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Issue 8, February 22, 2022

CDC Science Clips: Volume 14, Issue 8, February 22, 2022

Science Clips is produced weekly to enhance awareness of emerging scientific knowledge for the public health community. Each article features an Altmetric Attention scoreexternal icon to track social and mainstream media mentions.

  1. CDC Authored Publications
    The names of CDC authors are indicated in bold text.
    Articles published in the past 6-8 weeks authored by CDC or ATSDR staff.
    • Antimicrobial Resistance and Antibiotic Stewardship
      1. Monitoring emerging human immunodeficiency virus drug resistance in Sub-Saharan Africa in the era of dolutegravirexternal icon
        da Silva J, Pals S, Chang J, Hackett S, Godfrey C, Raizes E.
        J Infect Dis. 2022 Feb 1;225(3):364-366.
        Dolutegravir-based regimens are now standard of care for human immunodeficiency virus treatment for millions of people around sub-Saharan Africa. To ensure its continued efficacy, monitoring of emerging drug resistance that inform a treatment strategy among those failing is crucial. In this report, we outline the US President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief to leverage viral load infrastructure to implement effective drug resistance surveillance in the countries it supports.

      2. In the absence of point-of-care gonorrhea diagnostics that report antibiotic susceptibility, gonorrhea treatment is empiric and determined by standardized guidelines. These guidelines are informed by estimates of resistance prevalence from national surveillance systems. We examined whether guidelines informed by local, rather than national, surveillance data could reduce the incidence of gonorrhea and increase the effective lifespan of antibiotics used in treatment guidelines. We used a transmission dynamic model of gonorrhea among men who have sex with men (MSM) in 16 U.S. metropolitan areas to determine whether spatially adaptive treatment guidelines based on local estimates of resistance prevalence can extend the effective lifespan of hypothetical antibiotics. The rate of gonorrhea cases in these metropolitan areas was 5,548 cases per 100,000 MSM in 2017. Under the current strategy of updating the treatment guideline when the prevalence of resistance exceeds 5%, we showed that spatially adaptive guidelines could reduce the annual rate of gonorrhea cases by 200 cases (95% uncertainty interval: 169, 232) per 100,000 MSM population while extending the use of a first-line antibiotic by 0.75 (0.55, 0.95) years. One potential strategy to reduce the incidence of gonorrhea while extending the effective lifespan of antibiotics is to inform treatment guidelines based on local, rather than national, resistance prevalence.

    • Chronic Diseases and Conditions
      1. In-hospital and 1-year mortality trends in a national cohort of US veterans with acute kidney injuryexternal icon
        Sohaney R, Yin H, Shahinian V, Saran R, Burrows NR, Pavkov ME, Banerjee T, Hsu CY, Powe N, Steffick D, Zivin K, Heung M.
        Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2022 Feb;17(2):184-193.
        BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: AKI, a frequent complication among hospitalized patients, confers excess short- and long-term mortality. We sought to determine trends in in-hospital and 1-year mortality associated with AKI as defined by Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes consensus criteria. DESIGN, SETTING, PARTICIPANTS, & MEASUREMENTS: This retrospective cohort study used data from the national Veterans Health Administration on all patients hospitalized from October 1, 2008 to September 31, 2017. AKI was defined by Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes serum creatinine criteria. In-hospital and 1-year mortality trends were analyzed in patients with and without AKI using Cox regression with year as a continuous variable. RESULTS: We identified 1,688,457 patients and 2,689,093 hospitalizations across the study period. Among patients with AKI, 6% died in hospital, and 28% died within 1 year. In contrast, in-hospital and 1-year mortality rates were 0.8% and 14%, respectively, among non-AKI hospitalizations. During the study period, there was a slight decline in crude in-hospital AKI-associated mortality (hazard ratio, 0.98 per year; 95% confidence interval, 0.98 to 0.99) that was attenuated after accounting for patient demographics, comorbid conditions, and acute hospitalization characteristics (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.99 per year; 95% confidence interval, 0.99 to 1.00). This stable temporal trend in mortality persisted at 1 year (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.00 per year; 95% confidence interval, 0.99 to 1.00). CONCLUSIONS: AKI associated mortality remains high, as greater than one in four patients with AKI died within 1 year of hospitalization. Over the past decade, there seems to have been no significant progress toward improving in-hospital or long-term AKI survivorship.

      2. The bidirectional longitudinal association between depressive symptoms and HbA(1c) : A systematic review and meta-analysisexternal icon
        Beran M, Muzambi R, Geraets A, Albertorio-Diaz JR, Adriaanse MC, Iversen MM, Kokoszka A, Nefs G, Nouwen A, Pouwer F, Huber JW, Schmitt A, Schram MT.
        Diabet Med. 2022 Feb;39(2):e14671.
        AIM: To investigate whether there is a bidirectional longitudinal association of depression with HbA(1c) . METHODS: We conducted a systematic literature search in PubMed, PsycINFO, CINAHL and EMBASE for observational, longitudinal studies published from January 2000 to September 2020, assessing the association between depression and HbA(1c) in adults. We assessed study quality with the Newcastle-Ottawa-Scale. Pooled effect estimates were reported as partial correlation coefficients (r(p) ) or odds ratios (OR). RESULTS: We retrieved 1642 studies; 26 studies were included in the systematic review and eleven in the meta-analysis. Most studies (16/26) focused on type 2 diabetes. Study quality was rated as good (n = 19), fair (n = 2) and poor (n = 5). Of the meta-analysed studies, six investigated the longitudinal association between self-reported depressive symptoms and HbA(1c) and five the reverse longitudinal association, with a combined sample size of n = 48,793 and a mean follow-up of 2 years. Higher levels of baseline depressive symptoms were associated with subsequent higher levels of HbA(1c) (partial r = 0.07; [95% CI 0.03, 0.12]; I(2) 38%). Higher baseline HbA(1c) values were also associated with 18% increased risk of (probable) depression (OR = 1.18; [95% CI 1.12,1.25]; I(2) 0.0%). CONCLUSIONS: Our findings support a bidirectional longitudinal association between depressive symptoms and HbA(1c) . However, the observed effect sizes were small and future research in large-scale longitudinal studies is needed to confirm this association. Future studies should investigate the role of type of diabetes and depression, diabetes distress and diabetes self-management behaviours. Our results may have clinical implications, as depressive symptoms and HbA(1c) levels could be targeted concurrently in the prevention and treatment of diabetes and depression. REGISTRATION: PROSPERO ID CRD42019147551.

