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Pathogens, Volume 10, Issue 11 (November 2021) – 178 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Parasitic helminths are master manipulators of host immunity. Their strategy is complex and involves the release of excreted/secreted products, including extracellular vesicles. Despite reports suggesting the importance of EV surface glycans in the interaction with target cells and thus subsequent effector functions, little is known about parasite EV glycomics. Interestingly, we found evidence of sialylation in Schistosoma mansoni EVs. This finding potentially highlights new means of immune evasion, as sialic acids play important roles in the context of infection but are not thought to be synthesized by helminths. Our results suggest the involvement of the tegument and the digestive and excretory systems in the release of EVs, supporting previous reports of EV diversity in trematodes. View this paper.
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Review
Vaccination as a Strategy to Prevent Bluetongue Virus Vertical Transmission
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1528; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111528 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 583
Abstract
Bluetongue virus (BTV) produces an economically important disease in ruminants of compulsory notification to the OIE. BTV is typically transmitted by the bite of Culicoides spp., however, some BTV strains can be transmitted vertically, and this is associated with fetus malformations and abortions. [...] Read more.
Bluetongue virus (BTV) produces an economically important disease in ruminants of compulsory notification to the OIE. BTV is typically transmitted by the bite of Culicoides spp., however, some BTV strains can be transmitted vertically, and this is associated with fetus malformations and abortions. The viral factors associated with the virus potency to cross the placental barrier are not well defined. The potency of vertical transmission is retained and sometimes even increased in live attenuated BTV vaccine strains. Because BTV possesses a segmented genome, the possibility of reassortment of vaccination strains with wild-type virus could even favor the transmission of this phenotype. In the present review, we will describe the non-vector-based BTV infection routes and discuss the experimental vaccination strategies that offer advantages over this drawback of some live attenuated BTV vaccines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Transmissible Diseases Affecting Reproduction in Small Ruminants)
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Article
Improving Current Knowledge on Seroprevalence and Genetic Characterization of Swine Influenza Virus in Croatian Pig Farms: A Retrospective Study
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1527; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111527 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 395
Abstract
In a total of 1536 blood serum samples analysed by ELISA, antibodies for IAV nucleoprotein (NP) were detected in 30.3%. Results from HI show that the most common subtype of swIAV in the Croatian pig population was H1N1 (44.6%), followed by H3N2 (42.7%) [...] Read more.
In a total of 1536 blood serum samples analysed by ELISA, antibodies for IAV nucleoprotein (NP) were detected in 30.3%. Results from HI show that the most common subtype of swIAV in the Croatian pig population was H1N1 (44.6%), followed by H3N2 (42.7%) and H1N2 (26.3%). Antibodies to at least one subtype were detected in 62.19% of blood serum samples. Detection of swIAV antigen was performed by IHC and detected in 8 of 28 lung samples collected post-mortem. The matrix (M) gene was detected in nine of one hundred and forty-two lung tissue samples and in seven of twenty-nine nasopharyngeal swabs. Phylogenetic analysis of amplified HA and NA gene fragments in Croatian isolates suggests the presence of swIAV H1avN1av. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Swine Viral Diseases)
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Article
Antagonistic Strain Bacillus amyloliquefaciens XZ34-1 for Controlling Bipolaris sorokiniana and Promoting Growth in Wheat
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1526; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111526 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 428
Abstract
Common root rot, caused by Bipolaris sorokiniana, is one of the most prevalent diseases of wheat and has led to major declines in wheat yield and quality worldwide. Here, strain XZ34-1 was isolated from soil and identified as Bacillus amyloliquefaciens based on [...] Read more.
Common root rot, caused by Bipolaris sorokiniana, is one of the most prevalent diseases of wheat and has led to major declines in wheat yield and quality worldwide. Here, strain XZ34-1 was isolated from soil and identified as Bacillus amyloliquefaciens based on the morphological, physiological, biochemical characteristics and 16S rDNA sequence. Culture filtrate (CF) of strain XZ34-1 showed a high inhibition rate against B.sorokiniana and had a broad antifungal spectrum. It also remarkably inhibited the mycelial growth and spore germination of B. sorokiniana. In pot control experiments, the incidence and disease index of common root rot in wheat seedlings were decreased after treatment with CF, and the biological control efficacy was significant, up to 78.24%. Further studies showed XZ34-1 could produce antifungal bioactive substances and had the potential of promoting plant growth. Lipopeptide genes detection with PCR indicated that strain XZ34-1 may produce lipopeptides. Furthermore, activities of defense-related enzymes were enhanced in wheat seedlings after inoculation with B.sorokiniana and treatment with CF, which showed induced resistance could be produced in wheat to resist pathogens. These results reveal that strain XZ34-1 is a promising candidate for application as a biological control agent against B.sorokiniana. Full article
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Article
Colistin Induces Resistance through Biofilm Formation, via Increased phoQ Expression, in Avian Pathogenic Escherichia coli
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1525; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111525 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 484
Abstract
This study aimed to optimize the colistin-based antibacterial therapy to prevent antimicrobial resistance related to biofilm formation in avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) in chicken. Of all the bacterial isolates (n = 136), 69 were identified as APEC by polymerase chain reaction [...] Read more.
