analyzed. RESULTS ACL was more prevalent in men with low education level from rural zones. The main presentation was a single ulcer, mainly in the lower limbs, and 49.8% also presented lymphadenomegaly. The annual incidence ranged from 2.83 to 22.60 per 10,000 inhabitants. CONCLUSIONS: The rates observed in this study indicate the importance of additional research to contribute to the control of this endemic disease.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION Peripheral blood of 400 dogs infected with Leishmania and Ehrlichia were analyzed using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and clinical signs were characterized. METHODS PCR and parasitological tests were conducted. RESULTS PCR was positive for Leishmania in 84.75%, and parasitological tests showed that 63.25% and 31.75% were positive for Leishmania and Ehrlichia, respectively. All animals showed more than three clinical signs. PCR results were negative for Leishmania in 15.25% of the samples. CONCLUSIONS Conventional PCR of peripheral blood can be used for diagnosing canine visceral leishmaniasis in combination with other techniques, especially in uncertain cases that need species identification.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION Leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and malaria cause morbidity globally. The drugs currently used for treatment have limitations. Activity of cinnamic acid analogs against Leishmania spp., Trypanosoma cruzi, and Plasmodium falciparum was evaluated in the interest of identifying new antiprotozoal compounds. METHODS In vitro effects of analogs against L. braziliensis, L. infantum chagasi, T. cruzi, and P. falciparum, and hemolytic and cytotoxic activities on NCTC 929 were determined. RESULTS Three analogs showed leishmanicidal and tripanocidal activity. No antiplasmodial, hemolytic, or cytotoxic activity was observed. CONCLUSIONS Antiprotozoal activity of analogs against L. infantum braziliensis, L. infantum chagasi, and T. cruzi was demonstrated.
Abstract in English:Abstract INTRODUCTION: In most Strongyloides stercoralis infected individuals, nematoidosis occurs asymptomatically, but in immunocompromised patients, it can cause hyperinfection. Serological techniques seem to be a good alternative for detecting this parasite. METHODS The frequency of seropositivity for strongyloidiasis in Alfenas, MG, was estimated using the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay on blood samples, between May and August of 2015. RESULTS: Out of 258 samples tested, 53.9% were positive, and the frequency of seropositive individuals was higher in the peripheral districts of the municipality. CONCLUSIONS: The results indicate high seropositivity rates for strongyloidiasis among the residents of Alfenas city.
Abstract in English:Abstract Cysticercosis is caused by the hematogenous dissemination of the larval form (cysticercus) of Taenia solium. It can affect any organ or tissue in the body but commonly affects the subcutaneous tissue, central nervous system, eyes, and skeletal muscle. Skin lesions can assist as a marker in the diagnosis of asymptomatic neurocysticercosis in endemic areas. A 49-year-old HIV positive man presented with multiple cutaneous nodules confirmed as cysticercomas which led to the diagnosis of asymptomatic neurocysticercosis. He was successfully treated with albendazole and steroids at recommended doses with no adverse effects.
Abstract in English:Abstract The involvement of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in the central nervous system (CNS) is an uncommon and devastating manifestation of tuberculosis. We report a case of disseminated tuberculosis presenting as meningoencephalitis, hypothalamic involvement with extension to the hypophysis, and secondary insipidus diabetes diagnosed at autopsy.
Abstract in English:Abstract Cardiorenal syndrome type 1 (CRS 1) occurs when acute heart failure leads to acute kidney injury. There are several etiologies of CRS 1, including Chagas disease. Here, we present the first case report of CRS 1 in a patient with acute Chagas disease. Electrocardiography, transthoracic echocardiography, and cardiac magnetic resonance imaging showed signs of acute myocarditis. Laboratory examination revealed severe loss of kidney function, with a creatinine clearance of 30 mL/min, which fully normalized after treatment. Due to emergence of Chagas disease in the Brazilian Amazon, it is important to report unique clinical features in order to improve patients’ outcomes.
Abstract in English:Abstract Vancomycin is a first-line drug for treating methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Thrombocytopenia is a rare adverse reaction to vancomycin treatment, and there are no reports of vancomycin-induced thrombocytopenia (VIT) in infants. We describe the case of a 3-month-old girl who was diagnosed with purulent meningitis. After 13 days of treatment with vancomycin, her platelet count reduced to 8 × 109/L. Vancomycin was discontinued, and intravenous methylprednisolone was administered. The platelet count returned to normal after 4 days. Patients, especially young children, receiving vancomycin for a long clinical course should undergo careful monitoring of laboratory indicators and blood tests.