      3. Tracking cardiac rehabilitation utilization in Medicare beneficiaries: 2017 updateexternal icon
        Keteyian SJ, Jackson SL, Chang A, Brawner CA, Wall HK, Forman DE, Sukul D, Ritchey MD, Sperling LS.
        J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. 2022 Feb 8.
        PURPOSE: This study updates cardiac rehabilitation (CR) utilization data in a cohort of Medicare beneficiaries hospitalized for CR-eligible events in 2017, including stratification by select patient demographics and state of residence. METHODS: We identified Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries who experienced a CR-eligible event and assessed their CR participation (≥1 CR sessions in 365 d), engagement, and completion (≥36 sessions) rates through September 7, 2019. Measures were assessed overall, by beneficiary characteristics and state of residence, and by primary (myocardial infarction; coronary artery bypass surgery; heart valve repair/replacement; percutaneous coronary intervention; or heart/heart-lung transplant) and secondary (angina; heart failure) qualifying event type. RESULTS: In 2017, 412 080 Medicare beneficiaries had a primary CR-eligible event and 28.6% completed ≥1 session of CR within 365 d after discharge from a qualifying event. Among beneficiaries who completed ≥1 CR session, the mean total number of sessions was 25 ± 12 and 27.6% completed ≥36 sessions. Nebraska had the highest enrollment rate (56.1%), with four other states also achieving an enrollment rate >50% and 23 states falling below the overall rate for the United States. CONCLUSIONS: The absolute enrollment, engagement, and program completion rates remain low among Medicare beneficiaries, indicating that many patients did not benefit or fully benefit from a class I guideline-recommended therapy. Additional research and continued widespread adoption of successful enrollment and engagement initiatives are needed, especially among identified populations.

      4. Improving hypertension control and cardiovascular health: An urgent call to action for nursingexternal icon
        Hannan JA, Commodore-Mensah Y, Tokieda N, Smith AP, Gawlik KS, Murakami L, Cooper J, Koob S, Wright KD, Cassarino D, Arslanian-Engoren C, Melnyk BM.
        Worldviews Evid Based Nurs. 2022 Feb 8.
        BACKGROUND: Hypertension is a leading cause of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and affects nearly one in two adults in the United States when defined as a blood pressure of at least 130/80 mm Hg or on antihypertensive medication (Virani et al., 2021, Circulation, 143, e254). Long-standing disparities in hypertension awareness, treatment, and control among racial and ethnic populations exist in the United States. High-quality evidence exists for how to prevent and control hypertension and for the role nurses can play in this effort. In response to the 2020 Surgeon General's Call to Action to Control Hypertension, nursing leaders from 11 national organizations identified the critical roles and actions of nursing in improving hypertension control and cardiovascular health, focusing on evidence-based nursing interventions and available resources. AIMS: To develop a unified "Call to Action for Nurses" to improve control of hypertension and cardiovascular health and provide information and resources to execute this call. METHODS: This paper outlines roles that registered nurses, advanced practice nurses, schools of nursing, professional nursing organizations, quality improvement nurses, and nursing researchers can play to control hypertension and prevent CVD in the United States. It describes evidence-based interventions to improve cardiovascular health and outlines actions to bring hypertension and CVD to the forefront as a national priority for nursing. LINKING EVIDENCE TO ACTION: Evidence-based interventions exist for nurses to lead efforts to prevent and control hypertension, thus preventing much CVD. Nurses can take actions in their communities, their healthcare setting, and their organization to translate these interventions into real-world practice settings.

    • Communicable Diseases
      1. The shifting age distribution of people with HIV using antiretroviral therapy in the United Statesexternal icon
        Althoff KN, Stewart CN, Humes E, Zhang J, Gerace L, Boyd CM, Wong C, Justice AC, Gebo KA, Thorne JE, Rubtsova AA, Horberg MA, Silverberg MJ, Leng SX, Rebeiro PF, Moore RD, Buchacz K, Kasaie P.
        AIDS. 2022 Mar 1;36(3):459-471.
        OBJECTIVE: To project the future age distribution of people with HIV using antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the United States, under expected trends in HIV diagnosis and survival (baseline scenario) and achieving the ending the HIV epidemic (EHE) goals of a 75% reduction in HIV diagnoses from 2020 to 2025 and sustaining levels to 2030 (EHE75% scenario). DESIGN: An agent-based simulation model with mathematical functions estimated from North American AIDS Cohort Collaboration on Research and Design data and parameters from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's annual HIV surveillance reports. METHODS: The PEARL (ProjEcting Age, MultimoRbidity, and PoLypharmacy in adults with HIV) model simulated individuals in 15 subgroups of sex-and-HIV acquisition risk and race/ethnicity. Simulation outcomes from the baseline scenario are compared with outcomes from the EHE75% scenario. RESULTS: Under the baseline scenario, PEARL projects a substantial increase in number of ART-users over time, reaching a population of 909 638 [95% uncertainty range (UR): 878 449-946 513] by 2030. The overall median age increased from 50 years in 2020 to 52 years in 2030, with 23% of ART-users age ≥65 years in 2030. Under the EHE75% scenario, the projected number of ART-users was 718 348 [703 044-737 817] (median age = 56 years) in 2030, with a 70% relative reduction in ART-users <30 years and a 4% relative reduction in ART-users age ≥65 years compared to baseline, and persistent heterogeneities in projected numbers by sex-and-HIV acquisition risk group and race/ethnicity. CONCLUSIONS: It is critical to prepare healthcare systems to meet the impending demand of the US population aging with HIV.

      2. Studying the post-COVID-19 condition: research challenges, strategies, and importance of Core Outcome Set developmentexternal icon
        Munblit D, Nicholson TR, Needham DM, Seylanova N, Parr C, Chen J, Kokorina A, Sigfrid L, Buonsenso D, Bhatnagar S, Thiruvengadam R, Parker AM, Preller J, Avdeev S, Klok FA, Tong A, Diaz JV, Groote W, Schiess N, Akrami A, Simpson F, Olliaro P, Apfelbacher C, Rosa RG, Chevinsky JR, Saydah S, Schmitt J, Guekht A, Gorst SL, Genuneit J, Reyes LF, Asmanov A, O'Hara ME, Scott JT, Michelen M, Stavropoulou C, Warner JO, Herridge M, Williamson PR.
        BMC Med. 2022 Feb 4;20(1):50.
        BACKGROUND: A substantial portion of people with COVID-19 subsequently experience lasting symptoms including fatigue, shortness of breath, and neurological complaints such as cognitive dysfunction many months after acute infection. Emerging evidence suggests that this condition, commonly referred to as long COVID but also known as post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC) or post-COVID-19 condition, could become a significant global health burden. MAIN TEXT: While the number of studies investigating the post-COVID-19 condition is increasing, there is no agreement on how this new disease should be defined and diagnosed in clinical practice and what relevant outcomes to measure. There is an urgent need to optimise and standardise outcome measures for this important patient group both for clinical services and for research and to allow comparing and pooling of data. CONCLUSIONS: A Core Outcome Set for post-COVID-19 condition should be developed in the shortest time frame possible, for improvement in data quality, harmonisation, and comparability between different geographical locations. We call for a global initiative, involving all relevant partners, including, but not limited to, healthcare professionals, researchers, methodologists, patients, and caregivers. We urge coordinated actions aiming to develop a Core Outcome Set (COS) for post-COVID-19 condition in both the adult and paediatric populations.