This study aimed to optimize the colistin-based antibacterial therapy to prevent antimicrobial resistance related to biofilm formation in avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) in chicken. Of all the bacterial isolates (n = 136), 69 were identified as APEC by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Through a series of antibiotic susceptibility tests, susceptibility to colistin (<2 μg/mL) was confirmed in all isolates. Hence, a mutant selection window (MSW) was determined to obtain colistin-induced resistant bacteria. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of colistin against the colistin-induced resistant APEC strains ranged from 8 to 16 μg/mL. To identify the inhibitory activity of colistin against the resistant strains, the mutant prevention concentration (MPC) was investigated for 72 h, and the single and multi-dose colistin activities were determined through the time-kill curve against APEC strains. Bacterial regrowth occurred after 12 h at a double MIC50 concentration (1.00 μg/mL), and regrowth was not inhibited even during multiple exposures. However, upon exposure to 8 μg/mL—a concentration that was close to the MPC—the growth of APEC was inhibited, including in the resistant strains. Additionally, colistin-induced resistant strains showed a slower growth compared with the susceptible ones. Colistin-induced resistant APEC strains did not show colistin resistance gene (mcr-1). However, the expression of higher mgrB and phoQ levels was observed in the resistant strains. Furthermore, these strains showed increased formation of biofilm. Hence, the present study indicated that colistin could induce resistance through the increased formation of biofilm in APEC strains by enhancing the expression of phoQ. Full article
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Article
The Significance of Circulating Cell-Free DNA Markers in Chronic Hepatitis B Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1524; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111524 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 513
Abstract
(1) Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most serious complication of chronic hepatitis B (CHB). Recently, the detection of circulating cell-free (cf) DNA and nucleosomes has found numerous applications in oncology. This study aimed to examine the levels of serum cfDNA markers and [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is the most serious complication of chronic hepatitis B (CHB). Recently, the detection of circulating cell-free (cf) DNA and nucleosomes has found numerous applications in oncology. This study aimed to examine the levels of serum cfDNA markers and nucleosomes in CHB patients with and without HCC and assess their potential association with HCC patients’ survival. (2) Methods: Nineteen patients with CHB and HCC and 38 matched patients with CHB without cancer development during 5 years of antiviral therapy were included. Stored serum samples were analyzed for cfDNA species, including the cfDNA concentration and levels of Alu115, Alu247, and nucleosomes. DNA integrity was expressed as the Alu247/Alu115 ratio. (3) Results: Compared to controls, HCC patients had higher median Alu247 levels (64.2 vs. 23.2 genomic equivalent, p = 0.004) and DNA integrity (1.0 vs. 0.7, p < 0.001) and a trend for a higher median cfDNA concentration (36.0 vs. 19.5 ng/mL, p = 0.064). Increased DNA integrity (Alu247/Alu115 > 1) was associated with an increased risk of death during the first year after HCC diagnosis (p = 0.016). (4) Conclusions: Levels of Alu247 and DNA integrity in serum cfDNA are elevated in CHB patients with HCC, whereas increased DNA integrity seems to be associated with a worse short-term prognosis in this setting. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pathogen-Host Interactions in Viral Infections)
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Case Report
The Role of QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus in Mycobacterium Tuberculosis Detection in a Severe HIV Immunocompromised Patient—Case Report
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1523; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111523 - 21 Nov 2021
Viewed by 502
Abstract
Tuberculosis (TB) is an important opportunistic infection in HIV-positive people. We are reporting a case of a 31-year-old HIV-infected patient who was hospitalized in July 2021 for dyspnea, cough with mucopurulent sputum and asthenia. He was confirmed to have Serratia liquefaciens pneumonia and [...] Read more.
Tuberculosis (TB) is an important opportunistic infection in HIV-positive people. We are reporting a case of a 31-year-old HIV-infected patient who was hospitalized in July 2021 for dyspnea, cough with mucopurulent sputum and asthenia. He was confirmed to have Serratia liquefaciens pneumonia and acute respiratory failure. The evolution was unfavorable despite the antibiotic, pathogenic and symptomatic treatment. Because the patient had severe immunosuppression (CD4 count = 37 cell/mm3), we used QuantiFERON-TB Gold Plus for the detection of the Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection. The antituberculosis therapy was initiated, which resulted in a significant improvement of the general condition and the patient was discharged with the recommendation to continue antiretroviral therapy, antituberculosis treatment and Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole—single tablet daily for the prophylaxis of Pneumocystis pneumonia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances and Challenges in Tuberculosis Research)
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Article
Prevalence of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Infections among Incarcerated Individuals in Iran: A Cross-Sectional National Bio-behavioral Study in 2019
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1522; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111522 - 21 Nov 2021
Viewed by 482
Abstract
Introduction: To realize the global goals of eliminating hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) by 2030, it is necessary to monitor the status of disease among target populations and undertake the required interventions. This study is the third round of [...] Read more.
Introduction: To realize the global goals of eliminating hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) by 2030, it is necessary to monitor the status of disease among target populations and undertake the required interventions. This study is the third round of surveys to determine the prevalence of hepatitis B and C infections among incarcerated individuals in different provinces of Iran. Methods: This study was conducted in five provinces of Iran (including Kurdistan, Ardabil, West Azerbaijan, Markazi, and Semnan) in 2019. The subjects of the study were selected from incarcerated people in prisons of all provinces that had not been studied in the previous two rounds of the surveys (in 2015 and 2016) in Iran. In this study, 15 prisons were selected and 2475 incarcerated individuals were enrolled into the study based on the multistage sampling method; the selected subjects were surveyed and their dried blood spot (DBS) samples were collected to test HBsAg and HCV-Ab. In cases with a reactive result for HCV-Ab, an HCV-RNA test was also performed on their serum samples. The relationships between independent variables and outcomes were evaluated via logistic regression. Results: Of all participants (2475 subjects) enrolled in the study, 54.18% were selected from northern provinces and 45.82% from the central provinces. The prevalence of HCV-Ab and HBsAg among incarcerated individuals was 5.66% (95% CI: 4.81% to 6.64%) and 2.42% (95% CI: 1.89% to 3.11%), respectively. Among HCV-seropositive individuals, 73.68% (95% CI: 64.70% to 81.01%) had current HCV infection (detectable HCV-RNA). The results showed that histories of imprisonment, drug use, unprotected sexual contact, drug injection, tattooing, and younger age in the first-time drug use in incarcerated individuals significantly increased the risk of HCV transmission. Among these behaviors, drug injection was more likely than other behaviors to result in contracting HCV in incarcerated individuals (OR: 22.91; 95% CI: 14.92–35.18; p < 0.001). Conclusion: To achieve international and national strategies targeted to eliminate HCV and HBV by 2030, it is necessary to pay special attention to prisons in Iran. It is recommended to continue HBV vaccination of eligible people in prisons. Developing screening and treatment protocols for individuals with HCV infection in prisons can help the country to achieve HCV elimination goals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Elimination of Viral Hepatitis)
Article
Entomological Surveillance in Former Malaria-endemic Areas of Southern Italy
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1521; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111521 - 21 Nov 2021
Viewed by 406
Abstract
Malaria still represents a potential public health issue in Italy, and the presence of former Anopheles vectors and cases imported annually merit continuous surveillance. In areas no longer endemic, the concurrent presence of gametocyte carriers and competent vectors makes re-emergence of local transmission [...] Read more.
Malaria still represents a potential public health issue in Italy, and the presence of former Anopheles vectors and cases imported annually merit continuous surveillance. In areas no longer endemic, the concurrent presence of gametocyte carriers and competent vectors makes re-emergence of local transmission possible, as recently reported in Greece. In October 2017, due to the occurrence of four suspected introduced malaria cases in the province of Taranto (Apulia region), entomological investigations were performed to verify the involvement of local anopheline species. In 2019–2020 entomological surveys were extended to other areas historically prone to malaria between the provinces of Taranto and Matera and the province of Foggia (Gargano Promontory). Resting mosquitoes were collected in animal shelters and human dwellings, larvae were sampled in natural and artificial breeding sites, and specimens were both morphologically and molecularly identified. A total of 2228 mosquitoes were collected, 54.3% of which were anophelines. In all the investigated areas, Anopheles labranchiae was the most widespread species, while Anopheles algeriensis was predominant at the Gargano sites, and Anopheles superpictus and Anopheles plumbeus were recorded in the province of Matera. Our findings showed a potentially high receptivity in the surveyed areas, where the abundance of the two former malaria vectors, An. labranchiae and An. superpictus, is related to environmental and climatic parameters and to anthropic activities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Parasites of the Third Millennium)
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Article
Identification and Comparison of Colletotrichum Secreted Effector Candidates Reveal Two Independent Lineages Pathogenic to Soybean
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1520; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111520 - 21 Nov 2021
Viewed by 587
Abstract
Colletotrichum is one of the most important plant pathogenic genus of fungi due to its scientific and economic impact. A wide range of hosts can be infected by Colletotrichum spp., which causes losses in crops of major importance worldwide, such as soybean. Soybean [...] Read more.
Colletotrichum is one of the most important plant pathogenic genus of fungi due to its scientific and economic impact. A wide range of hosts can be infected by Colletotrichum spp., which causes losses in crops of major importance worldwide, such as soybean. Soybean anthracnose is mainly caused by C. truncatum, but other species have been identified at an increasing rate during the last decade, becoming one of the most important limiting factors to soybean production in several regions. To gain a better understanding of the evolutionary origin of soybean anthracnose, we compared the repertoire of effector candidates of four Colletotrichum species pathogenic to soybean and eight species not pathogenic. Our results show that the four species infecting soybean belong to two lineages and do not share any effector candidates. These results strongly suggest that two Colletotrichum lineages have acquired the capability to infect soybean independently. This study also provides, for each lineage, a set of candidate effectors encoding genes that may have important roles in pathogenicity towards soybean offering a new resource useful for further research on soybean anthracnose management. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fungal Pathogenicity Factors)
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Article
Modulation of Production of Th1/Th2 Cytokines in Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells and Neutrophils by Hepatitis C Virus Infection in Chronically Infected Patients
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1519; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111519 - 21 Nov 2021
Viewed by 373
Abstract
This study investigated the influence of Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection on the cytokine production profiles of the peripheral blood monoculear cells (PBMC) and neutrophils in chronically naïve HCV-infected patients. Seventy-five genotype-4 naïve HCV-infected patients (HCV+) and healthy subjects (HCV−) were enrolled. The [...] Read more.
This study investigated the influence of Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection on the cytokine production profiles of the peripheral blood monoculear cells (PBMC) and neutrophils in chronically naïve HCV-infected patients. Seventy-five genotype-4 naïve HCV-infected patients (HCV+) and healthy subjects (HCV−) were enrolled. The neutrophils and the PBMC were separated by density gradient sedimentation and stimulated with a mitogen. The culture supernatants were evaluated for levels of IFN-α, IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, IL-6, IL-9, IL-10, IL-12, and TNF-α using anti-cytokine antibody MACSPlex capture beads. The PBMC cytokine profiles of HCV+ patients showed significantly lower mean values for IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-6, IL-9, and IL-10 (p < 0.0001) as compared to HCV− subjects. In contrast, HCV+ patients showed higher mean levels of PBMC cytokine values for IL-5 and TNF-α (p < 0.0001). As for neutrophils, HCV+ patients showed significantly lower mean levels of IFN-α, IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-9, and IL-10 (p < 0.0001). In contrast, the neutrophils from HCV+ patients showed higher mean levels of IL-5, IL-12, and TNF-α (p < 0.0001). Th1–Th2 cytokine ratios suggested a lower Th1 bias in HCV+ subjects as compared to HCV− subjects. Our results suggest that chronic HCV infection brings about an immunomodulatory effect not only on neutrophils, but also to a lower extent on PBMCs Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Pathogenesis and Immunity)
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Article
Dynamics of Neospora caninum-Associated Abortions in a Dairy Sheep Flock and Results of a Test-and-Cull Control Programme
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1518; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111518 - 20 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 682
Abstract
Neospora caninum is an apicomplexan parasite that can cause abortions and perinatal mortality in sheep. Although ovine neosporosis has been described worldwide, there is a lack of information about the relationship between N. caninum serostatus and the reproductive performance. In this study, we [...] Read more.