      3. Outcomes of SARS-CoV-2-positive youths tested in emergency departments: The Global PERN-COVID-19 Studyexternal icon
        Funk AL, Florin TA, Kuppermann N, Tancredi DJ, Xie J, Kim K, Neuman MI, Ambroggio L, Plint AC, Mintegi S, Klassen TP, Salvadori MI, Malley R, Payne DC, Simon NJ, Yock-Corrales A, Nebhrajani JR, Chaudhari PP, Breslin KA, Finkelstein Y, Campos C, Bergmann KR, Bhatt M, Ahmad FA, Gardiner MA, Avva UR, Shah NP, Sartori LF, Sabhaney VJ, Caperell K, Navanandan N, Borland ML, Morris CR, Gangoiti I, Pavlicich V, Kannikeswaran N, Lunoe MM, Rino PB, Kam AJ, Cherry JC, Rogers AJ, Chong SL, Palumbo L, Angelats CM, Morrison AK, Kwok MY, Becker SM, Dixon AC, Poonai N, Eckerle M, Wassem M, Dalziel SR, Freedman SB.
        JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Jan 4;5(1):e2142322.
        IMPORTANCE: Severe outcomes among youths with SARS-CoV-2 infections are poorly characterized. OBJECTIVE: To estimate the proportion of children with severe outcomes within 14 days of testing positive for SARS-CoV-2 in an emergency department (ED). DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This prospective cohort study with 14-day follow-up enrolled participants between March 2020 and June 2021. Participants were youths aged younger than 18 years who were tested for SARS-CoV-2 infection at one of 41 EDs across 10 countries including Argentina, Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, Italy, New Zealand, Paraguay, Singapore, Spain, and the United States. Statistical analysis was performed from September to October 2021. EXPOSURES: Acute SARS-CoV-2 infection was determined by nucleic acid (eg, polymerase chain reaction) testing. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Severe outcomes, a composite measure defined as intensive interventions during hospitalization (eg, inotropic support, positive pressure ventilation), diagnoses indicating severe organ impairment, or death. RESULTS: Among 3222 enrolled youths who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection, 3221 (>99.9%) had index visit outcome data available, 2007 (62.3%) were from the United States, 1694 (52.6%) were male, and 484 (15.0%) had a self-reported chronic illness; the median (IQR) age was 3 (0-10) years. After 14 days of follow-up, 735 children (22.8% [95% CI, 21.4%-24.3%]) were hospitalized, 107 (3.3% [95% CI, 2.7%-4.0%]) had severe outcomes, and 4 children (0.12% [95% CI, 0.03%-0.32%]) died. Characteristics associated with severe outcomes included being aged 5 to 18 years (age 5 to <10 years vs <1 year: odds ratio [OR], 1.60 [95% CI, 1.09-2.34]; age 10 to <18 years vs <1 year: OR, 2.39 [95% CI 1.38-4.14]), having a self-reported chronic illness (OR, 2.34 [95% CI, 1.59-3.44]), prior episode of pneumonia (OR, 3.15 [95% CI, 1.83-5.42]), symptoms starting 4 to 7 days prior to seeking ED care (vs starting 0-3 days before seeking care: OR, 2.22 [95% CI, 1.29-3.82]), and country (eg, Canada vs US: OR, 0.11 [95% CI, 0.05-0.23]; Costa Rica vs US: OR, 1.76 [95% CI, 1.05-2.96]; Spain vs US: OR, 0.51 [95% CI, 0.27-0.98]). Among a subgroup of 2510 participants discharged home from the ED after initial testing and who had complete follow-up, 50 (2.0%; 95% CI, 1.5%-2.6%) were eventually hospitalized and 12 (0.5%; 95% CI, 0.3%-0.8%) had severe outcomes. Compared with hospitalized SARS-CoV-2-negative youths, the risk of severe outcomes was higher among hospitalized SARS-CoV-2-positive youths (risk difference, 3.9%; 95% CI, 1.1%-6.9%). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: In this study, approximately 3% of SARS-CoV-2-positive youths tested in EDs experienced severe outcomes within 2 weeks of their ED visit. Among children discharged home from the ED, the risk was much lower. Risk factors such as age, underlying chronic illness, and symptom duration may be useful to consider when making clinical care decisions.

      4. Prevalence of select new symptoms and conditions among persons aged younger than 20 years and 20 years or older at 31 to 150 days after testing positive or negative for SARS-cov-2external icon
        Hernandez-Romieu AC, Carton TW, Saydah S, Azziz-Baumgartner E, Boehmer TK, Garret NY, Bailey LC, Cowell LG, Draper C, Mayer KH, Nagavedu K, Puro JE, Rasmussen SA, Trick WE, Wanga V, Chevinsky JR, Jackson BR, Goodman AB, Cope JR, Gundlapalli AV, Block JP.
        JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Feb 1;5(2):e2147053.
        IMPORTANCE: New symptoms and conditions can develop following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Whether they occur more frequently among persons with SARS-CoV-2 infection compared with those without is unclear. OBJECTIVE: To compare the prevalence of new diagnoses of select symptoms and conditions between 31 and 150 days after testing among persons who tested positive vs negative for SARS-CoV-2. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: This cohort study analyzed aggregated electronic health record data from 40 health care systems, including 338 024 persons younger than 20 years and 1 790 886 persons aged 20 years or older who were tested for SARS-CoV-2 during March to December 2020 and who had medical encounters between 31 and 150 days after testing. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: International Statistical Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision, Clinical Modification codes were used to capture new symptoms and conditions that were recorded 31 to 150 days after a SARS-CoV-2 test but absent in the 18 months to 7 days prior to testing. The prevalence of new symptoms and conditions was compared between persons with positive and negative SARS-CoV-2 tests stratified by age (20 years or older and young than 20 years) and care setting (nonhospitalized, hospitalized, or hospitalized and ventilated). RESULTS: A total of 168 701 persons aged 20 years or older and 26 665 younger than 20 years tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, and 1 622 185 persons aged 20 years or older and 311 359 younger than 20 years tested negative. Shortness of breath was more common among persons with a positive vs negative test result among hospitalized patients (≥20 years: prevalence ratio [PR], 1.89 [99% CI, 1.79-2.01]; <20 years: PR, 1.72 [99% CI, 1.17-2.51]). Shortness of breath was also more common among nonhospitalized patients aged 20 years or older with a positive vs negative test result (PR, 1.09 [99% CI, 1.05-1.13]). Among hospitalized persons aged 20 years or older, the prevalence of new fatigue (PR, 1.35 [99% CI, 1.27-1.44]) and type 2 diabetes (PR, 2.03 [99% CI, 1.87-2.19]) was higher among those with a positive vs a negative test result. Among hospitalized persons younger than 20 years, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes (PR, 2.14 [99% CI, 1.13-4.06]) was higher among those with a positive vs a negative test result; however, the prevalence difference was less than 1%. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: In this cohort study, among persons hospitalized after a positive SARS-CoV-2 test result, diagnoses of certain symptoms and conditions were higher than among those with a negative test result. Health care professionals should be aware of symptoms and conditions that may develop after SARS-CoV-2 infection, particularly among those hospitalized after diagnosis.