Neospora caninum is an apicomplexan parasite that can cause abortions and perinatal mortality in sheep. Although ovine neosporosis has been described worldwide, there is a lack of information about the relationship between N. caninum serostatus and the reproductive performance. In this study, we described the infection dynamics in a dairy sheep flock with an abortion rate up to 25% and a N. caninum seroprevalence of 32%. Abortions were recorded in 36% and 9% of seropositive and seronegative sheep, respectively. Seropositive sheep were more likely to abort twice (OR = 4.44) or three or more times (OR = 10.13) than seronegative sheep. Endogenous transplacental transmission was the main route of transmission since 86% of seropositive sheep had seropositive offspring. Within dams that had any abortion, seropositive sheep were more likely than seronegative ones to have female descendants that aborted (OR = 8.12). The slight increase in seropositivity with the age, the low percentage of animals with postnatal seroconversion or with low avidity antibodies, and the seropositivity of one flock dog, indicated that horizontal transmission might have some relevance in this flock. A control programme based on selective culling of seropositive sheep and replacement with seronegative animals was effective in reducing the abortion rate to 7.2%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Transmissible Diseases Affecting Reproduction in Small Ruminants)
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Review
Fighting HIV-1 Persistence: At the Crossroads of “Shoc-K and B-Lock”
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1517; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111517 - 20 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 614
Abstract
Despite the success of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), integrated HIV-1 proviral DNA cannot be eradicated from an infected individual. HAART is not able to eliminate latently infected cells that remain invisible to the immune system. Viral sanctuaries in specific tissues and immune-privileged [...] Read more.
Despite the success of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART), integrated HIV-1 proviral DNA cannot be eradicated from an infected individual. HAART is not able to eliminate latently infected cells that remain invisible to the immune system. Viral sanctuaries in specific tissues and immune-privileged sites may cause residual viral replication that contributes to HIV-1 persistence. The “Shock or Kick, and Kill” approach uses latency reversing agents (LRAs) in the presence of HAART, followed by cell-killing due to viral cytopathic effects and immune-mediated clearance. Different LRAs may be required for the in vivo reactivation of HIV-1 in different CD4+ T cell reservoirs, leading to the activation of cellular transcription factors acting on the integrated proviral HIV-1 LTR. An important requirement for LRA drugs is the reactivation of viral transcription and replication without causing a generalized immune activation. Toll-like receptors, RIG-I like receptors, and STING agonists have emerged recently as a new class of LRAs that augment selective apoptosis in reactivated T lymphocytes. The challenge is to extend in vitro observations to HIV-1 positive patients. Further studies are also needed to overcome the mechanisms that protect latently infected cells from reactivation and/or elimination by the immune system. The Block and Lock alternative strategy aims at using latency promoting/inducing agents (LPAs/LIAs) to block the ability of latent proviruses to reactivate transcription in order to achieve a long term lock down of potential residual virus replication. The Shock and Kill and the Block and Lock approaches may not be only alternative to each other, but, if combined together (one after the other), or given all at once [namely “Shoc-K(kill) and B(block)-Lock”], they may represent a better approach to a functional cure. Full article
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Article
Colistin Resistance Onset Strategies and Genomic Mosaicism in Clinical Acinetobacter baumannii Lineages
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1516; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111516 - 20 Nov 2021
Viewed by 495
Abstract
The treatment of multidrug-resistant Gram-negative infections is based on colistin. As result, COL-resistance (COL-R) can develop and spread. In Acinetobacter baumannii, a crucial step is to understand COL-R onset and stability, still far to be elucidated. COL-R phenotypic stability, onset modalities, and [...] Read more.
The treatment of multidrug-resistant Gram-negative infections is based on colistin. As result, COL-resistance (COL-R) can develop and spread. In Acinetobacter baumannii, a crucial step is to understand COL-R onset and stability, still far to be elucidated. COL-R phenotypic stability, onset modalities, and phylogenomics were investigated in a clinical A. baumannii sample showing a COL resistant (COLR) phenotype at first isolation. COL-R was confirmed by Minimum-Inhibitory-Concentrations as well as investigated by Resistance-Induction assays and Population-Analysis-Profiles (PAPs) to determine: (i) stability; (ii) inducibility; (iii) heteroresistance. Genomics was performed by Mi-Seq Whole-Genome-Sequencing, Phylogenesis, and Genomic Epidemiology by bioinformatics. COLRA. baumannii were subdivided as follows: (i) 3 A. baumannii with stable and high COL MICs defining the “homogeneous-resistant” onset phenotype; (ii) 6 A. baumannii with variable and lower COL MICs displaying a “COL-inducible” onset phenotype responsible for adaptive-resistance or a “subpopulation” onset phenotype responsible for COL-heteroresistance. COL-R stability and onset strategies were not uniquely linked to the amount of LPS and cell envelope charge. Phylogenomics categorized 3 lineages clustering stable and/or unstable COL-R phenotypes with increasing genomic complexity. Likewise, different nsSNP profiling in genes already associated with COL-R marked the stable and/or unstable COL-R phenotypes. Our investigation finds out that A. baumannii can range through unstable or stable COLR phenotypes emerging via different “onset strategies” within phylogenetic lineages displaying increasing genomic mosaicism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Status of Acinetobacter Infections)
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Systematic Review
Nasopharyngeal Swabs vs. Nasal Aspirates for Respiratory Virus Detection: A Systematic Review
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1515; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111515 - 20 Nov 2021
Viewed by 478
Abstract
Nasal pathogen detection sensitivities can be as low as 70% despite advances in molecular diagnostics. This may be linked to the choice of sampling method. A diagnostic test accuracy review for sensitivity was undertaken to compare sensitivity of swabbing to the nasopharynx and [...] Read more.
Nasal pathogen detection sensitivities can be as low as 70% despite advances in molecular diagnostics. This may be linked to the choice of sampling method. A diagnostic test accuracy review for sensitivity was undertaken to compare sensitivity of swabbing to the nasopharynx and extracting nasal aspirates, using the PRISMA protocol, Cochrane rapid review methodology, and QUADAS-2 risk of bias tools, with meta-analysis of included studies. Sensitivities were calculated by a consensus standard of positivity by either method as the ‘gold standard.’ Insufficient sampling methodology, cross sectional study designs, and studies pooling samples across anatomical sites were excluded. Of 13 subsequently eligible studies, 8 had ‘high’ risk of bias, and 5 had ‘high’ applicability concerns. There were no statistical differences in overall sensitivities between collection methods for eight different viruses, and this did not differ with use of PCR, immunofluorescence, or culture. In one study alone, Influenza H1N1(2009) favored nasopharyngeal swabs, with aspirates having 93.3% of the sensitivity of swabs (p > 0.001). Similarly equivocal sensitivities were noted in reports detecting bacteria. The chain of sampling, from anatomical site to laboratory results, features different potential foci along which sensitivity may be lost. A fair body of evidence exists that use of a different sampling method will not yield more respiratory pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Human Pathogens Infections)
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Article
Highly Specific Sigma Receptor Ligands Exhibit Anti-Viral Properties in SARS-CoV-2 Infected Cells
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1514; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111514 - 20 Nov 2021
Viewed by 20087
Abstract
(1) Background: There is a strong need for prevention and treatment strategies for COVID-19 that are not impacted by SARS-CoV-2 mutations emerging in variants of concern. After virus infection, host ER resident sigma receptors form direct interactions with non-structural SARS-CoV-2 proteins present in [...] Read more.
(1) Background: There is a strong need for prevention and treatment strategies for COVID-19 that are not impacted by SARS-CoV-2 mutations emerging in variants of concern. After virus infection, host ER resident sigma receptors form direct interactions with non-structural SARS-CoV-2 proteins present in the replication complex. (2) Methods: In this work, highly specific sigma receptor ligands were investigated for their ability to inhibit both SARS-CoV-2 genome replication and virus induced cellular toxicity. This study found antiviral activity associated with agonism of the sigma-1 receptor (e.g., SA4503), ligation of the sigma-2 receptor (e.g., CM398), and a combination of the two pathways (e.g., AZ66). (3) Results: Intermolecular contacts between these ligands and sigma receptors were identified by structural modeling. (4) Conclusions: Sigma receptor ligands and drugs with off-target sigma receptor binding characteristics were effective at inhibiting SARS-CoV-2 infection in primate and human cells, representing a potential therapeutic avenue for COVID-19 prevention and treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Feature Papers in Viral Pathogens)
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Article
Fox Serum Proteomics Analysis Suggests Host-Specific Responses to Angiostrongylus vasorum Infection in Canids
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1513; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111513 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 440
Abstract
Dogs infected with the cardiopulmonary nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum may suffer from respiratory distress and/or bleeding disorders. Descriptions of clinical signs in foxes are rare, despite high prevalence. To evaluate the impact of infection on coagulation and immune response, serum proteins from eight experimentally [...] Read more.
Dogs infected with the cardiopulmonary nematode Angiostrongylus vasorum may suffer from respiratory distress and/or bleeding disorders. Descriptions of clinical signs in foxes are rare, despite high prevalence. To evaluate the impact of infection on coagulation and immune response, serum proteins from eight experimentally infected foxes before and after inoculation (day 0, 35, 84, 154) were subjected to differential proteomic analyses based on quantitative data and compared to available data from dogs. The number of proteins with differential abundance compared to the uninfected baseline increased with chronicity of infection. Bone marrow proteoglycan, chitinase 3-like protein 1 and pulmonary surfactant-associated protein B were among the most prominently increased proteins. The abundance of several proteins involved in coagulation was decreased. Enriched pathways obtained from both increased and decreased proteins included, among others, “platelet degranulation” and “haemostasis”, and indicated both activation and suppression of coagulation. Qualitative comparison to dog data suggests some parallel serum proteomic alterations. The comparison, however, also indicates that foxes have a more adequate immunopathological response to A. vasorum infection compared to dogs, facilitating persistent infections in foxes. Our findings imply that foxes may be more tolerant to A. vasorum infection, as compared to dogs, reflecting a longer evolutionary host–parasite adaptation in foxes, which constitute a key wildlife reservoir. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pathogenesis and Diagnostics of Angiostrongylus vasorum Infection)
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Review
The Interplay between Salmonella and Intestinal Innate Immune Cells in Chickens
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1512; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111512 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 766
Abstract
Salmonellosis is a common infection in poultry, which results in huge economic losses in the poultry industry. At the same time, Salmonella infections are a threat to public health, since contaminated poultry products can lead to zoonotic infections. Antibiotics as feed additives have [...] Read more.
Salmonellosis is a common infection in poultry, which results in huge economic losses in the poultry industry. At the same time, Salmonella infections are a threat to public health, since contaminated poultry products can lead to zoonotic infections. Antibiotics as feed additives have proven to be an effective prophylactic option to control Salmonella infections, but due to resistance issues in humans and animals, the use of antimicrobials in food animals has been banned in Europe. Hence, there is an urgent need to look for alternative strategies that can protect poultry against Salmonella infections. One such alternative could be to strengthen the innate immune system in young chickens in order to prevent early life infections. This can be achieved by administration of immune modulating molecules that target innate immune cells, for example via feed, or by in-ovo applications. We aimed to review the innate immune system in the chicken intestine; the main site of Salmonella entrance, and its responsiveness to Salmonella infection. Identifying the most important players in the innate immune response in the intestine is a first step in designing targeted approaches for immune modulation. Full article
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Review
Tick Immunobiology and Extracellular Traps: An Integrative Vision to Control of Vectors
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1511; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111511 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 499
Abstract
Ticks are hematophagous ectoparasites that infest a diverse number of vertebrate hosts. The tick immunobiology plays a significant role in establishing and transmitting many pathogens to their hosts. To control tick infestations, the acaricide application is a commonly used method with severe environmental [...] Read more.