      5. BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Findings of association between COVID-19 and stroke remain inconsistent, ranging from significant association, absence of association to less than expected ischemic stroke among hospitalized patients with COVID-19. The present study examined the association between COVID-19 and risk of acute ischemic stroke (AIS). METHODS: We included 37,379 Medicare fee-for-service (FFS) beneficiaries aged ≥65 years diagnosed with COVID-19 from April 1, 2020 through February 28, 2021 and AIS hospitalization from January 1, 2019 through February 28, 2021. We used a self-controlled case series design to examine the association between COVID-19 and AIS and estimated the incident rate ratios (IRR) by comparing incidence of AIS in risk periods (0-3, 4-7, 8-14, 15-28 days after diagnosis of COVID-19) vs. control periods. RESULTS: Among 37,379 Medicare FFS beneficiaries with COVID-19 and AIS, the median age at diagnosis of COVID-19 was 80.4 (interquartile range 73.5-87.1) years and 56.7% were women. When AIS at day of exposure (day=0) included in the risk periods, IRRs at 0-3, 4-7, 8-14, and 15-28 days following COVID-19 diagnosis were 10.3 (95% confidence interval 9.86-10.8), 1.61 (1.44-1.80), 1.44 (1.32-1.57), and 1.09 (1.02-1.18); when AIS at day 0 excluded in the risk periods, the corresponding IRRs were 1.77 (1.57-2.01) (day 1-3), 1.60 (1.43-1.79), 1.43 (1.31-1.56), and 1.09 (1.01-1.17), respectively. The association appeared to be stronger among younger beneficiaries and among beneficiaries without prior history of stroke but largely consistent across sex and race/ethnicities. DISCUSSION: Risk of AIS among Medicare FFS beneficiaries was ten times (day 0 cases in the risk period) as high during the first 3 days after diagnosis of COVID-19 as during the control period and the risk associated with COVID-19 appeared to be stronger among those aged 65-74 years and those without prior history of stroke. CLASSIFICATION OF EVIDENCE: This study provides Class IV evidence that SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus that causes COVID-19, is associated with increased risk of AIS in the first three days after diagnosis in Medicare FFS beneficiaries ≥ 65 years age.

    • Community Health Services
      1. Feasibility and effectiveness of HCV viraemia testing at harm reduction sites in Georgia: a prospective three-arm studyexternal icon
        Shilton S, Markby J, Japaridze M, Chihota V, Shadaker S, Gvinjilia L, Tsereteli M, Alkhazashvili M, Butsashvili M, Stvilia K, Ruiz RJ, Asatiani A, Adamia E, Easterbrook P, Khonelidze I, Gamkrelidze A.
        Liver Int. 2022 Feb 7.
        BACKGROUND AND AIMS: In 2015, Georgia began a hepatitis C virus (HCV) elimination programme. Although screening programmes have been decentralised for high-risk groups, viraemic testing remains a bottleneck for people who inject drugs. Here, we describe two models of viraemic testing that aimed to address this gap. METHODS: We assigned eight harm reduction sites (HRS) to one of three arms (2:1:1): Xpert HCV viral load testing on-site, blood draw on-site with centralised HCV core antigen testing (HCVcAg), or standard-of-care (SOC) referral with viremia testing performed at treatment centres. RESULTS: 1671 HCV-seropositive participants were enrolled (Xpert, 37·1%; HCVcAg, 29·1%; referral, 33·8%). Participants were predominantly male (95·4%), mean age (IQR) 43 (37, 50) years, and 1290 (77·2%) were currently injecting drugs. Significantly higher proportions of participants in the Xpert (100%) and HCVcAg (99·8%) arms received viraemia testing compared with the referral arm (91·3%) (Xpert vs referral, p<0·0001; HCVcAg vs referral, p<0·0001). Among viraemic participants, treatment uptake was similar (Xpert, 84·0%; HCVcAg, 79·5%; referral, 88·4%). The time between screening and sample collection for viraemia testing was significantly longer in the referral arm compared with both Xpert and HCVcAg arms (median 1 day compared with 0 days, respectively), and the overall time between screening to treatment initiation was longer for the referral arm (median 67 days) compared with both Xpert and HCVcAg arms (median 57 and 50 days, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Point-of-care viraemia testing and blood drawn on-site for HCVcAg testing yielded more HCV-seropositive patients receiving viraemic testing within a shorter timeframe compared with referrals.

      2. Expansion of preexposure prophylaxis capacity in response to an HIV outbreak among people who inject drugs-Cabell County, West Virginia, 2019external icon
        Furukawa NW, Weimer M, Willenburg KS, Kilkenny ME, Atkins AD, McClung RP, Hansen Z, Napier K, Handanagic S, Carnes NA, Kemp Rinderle J, Neblett-Fanfair R, Oster AM, Smith DK.
        Public Health Rep. 2022 Jan-Feb;137(1):25-31.
        From January 1, 2018, through October 9, 2019, 82 HIV diagnoses occurred among people who inject drugs (PWID) in Cabell County, West Virginia. Increasing the use of HIV preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) among PWID was one of the goals of a joint federal, state, and local response to this HIV outbreak. Through partnerships with the local health department, a federally qualified health center, and an academic medical system, we integrated PrEP into medication-assisted treatment, syringe services program, and primary health care settings. During the initial PrEP implementation period (April 18-May 17, 2019), 110 health care providers and administrators received PrEP training, the number of clinics offering PrEP increased from 2 to 15, and PrEP referrals were integrated with partner services, outreach, and testing activities. The number of people on PrEP increased from 15 in the 6 months before PrEP expansion to 127 in the 6 months after PrEP implementation. Lessons learned included the importance of implementing PrEP within existing health care services, integrating PrEP with other HIV prevention response activities, adapting training and material to fit the local context, and customizing care to meet the needs of PWID. The delivery of PrEP to PWID is challenging but complements other HIV prevention interventions. The expansion of PrEP in response to this HIV outbreak in Cabell County provides a framework for expanding PrEP in other outbreak and non-outbreak settings.

    • Disease Reservoirs and Vectors
      1. Cemeteries as sources of Aedes aegypti and other mosquito species in southeastern Puerto Ricoexternal icon
        Otero LM, Medina-Martinez G, Sepúlveda M, Acevedo V, Toro M, Barrera R.
        Trop Med Int Health. 2022 Feb 3.
        OBJECTIVE: To investigate the presence and abundance of mosquito species in containers found in different types of cemeteries in Puerto Rico to assess their importance and make control recommendations. METHODS: We conducted surveys of containers with water in 16 cemeteries in southeastern Puerto Rico to: detect the presence of larvae and pupae of Aedes aegypti and other mosquitoes; identify the most common and productive containers and study their variation in relation to the type of cemetery. RESULTS: The most common containers with water were flowerpots, followed in abundance by a variety of discarded containers and open tombs. We found a positive relationship between density of containers with water and rainfall. There was a rich community of mosquito species developing in containers of the inspected cemeteries: nine mosquito species belonging to four genera with Ae. aegypti and Ae. mediovittatus being the most frequent and abundant. We sampled 13 cement type cemeteries, 2 mixed, and only 1 lawn cemetery, consequently we could not draw any conclusion regarding container productivity and cemetery type. CONCLUSIONS: Surveyed cemeteries were important sources of Ae. aegypti and other mosquitoes in flowerpots, discarded containers, and open tombs. We recommend conducting further studies to establish how frequently inspections should occur; and mosquito control by emptying aquatic habitats and larviciding to reduce mosquito productivity and protect workers and visitors from mosquito bites and possible transmission of arboviruses.

    • Environmental Health
      1. U.S. public health response to climate change, for allergists-immunologistsexternal icon
        Gillespie E, Schramm PJ, Hsu J.
        Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2022 Feb 6.

    • Epidemiology and Surveillance
      1. Primary case inference in viral outbreaks through analysis of intra-host variant populationexternal icon
        Gussler JW, Campo DS, Dimitrova Z, Skums P, Khudyakov Y.
        BMC Bioinformatics. 2022 Feb 8;23(1):62.
        BACKGROUND: Investigation of outbreaks to identify the primary case is crucial for the interruption and prevention of transmission of infectious diseases. These individuals may have a higher risk of participating in near future transmission events when compared to the other patients in the outbreak, so directing more transmission prevention resources towards these individuals is a priority. Although the genetic characterization of intra-host viral populations can aid the identification of transmission clusters, it is not trivial to determine the directionality of transmissions during outbreaks, owing to complexity of viral evolution. Here, we present a new computational framework, PYCIVO: primary case inference in viral outbreaks. This framework expands upon our earlier work in development of QUENTIN, which builds a probabilistic disease transmission tree based on simulation of evolution of intra-host hepatitis C virus (HCV) variants between cases involved in direct transmission during an outbreak. PYCIVO improves upon QUENTIN by also adding a custom heterogeneity index and identifying the scenario when the primary case may have not been sampled. RESULTS: These approaches were validated using a set of 105 sequence samples from 11 distinct HCV transmission clusters identified during outbreak investigations, in which the primary case was epidemiologically verified. Both models can detect the correct primary case in 9 out of 11 transmission clusters (81.8%). However, while QUENTIN issues erroneous predictions on the remaining 2 transmission clusters, PYCIVO issues a null output for these clusters, giving it an effective prediction accuracy of 100%. To further evaluate accuracy of the inference, we created 10 modified transmission clusters in which the primary case had been removed. In this scenario, PYCIVO was able to correctly identify that there was no primary case in 8/10 (80%) of these modified clusters. This model was validated with HCV; however, this approach may be applicable to other microbial pathogens. CONCLUSIONS: PYCIVO improves upon QUENTIN by also implementing a custom heterogeneity index which empowers PYCIVO to make the important 'No primary case' prediction. One or more samples, possibly including the primary case, may have not been sampled, and this designation is meant to account for these scenarios.

      2. Evidence-informed milestones for developmental surveillance toolsexternal icon
        Zubler JM, Wiggins LD, Macias MM, Whitaker TM, Shaw JS, Squires JK, Pajek JA, Wolf RB, Slaughter KS, Broughton AS, Gerndt KL, Mlodoch BJ, Lipkin PH.
        Pediatrics. 2022 Feb 8.
        The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Learn the Signs. Act Early. program, funded the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to convene an expert working group to revise its developmental surveillance checklists. The goals of the group were to identify evidence-informed milestones to include in CDC checklists, clarify when most children can be expected to reach a milestone (to discourage a wait-and-see approach), and support clinical judgment regarding screening between recommended ages. Subject matter experts identified by the AAP established 11 criteria for CDC milestone checklists, including using milestones most children (≥75%) would be expected to achieve by specific health supervision visit ages and those that are easily observed in natural settings. A database of normative data for individual milestones, common screening and evaluation tools, and published clinical opinion was created to inform revisions. Application of the criteria established by the AAP working group and adding milestones for the 15- and 30-month health supervision visits resulted in a 26.4% reduction and 40.9% replacement of previous CDC milestones. One third of the retained milestones were transferred to different ages; 67.7% of those transferred were moved to older ages. Approximately 80% of the final milestones had normative data from ≥1 sources. Social-emotional and cognitive milestones had the least normative data. These criteria and revised checklists can be used to support developmental surveillance, clinical judgment regarding additional developmental screening, and research in developmental surveillance processes. Gaps in developmental data were identified particularly for social-emotional and cognitive milestones.