Ticks are hematophagous ectoparasites that infest a diverse number of vertebrate hosts. The tick immunobiology plays a significant role in establishing and transmitting many pathogens to their hosts. To control tick infestations, the acaricide application is a commonly used method with severe environmental consequences and the selection of tick-resistant populations. With these drawbacks, new tick control methods need to be developed, and the immune system of ticks contains a plethora of potential candidates for vaccine design. Additionally, tick immunity is based on an orchestrated action of humoral and cellular immune responses. Therefore, the actors of these responses are the object of our study in this review since they are new targets in anti-tick vaccine design. We present their role in the immune response that positions them as feasible targets that can be blocked, inhibited, interfered with, and overexpressed, and then elucidate a new method to control tick infestations through the development of vaccines. We also propose Extracellular Traps Formation (ETosis) in ticks as a process to eliminate their natural enemies and those pathogens they transmit (vectorial capacity), which results attractive since they are a source of acting molecules with potential use as vaccines. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in the Immunobiology of Parasitic Diseases)
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Review
Methodologies for Generating Brain Organoids to Model Viral Pathogenesis in the CNS
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1510; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111510 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 565
Abstract
(1) Background: The human brain is of interest in viral research because it is often the target of viruses. Neurological infections can result in consequences in the CNS, which can result in death or lifelong sequelae. Organoids modeling the CNS are notable because [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The human brain is of interest in viral research because it is often the target of viruses. Neurological infections can result in consequences in the CNS, which can result in death or lifelong sequelae. Organoids modeling the CNS are notable because they are derived from stem cells that differentiate into specific brain cells such as neural progenitors, neurons, astrocytes, and glial cells. Numerous protocols have been developed for the generation of CNS organoids, and our goal was to describe the various CNS organoid models available for viral pathogenesis research to serve as a guide to determine which protocol might be appropriate based on research goal, timeframe, and budget. (2) Methods: Articles for this review were found in Pubmed, Scopus and EMBASE. The search terms used were “brain + organoid” and “CNS + organoid” (3) Results: There are two main methods for organoid generation, and the length of time for organoid generation varied from 28 days to over 2 months. The costs for generating a population of organoids ranged from USD 1000 to 5000. (4) Conclusions: There are numerous methods for generating organoids representing multiple regions of the brain, with several types of modifications for fine-tuning the model to a researcher’s specifications. Organoid models of the CNS can serve as a platform for characterization and mechanistic studies that can reduce or eliminate the use of animals, especially for viruses that only cause disease in the human CNS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Tools in 3D Host-pathogen Interactions)
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Review
FLO11, a Developmental Gene Conferring Impressive Adaptive Plasticity to the Yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1509; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111509 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 498
Abstract
The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae has a remarkable ability to adapt its lifestyle to fluctuating or hostile environmental conditions. This adaptation most often involves morphological changes such as pseudofilaments, biofilm formation, or cell aggregation in the form of flocs. A prerequisite for these phenotypic [...] Read more.
The yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae has a remarkable ability to adapt its lifestyle to fluctuating or hostile environmental conditions. This adaptation most often involves morphological changes such as pseudofilaments, biofilm formation, or cell aggregation in the form of flocs. A prerequisite for these phenotypic changes is the ability to self-adhere and to adhere to abiotic surfaces. This ability is conferred by specialized surface proteins called flocculins, which are encoded by the FLO genes family in this yeast species. This mini-review focuses on the flocculin encoded by FLO11, which differs significantly from other flocculins in domain sequence and mode of genetic and epigenetic regulation, giving it an impressive plasticity that enables yeast cells to swiftly adapt to hostile environments or into new ecological niches. Furthermore, the common features of Flo11p with those of adhesins from pathogenic yeasts make FLO11 a good model to study the molecular mechanism underlying cell adhesion and biofilm formation, which are part of the initial step leading to fungal infections. Full article
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Review
A Review of the Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Colorectal Cancer Screening: Implications and Solutions
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1508; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111508 - 19 Nov 2021
Viewed by 614
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all aspects of medical care, including cancer screening and preventative measures. Colorectal cancer screening declined significantly at the onset of the pandemic as the result of an intentional effort to conserve resources, prioritize emergencies and reduce risk of [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted all aspects of medical care, including cancer screening and preventative measures. Colorectal cancer screening declined significantly at the onset of the pandemic as the result of an intentional effort to conserve resources, prioritize emergencies and reduce risk of transmission. There has already been an increase in diagnosis at more advanced stages and symptomatic emergencies due to suspended screenings. As endoscopy units find their way back to pre-pandemic practices, a backlog of cases remains. The missed CRC diagnoses amongst the missed screenings carry a risk of increased morbidity and mortality which will only increase as time-to-diagnosis grows. This review discusses the impact of COVID-19 on colonoscopy screening rates, trends in stages/symptoms/circumstances at diagnosis, and economic and social impact of delayed diagnosis. Triaging and use of FITs are proposed solutions to the challenge of catching up with the large number of pandemic-driven missed CRC screenings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral and Bacterial Pathogens in Gastrointestinal Cancer)
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Article
The Role of Lactic Acid on Wound Healing, Cell Growth, Cell Cycle Kinetics, and Gene Expression of Cultured Junctional Epithelium Cells in the Pathophysiology of Periodontal Disease
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1507; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111507 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 456
Abstract
Lactic acid (LA) is short-chain fatty acid, such as butyric acid and propionic acid, that is produced as a metabolite of lactic acid bacteria, including periodontopathic bacteria. These short-chain fatty acids have positive effects on human health but can also have negative effects, [...] Read more.
Lactic acid (LA) is short-chain fatty acid, such as butyric acid and propionic acid, that is produced as a metabolite of lactic acid bacteria, including periodontopathic bacteria. These short-chain fatty acids have positive effects on human health but can also have negative effects, such as the promotion of periodontal disease (PD), which is caused by periodontal pathogens present in the gingival sulcus. PD is characterized by apical migration of junctional epithelium, deepening of pockets, and alveolar bone loss. Thus, the junctional epithelial cells that form the bottom of the gingival sulcus are extremely important in investigating the pathophysiology of PD. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of LA on wound healing, cell growth, cell cycle kinetics, and gene expression of cultured junctional epithelium cells. The results showed that stimulation with 10 mM LA slowed wound healing of the junctional epithelial cell layer and arrested the cell cycle in the G0/G1 (early cell cycle) phase, thereby inhibiting cell growth. However, cell destruction was not observed. LA also enhanced mRNA expression of integrin α5, interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, intercellular adhesion molecule-1, and receptor activator of nuclear factor kappa-B ligand. The results of this study suggest that stimulation of junctional epithelial cells with high concentrations of LA could exacerbate PD, similarly to butyric acid and propionic acid. Full article
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Communication
Host Protease Activity on Bacterial Pathogens Promotes Complement and Antibiotic-Directed Killing
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1506; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111506 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 438
Abstract
Our understanding of how the host immune system thwarts bacterial evasive mechanisms remains incomplete. Here, we show that host protease neutrophil elastase acts on Acinetobacter baumannii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa to destroy factors that prevent serum-associated, complement-directed killing. The protease activity also enhances bacterial [...] Read more.