      3. INTRODUCTION: Pediatric tuberculosis (TB) cases are sentinel events for Mycobacterium tuberculosis transmission in communities because children, by definition, must have been infected relatively recently. However, these events are not consistently identified by genotype-dependent surveillance alerting methods because many pediatric TB cases are not culture-positive, a prerequisite for genotyping. METHODS: We developed 3 potential indicators of ongoing TB transmission based on identifying counties in the United States with relatively high pediatric (aged <15 years) TB incidence: (1) a case proportion indicator: an above-average proportion of pediatric TB cases among all TB cases; (2) a case rate indicator: an above-average pediatric TB case rate; and (3) a statistical model indicator: a statistical model based on a significant increase in pediatric TB cases from the previous 8-quarter moving average. RESULTS: Of the 249 US counties reporting ≥2 pediatric TB cases during 2009-2017, 240 and 249 counties were identified by the case proportion and case rate indicators, respectively. The statistical model indicator identified 40 counties with a significant increase in the number of pediatric TB cases. We compared results from the 3 indicators with an independently generated list of 91 likely transmission events involving ≥2 pediatric cases (ie, known TB outbreaks or case clusters with reported epidemiologic links). All counties with likely transmission events involving multiple pediatric cases were identified by ≥1 indicator; 23 were identified by all 3 indicators. PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS: This retrospective analysis demonstrates the feasibility of using routine TB surveillance data to identify counties where ongoing TB transmission might be occurring, even in the absence of available genotyping data.

      4. Schistosomiasis is a neglected tropical disease (NTD) found throughout tropical and sub-tropical Africa. In Madagascar, the condition is widespread and endemic in 74% of all administrative districts in the country. Despite the significant burden of the disease, high-resolution risk maps have yet to be produced to guide national control programs. This study used an ecological niche modeling (ENM) and precision mapping approach to estimate environmental suitability and disease transmission risk. The results show that suitability for schistosomiasis is widespread and covers 264,781 km2 (102,232 sq miles). Covariates of significance to the model were the accessibility to cities, distance to water, enhanced vegetation index (EVI), annual mean temperature, land surface temperature (LST), clay content, and annual precipitation. Disease transmission risk is greatest in the central highlands, tropical east coast, arid-southwest, and northwest. An estimated 14.9 million people could be at risk of schistosomiasis; 11.4 million reside in rural areas, while 3.5 million are in urban areas. This study provides valuable insight into the geography of schistosomiasis in Madagascar and its potential risk to human populations. Because of the focal nature of the disease, these maps can inform national surveillance programs while improving understanding of areas in need of medical interventions. © 2022 by the author. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

    • Food Safety
      1. Multistate outbreak investigation of salmonella infections linked to kratom: A focus on traceback, laboratory, and regulatory activitiesexternal icon
        Nsubuga J, Baugher J, Dahl E, Schwensohn C, Blessington T, Aguillon R, Whitney B, Goldman S, Brewster M, Humbert J, Crosby A, Gieraltowski L, Shade Singleton L, Hilgendorf J.
        J Food Prot. 2022 Feb 3.
        During the spring of 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), states and local public health agencies responded to a multistate outbreak of gastrointestinal illnesses caused by multiple   Salmonella   serovars and associated with consumption of kratom, a product harvested from a tropical tree native to Southeast Asia. The outbreak included 199 case-patients reported by 41 U.S. states, with illness onset dates ranging from January 11, 2017 to May 8, 2018, leading to 54 hospitalizations, and no deaths. Case-patients reported purchasing kratom products from physical and online retail points of service (POS). Products distributed to 16 POS where 24 case-patients from 17 states purchased kratom were selected for traceback investigation. Traceback revealed that the kratom was imported from several countries, the most common being Indonesia. Local and state officials collected product samples from case-patients and retail POS. The FDA collected 76 product samples from POS and distributors, of which 42 (55%) tested positive for   Salmonella  . The positive samples exhibited a wide range of pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) patterns and whole genome sequence (WGS) genetic heterogeneity, and a total 25 of 42 (60%) yielded at least one isolate indistinguishable from one or more outbreak-related clinical isolates. While it does not exclude a possibility of a single contamination source, the extent of genetic diversity exhibited by the   Salmonella   isolates recovered from product samples and a lack of traceback convergence, suggested that kratom was widely contaminated across multiple sites from which it was grown, harvested, and packaged. As a result of the contamination, kratom products were recalled by numerous firms (both voluntarily and mandatory). Epidemiologic, traceback, and laboratory evidence supported the conclusion that kratom products were associated with illnesses.

    • Genetics and Genomics
      1. Detection and population genetic analysis of kdr L1014F variant in eastern Ethiopian Anopheles stephensiexternal icon
        Samake JN, Yared S, Getachew D, Mumba P, Dengela D, Yohannes G, Chibsa S, Choi SH, Spear J, Irish SR, Zohdy S, Balkew M, Carter TE.
        Infect Genet Evol. 2022 Feb 2:105235.
        Anopheles stephensi is a malaria vector that has been recently introduced into East Africa, where it threatens to increase malaria disease burden. The use of insecticides, especially pyrethroids, is still one of the primary malaria vector control strategies worldwide. The knockdown resistance (kdr) mutation in the IIS6 transmembrane segment of the voltage-gated sodium channel (vgsc) is one of the main molecular mechanisms of pyrethroid resistance in Anopheles. Extensive pyrethroid resistance in An. stephensi has been previously reported in Ethiopia. Thus, it is important to determine whether or not the kdr mutation is present in An. stephensi populations in Ethiopia to inform vector control strategies. In the present study, the kdr locus was analyzed in An. stephensi collected from ten urban sites (Awash Sebat Kilo, Bati, Dire Dawa, Degehabur, Erer Gota, Godey, Gewane, Jigjiga, Semera, and Kebridehar) situated in Somali, Afar, and Amhara regions, and Dire Dawa Administrative City, to evaluate the frequency and evolution of kdr mutations and the association of the mutation with permethrin resistance phenotypes. Permethrin is one of the pyrethroid insecticides used for vector control in eastern Ethiopia. DNA extractions were performed on adult mosquitoes from CDC light trap collections and those raised from larval and pupal collections. PCR and targeted sequencing were used to analyze the IIS6 transmembrane segment of the vgsc gene. Of 159 An. stephensi specimens analyzed from the population survey, nine (5.7%) carried the kdr mutation (L1014F). An. stephensi with kdr mutations were only observed from Bati, Degehabur, Dire Dawa, Gewane, and Semera. We further randomly selected twenty resistant and twenty susceptible An. stephensi mosquitoes from Dire Dawa post-exposure to permethrin and investigated the role of kdr in pyrethroid resistance by comparing the vgsc gene in the two populations. We found no kdr mutations in the permethrin-resistant mosquitoes. Population genetic analysis of the sequences, including neighboring introns, revealed limited evidence of non-neutral evolution (e.g., selection) at this locus. The low kdr mutation frequency detected and the lack of kdr mutation in the permethrin-resistant mosquitoes suggest the existence of other molecular mechanisms of pyrethroid resistance in eastern Ethiopian An. stephensi.

      2. Genomics and newborn screening: Perspectives of public health programsexternal icon
        Goldenberg AJ, Ponsaran R, Gaviglio A, Simancek D, Tarini BA.
        International Journal of Neonatal Screening. 2022 ;8(1).
        This study assesses the benefits and challenges of using genomics in Newborn Screening Programs (NBS) from the perspectives of State program officials. This project aims to help programs develop policies that will aid in the integration of genomic technology. Discussion groups were conducted with the NBS Program and Laboratory Directors in the seven HRSA Regional Genomics Collaboratives (August 2014–March 2016). The discussion groups addressed expected uses of genomics, potential benefits, and challenges of integrating genomic technology, and educational needs for parents and other NBS stakeholders: Twelve focus groups were conducted, which included participants from over 40 state programs. Benefits of incorporating genomics included improving screening modalities, supporting diagnostic procedures, and screening for a wider spectrum of disorders. Challenges included the costs of genomics, the ability to educate parents and health care providers about results, and the potential negative psychosocial impact of genomic information. Attempts to address the challenges of integrating genomics must focus on preserving the child welfare goals of NBS programs. Health departments will need to explore how genomics could be used to enhance programs while maintaining universal access to screening. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

      3. Genomic diversity of haemophilus influenzae serotype a in an outbreak community-Alaska, 2018external icon
        Nolen LD, DeByle C, Topaz N, Simons BC, Tiffany A, Reasonover A, Castrodale L, McLaughlin J, Klejka J, Wang X, Bruce M.
        J Infect Dis. 2022 Feb 1;225(3):520-524.
        BACKGROUND: Haemophilus influenzae serotype a (Hia) can cause severe invasive disease, especially in young children. In 2018, 4 invasive Hia cases occurred in an Alaska community. We used whole-genome sequencing (WGS) to evaluate the relationship of the bacteria from this community and other Alaska patients with invasive Hia. METHODS: All carriage (n = 15) and invasive (n = 4) Hia isolates from the outbreak community, together with 15 nonoutbreak Alaska invasive Hia surveillance isolates from 2018, were tested for antimicrobial susceptibility and characterized using WGS. RESULTS: Phylogenetic analysis of both invasive and carriage Hia isolates revealed 2 major clades that differed by an average of 300 core single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). All isolates from the outbreak community were clustered in 1 subclade, within a larger clade containing 3 nonoutbreak invasive Hia isolates. Comparative genomics did not reveal any genetic mutations that distinguished carriage from invasive isolates. Three (20%) community isolates were rifampin resistant and had a previously unreported mutation in the rpoB gene. CONCLUSIONS: In the outbreak community, Hia isolates from carriers were indistinguishable from the invasive Hia isolates. Overall, invasive Hia isolates from Alaska in 2018 were genetically similar. The rifampin resistance mutation is concerning as rifampin is the first-line medication for Hia prophylaxis.

      4. CYP2C8, CYP2C9 and CYP2C19 characterization using Next Generation Sequencing and Haplotype Analysis: A GeT-RM Collaborative Projectexternal icon
        Gaedigk A, Boone EC, Scherer SE, Lee SB, Numanagić I, Sahinalp C, Smith JD, McGee S, Radhakrishnan A, Qin X, Wang WY, Farrow EG, Gonzaludo N, Halpern AL, Nickerson DA, Miller NA, Pratt VM, Kalman LV.
        J Mol Diagn. 2022 Feb 5.
        Pharmacogenetic tests typically target selected sequence variants to identify haplotypes that are often defined by star (*) allele nomenclature. Due to their design, these targeted genotyping assays are unable to detect novel variants that may change the function of the gene product and thereby affect phenotype prediction and patient care. In the current study, 137 DNA samples that were previously characterized by the Genetic Testing Reference Material (GeT-RM) Program using a variety of targeted genotyping methods were recharacterized using targeted and whole genome sequencing analysis. Sequence data were analyzed using three genotype calling tools to identify star allele diplotypes for CYP2C8, CYP2C9 and CYP2C19. The genotype calls from next-generation sequencing (NGS) correlated well to those previously reported, except when novel alleles were present in a sample. Six novel alleles and 38 novel suballeles were identified in the three genes due to identification of variants not covered by targeted genotyping assays. In addition, several ambiguous genotype calls from a previous study were resolved using the NGS and/or long read NGS data. Diplotype calls were mostly consistent between the calling algorithms, although several discrepancies were noted. This study highlights the utility of NGS for pharmacogenetic testing and demonstrates that there are many novel alleles that are yet to be discovered, even in highly characterized genes such as CYP2C9 and CYP2C19.

    • Global Health
      1. OBJECTIVE: To assess outcomes from the U.S. post-arrival evaluation of newly arrived immigrant and refugee children aged 2-14 years who were diagnosed with latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) during a required overseas medical examination. STUDY DESIGN: We compared overseas and U.S. interferon-γ release assay (IGRA)/tuberculin skin test (TST) results and LTBI diagnosis; assessed post-arrival LTBI treatment initiation and completion; and evaluated the impact of switching from TST to IGRA to detect Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb) infection overseas. RESULTS: 73,014 children were diagnosed with LTBI overseas and arrived in the United States during 2007‒2019. In the United States, 45,939 (62.9%) completed, and 1,985 (2.7%) initiated but did not complete a post-arrival evaluation. Among these 47,924 children, 30,360 (63.4%) were retested for Mtb infection. For 17,996 children with a positive overseas TST, 73.8% were negative when retested by IGRA. For 1,051 children with a positive overseas IGRA, 58.0% were negative when retested by IGRA. Overall, among children who completed a post-arrival evaluation, 18,544 (40.4%) were evaluated as having no evidence of TB infection, and 25,919 (56.4%) had their overseas LTBI diagnosis confirmed. Among the latter, 17,229 (66.5%) initiated and 9,185 (35.4%) completed LTBI treatment. CONCLUSIONS: Requiring IGRA testing overseas could more effectively identify children who will benefit from LTBI treatment. However, IGRA reversions may occur, highlighting the need for individualized assessment for risk of infection, progression, and poor outcome when making diagnostic and treatment decisions. Strategies are needed to increase the proportions receiving a post-arrival evaluation and completing LTBI treatment.