Our understanding of how the host immune system thwarts bacterial evasive mechanisms remains incomplete. Here, we show that host protease neutrophil elastase acts on Acinetobacter baumannii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa to destroy factors that prevent serum-associated, complement-directed killing. The protease activity also enhances bacterial susceptibility to antibiotics in sera. These findings implicate a new paradigm where host protease activity on bacteria acts combinatorially with the host complement system and antibiotics to defeat bacterial pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pseudomonas aeruginosa Pathogenesis)
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Article
Seroprevalence of Antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in Guangdong Province, China between March to June 2020
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1505; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111505 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 525
Abstract
Guangdong province, located in South China, is an important economic hub with a large domestic migrant population and was among the earliest areas to report COVID-19 cases outside of Wuhan. We conducted a cross-sectional, age-stratified serosurvey to determine the seroprevalence of antibodies against [...] Read more.
Guangdong province, located in South China, is an important economic hub with a large domestic migrant population and was among the earliest areas to report COVID-19 cases outside of Wuhan. We conducted a cross-sectional, age-stratified serosurvey to determine the seroprevalence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 after the emergence of COVID-19 in Guangdong. We tested 14,629 residual serum samples that were submitted for clinical testing from 21 prefectures between March and June 2020 for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies using a magnetic particle based chemiluminescent enzyme immunoassay and validated the results using a pseudovirus neutralization assay. We found 21 samples positive for SARS-CoV-2 IgG, resulting in an estimated age- and sex-weighted seroprevalence of 0.15% (95% CI: 0.06–0.24%). The overall age-specific seroprevalence was 0.07% (95% CI: 0.01–0.24%) in persons up to 9 years old, 0.22% (95% CI: 0.03–0.79%) in persons aged 10–19, 0.16% (95% CI: 0.07–0.33%) in persons aged 20–39, 0.13% (95% CI: 0.03–0.33%) in persons aged 40–59 and 0.18% (95% CI: 0.07–0.40%) in persons ≥60 years old. Fourteen (67%) samples had pseudovirus neutralization titers to S-protein, suggesting most of the IgG-positive samples were true-positives. Seroprevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 was low, indicating that there were no hidden epidemics during this period. Vaccination is urgently needed to increase population immunity to SARS-CoV-2. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Characterization of Antibody Responses to Virus Infections in Humans)
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Article
Trichinella Outbreaks on Pig Farms in Poland in 2012–2020
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1504; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111504 - 18 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 489
Abstract
Trichinella nematodes continue to circulate in various hosts both in the domestic and sylvatic cycles. In the majority of countries in Europe, wild boars have been noticed as a primary source of Trichinella spp. infections in humans. However, in some regions, the meat [...] Read more.
Trichinella nematodes continue to circulate in various hosts both in the domestic and sylvatic cycles. In the majority of countries in Europe, wild boars have been noticed as a primary source of Trichinella spp. infections in humans. However, in some regions, the meat of pigs containing Trichinella spp. larvae can still be a cause of trichinellosis. Therefore, in the present study, we aimed to determine and present actual data on the occurrence of Trichinella spp. on pig farms (Sus scrofa f. domestica) in Poland. In this study, over 194 million pigs, slaughtered for commercial and personal purposes between 2012 and 2020, were tested with a digestion method according to the official rules for Trichinella control. Positive results were noticed in 172 pigs which gives an overall prevalence of 0.000088%. On seven farms, rats (Rattus norvegicus) infected with Trichinella spp. were also discovered. The species identification showed pigs were infected with Trichinella spiralis on 26 farms, and on four farms pigs with Trichinella britovi infections were found. Therefore, it is important to constantly monitor pigs for the presence of these parasites, especially in view of the growing interest in organic meat originated from ecological farms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Parasitic Pathogens)
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Article
Emergence of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus ST239/241 SCCmec-III Mercury in Eastern Algeria
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1503; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111503 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 578
Abstract
In this paper, we investigate the epidemiology of infections-associated Staphylococcusaureus (S. aureus) from the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) at University Hospital Center of Constantine (UHCC) in Algeria, with a special emphasis on methicillin-resistant strains (MRSA) revealed by cefoxitin disks [...] Read more.
In this paper, we investigate the epidemiology of infections-associated Staphylococcusaureus (S. aureus) from the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) at University Hospital Center of Constantine (UHCC) in Algeria, with a special emphasis on methicillin-resistant strains (MRSA) revealed by cefoxitin disks (30 μg), then confirmed by penicillin-binding protein (PBP2a) agglutination and real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) targeting mecA and mecC genes. Staphylococcal Cassette Chromosome mec (SCCmec type), staphylococcal protein A (spa-type), multilocus sequence type (MLST), Panton–Valentine Leucocidin (PVL), and toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 (TSST-1) were further investigated in all isolates, and whole genome sequencing was performed for a selected subset of three hospital-acquired MRSA (HA-MRSA) isolates. A measurement of 80% out of the 50 S. aureus isolates were identified as HA-MRSA harbouring the mecA gene, and 72.5% of them were multidrug resistant (MDR). Twelve STs, four different SCCmec cassettes, fourteen spa types, ten isolates Panton–Valentine Leukocidin (PVL)-positive, and three isolates TSST-1 were identified. Interestingly, there was a high prevalence (n = 29; 72.5%) of a worrisome emerging clone: the HA-MRSA ST239/241 SCCmec-III mercury with PVL negative, resistant to β-lactams, aminoglycosides, quinolones, and tetracyclines. Other clones of HA-MRSA isolates were also identified, including PVL-positive ST80 SCCmec-IV/SCCmec-unknown (22.5%), ST34 SCCmec-V with TSST-1 positive (2.5%), and PVL-negative ST72 SCCmec-II (2.5%). Genome analysis enables us to describe the first detection of both PVL-negative HA-MRSA ST239/241 SCCmec-III mercury carrying ccrC, as well as SCCmec-V cassette, which dramatically changes the epidemiology of S. aureus infections in one of the hospitals in eastern Algeria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Staphylococcus Infections in Humans and Animals)
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Review
Review and Perspectives on the Structure–Function Relationships of the Gag Subunits of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1502; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111502 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 533
Abstract
The Gag polyprotein is implied in the budding as well as the establishment of the supramolecular architecture of infectious retroviral particles. It is also involved in the early phases of the replication of retroviruses by protecting and transporting the viral genome towards the [...] Read more.
The Gag polyprotein is implied in the budding as well as the establishment of the supramolecular architecture of infectious retroviral particles. It is also involved in the early phases of the replication of retroviruses by protecting and transporting the viral genome towards the nucleus of the infected cell until its integration in the host genome. Therefore, understanding the structure–function relationships of the Gag subunits is crucial as each of them can represent a therapeutic target. Though the field has been explored for some time in the area of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), it is only in the last decade that structural data on Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) Gag subunits have emerged. As FIV is an important veterinary issue, both in domestic cats and endangered feline species, such data are of prime importance for the development of anti-FIV molecules targeting Gag. This review will focus on the recent advances and perspectives on the structure–function relationships of each subunit of the FIV Gag polyprotein. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Retrovirus)
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Article
Tsetse Bloodmeal Analyses Incriminate the Common Warthog Phacochoerus africanus as an Important Cryptic Host of Animal Trypanosomes in Smallholder Cattle Farming Communities in Shimba Hills, Kenya
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1501; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111501 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 518
Abstract
Trypanosomes are endemic and retard cattle health in Shimba Hills, Kenya. Wildlife in the area act as reservoirs of the parasites. However, wild animal species that harbor and expose cattle to tsetse-borne trypanosomes are not well known in Shimba Hills. Using xeno-monitoring surveillance [...] Read more.
Trypanosomes are endemic and retard cattle health in Shimba Hills, Kenya. Wildlife in the area act as reservoirs of the parasites. However, wild animal species that harbor and expose cattle to tsetse-borne trypanosomes are not well known in Shimba Hills. Using xeno-monitoring surveillance to investigate wild animal reservoirs and sources of trypanosomes in Shimba Hills, we screened 696 trypanosome-infected and uninfected tsetse flies for vertebrate DNA using multiple-gene PCR-High Resolution Melting analysis and amplicon sequencing. Results revealed that tsetse flies fed on 13 mammalian species, preferentially Phacochoerus africanus (warthogs) (17.39%, 95% CI: 14.56–20.21) and Bos taurus (cattle) (11.35%, 95% CI: 8.99–13.71). Some tsetse flies showed positive cases of bloodmeals from multiple hosts (3.45%, 95% CI: 2.09–4.81), including warthog and cattle (0.57%, 95% CI: 0.01–1.14). Importantly, tsetse flies that took bloodmeals from warthog had significant risk of infections with Trypanosoma vivax (5.79%, 95% CI: 1.57–10.00), T. congolense (7.44%, 95% CI: 2.70–12.18), and T. brucei sl (2.48%, 95% CI: −0.33–5.29). These findings implicate warthogs as important reservoirs of tsetse-borne trypanosomes affecting cattle in Shimba Hills and provide valuable epidemiological insights to underpin the parasites targeted management in Nagana vector control programs in the area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Epidemiology of Trypanosomes)
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Communication
Hitching a Ride: Examining the Ability of a Specialist Baculovirus to Translocate through Its Insect Host’s Food Plant
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1500; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111500 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 440
Abstract
Plant vascular systems can translocate the entomopathogen Bacillus thuringiensis from the soil into plant tissues. However, whether other soil dwelling entomopathogens utilize plant vascular tissue for movement has not yet been fully explored. We used Spodoptera frugiperda multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (SfMNPV) to evaluate whether [...] Read more.
Plant vascular systems can translocate the entomopathogen Bacillus thuringiensis from the soil into plant tissues. However, whether other soil dwelling entomopathogens utilize plant vascular tissue for movement has not yet been fully explored. We used Spodoptera frugiperda multiple nucleopolyhedrovirus (SfMNPV) to evaluate whether baculoviruses, a common entomopathogen and bioinsecticide, can be transported through the plant vascular pathways of Zea mays. We found that our treatments did not allow a sufficient virus translocation into the plant to induce a lethal infection in insects, which was confirmed by a molecular analysis. While other entomopathogens translocate, baculoviruses may not be one of them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Viral Pathogens)
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Article
The 4-Year Experience with Implementation and Routine Use of Pathogen Reduction in a Brazilian Hospital
Pathogens 2021, 10(11), 1499; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/pathogens10111499 - 18 Nov 2021
Viewed by 494
Abstract
(1) Background: We reviewed the logistics of the implementation of pathogen reduction (PR) using the INTERCEPT Blood System™ for platelets and the experience with routine use and clinical outcomes in the patient population at the Sírio-Libanês Hospital of São Paulo, Brazil. (2) Methods: [...] Read more.
(1) Background: We reviewed the logistics of the implementation of pathogen reduction (PR) using the INTERCEPT Blood System™ for platelets and the experience with routine use and clinical outcomes in the patient population at the Sírio-Libanês Hospital of São Paulo, Brazil. (2) Methods: Platelet concentrate (PC), including pathogen reduced (PR-PC) production, inventory management, discard rates, blood utilization, and clinical outcomes were analyzed over the 40 months before and after PR implementation. Age distribution and wastage rates were compared over the 10 months before and after approval for PR-PC to be stored for up to seven days. (3) Results: A 100% PR-PC inventory was achieved by increasing double apheresis collections and production of double doses using pools of two single apheresis units. Discard rates decreased from 6% to 3% after PR implementation and further decreased to 1.2% after seven-day storage extension for PR-PCs. The blood utilization remained stable, with no increase in component utilization. A significant decrease in adverse transfusion events was observed after the PR implementation. (4) Conclusion: Our experience demonstrates the feasibility for Brazilian blood centers to achieve a 100% PR-PC inventory. All patients at our hospital received PR-PC and showed no increase in blood component utilization and decreased rates of adverse transfusion reactions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pathogen Reduction of Blood Bank Components)
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