      2. Acute hepatitis A in international travelers: A GeoSentinel analysis, 2008-2020external icon
        Balogun O, Brown A, Angelo D, Hochberg NS, Barnett ED, Nicolini LA, Asgeirsson H, Grobusch MP, Leder K, Salvador F, Chen L, Odolini S, Díaz-Menéndez M, Gobbi F, Connor BA, Libman M, Hamer DH.
        J Travel Med. 2022 Feb 3.
        BACKGROUND: Non-immune international travelers are at risk of acquiring hepatitis A. Although hepatitis A vaccination is recommended for unvaccinated travelers to high or intermediate hepatitis A virus endemicity, compliance with this recommendation is not universal. OBJECTIVE: To describe the demographic and travel characteristics of international travelers infected with hepatitis A during travel. METHODS: Available data on travelers with confirmed (positive molecular test) or probable (symptomatic individuals with a single positive IgM test) hepatitis A diagnosed during and after travel from January 2008 to December 2020 were obtained from the GeoSentinel Surveillance Network database. We analyzed demographic and travel characteristics of infected travelers. RESULTS: Among 254 travelers with hepatitis A (185 confirmed and 69 probable), the median age was 28 years (interquartile range: 19-40), 150 (59%) were male, and among 54 travelers with information available, 53 (98%) were unvaccinated. The most common reasons for travel included tourism (n = 120; 47%) and visiting friends or relatives (VFR) (n = 72; 28%). About two-thirds of VFR travelers with hepatitis A (n = 50; 69%) were younger than 20 years old. Hepatitis A was acquired most frequently in South-Central Asia (n = 63; 25%) and sub-Saharan Africa (n = 61; 24%), but 16 travelers (6%) acquired hepatitis A in regions with low endemicity including Western Europe (n = 7; 3%), the Caribbean (n = 6; 2%), and North America (n = 3; 1%). Median duration from illness onset to GeoSentinel site presentation was approximately 7 days (IQR: 4-14 days). Among 88 travelers with information available, 59% were hospitalized. CONCLUSION: Despite availability of highly effective vaccines, travelers still acquire hepatitis A, even when traveling to low-endemicity destinations. Providing pre-departure hepatitis A vaccine to susceptible travelers is crucial to reducing travel-associated hepatitis A and should be offered to all travelers as part of the pre-travel consultation, regardless of destination.

    • Health Behavior and Risk
      1. Decisions to attend holiday gatherings during COVID-19 and engagement in key prevention strategies - United States, January 2021external icon
        Pomeroy MA, Hoover ER, Dumas BL, Kennedy KS, Wittry B, Laughlin ME, Harris DM, Gieraltowski L, Yellman MA, Garcia-Williams AG, Marshall KE.
        Epidemiol Infect. 2022 Feb 9:1-29.

    • Health Communication and Education
      1. The aim of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP) is to make an evidence-based lifestyle change program widely available to the more than 88 million American adults at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The National DPP allows for program delivery using four delivery modes: in person, online, distance learning, and combination. The objective of this study was to analyze cumulative enrollment in the National DPP by delivery mode. We included all participants who enrolled in CDC-recognized organizations delivering the lifestyle change program between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2019, and whose data were submitted to CDC's Diabetes Prevention Recognition Program. During this time, the number of participants who enrolled was 455,954. Enrollment, by delivery mode, was 166,691 for in-person; 269,004 for online; 4,786 for distance-learning; and 15,473 for combination. In-person organizations enrolled the lowest proportion of men (19.4%) and the highest proportions of non-Hispanic Black/African American (16.1%) and older (65+ years) participants (28.2%). Online organizations enrolled the highest proportions of men (27.1%), younger (18-44 years) participants (41.5%), and non-Hispanic White participants (70.3%). Distance-learning organizations enrolled the lowest proportion of Hispanic/Latino participants (9.0%). Combination organizations enrolled the highest proportions of Hispanic/Latino participants (37.3%) and participants who had obesity (84.1%). Most in-person participants enrolled in organizations classified as community-centered entities (41.4%) or medical providers (31.2%). Online and distance-learning participants were primarily enrolled (93.3% and 70.2%, respectively) in organizations classified as for-profit businesses or insurers. Participants in combination programs were enrolled almost exclusively in organizations classified as medical providers (89%). The National DPP has reached nearly half a million participants since its inception in 2012, but continued expansion is critical to stem the tide of type 2 diabetes among the many Americans at high risk.

      2. The CDC's Division of Adolescent and School Health approach to sexual health education in schools: 3 decades in reviewexternal icon
        Szucs LE, Barrios LC, Young E, Robin L, Hunt P, Jayne PE.
        J Sch Health. 2022 Feb;92(2):223-234.
        BACKGROUND: School health education, including sexual health education, plays a crucial role in shaping adolescents' protective health behaviors, experiences, and outcomes. Adolescents need functional knowledge and skills to practice, adopt, and maintain healthy behaviors for preventing sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and unintended pregnancy. METHODS: The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Division of Adolescent and School Health (CDC/DASH) has advanced school-based approaches to STI/HIV and pregnancy prevention through surveillance, research and evaluation, and program partnership and collaboration for over 3 decades. RESULTS: CDC/DASH uses systematic and innovative strategies to identify the breadth of adolescent sexual health evidence; characterize key elements of effective educational curricula; and provide practical guidance to support school-based delivery. CDC/DASH's approach to effective health and sexual health education in schools has changed dramatically over the past 30 years and must continue to progress. CONCLUSION: This paper describes how and why that approach has evolved and outlines directions for the future.

    • Health Economics
      1. Data-related challenges in cost-effectiveness analyses of vaccinesexternal icon
        Pike J, Leidner AJ, Chesson H, Stoecker C, Grosse SD.
        Appl Health Econ Health Policy. 2022 Feb 9.
        Cost-effectiveness analyses (CEAs) are often prepared to quantify the expected economic value of potential vaccination strategies. Estimated outcomes and costs of vaccination strategies depend on numerous data inputs or assumptions, including estimates of vaccine efficacy and disease incidence in the absence of vaccination. Limitations in epidemiologic data can meaningfully affect both CEA estimates and the interpretation of those results by groups involved in vaccination policy decisions. Developers of CEAs should be transparent with regard to the ambiguity and uncertainty associated with epidemiologic information that is incorporated into their models. We describe selected data-related challenges to conducting CEAs for vaccination strategies, including generalizability of estimates of vaccine effectiveness, duration and functional form of vaccine protection that can change over time, indirect (herd) protection, and serotype replacement. We illustrate how CEA estimates can be sensitive to variations in specific epidemiologic assumptions, with examples from CEAs conducted for the USA that assessed vaccinations against human papillomavirus and pneumococcal disease. These challenges are certainly not limited to these two case studies and may be relevant to other vaccines.

      2. The impact of a state-based workers' compensation insurer's risk control services on employer claim frequency and cost ratesexternal icon
        Wurzelbacher SJ, Bertke SJ, Lampl MP, Bushnell PT, Robins DC, Naber SJ, Moore LL.
        J Occup Environ Med. 2022 Feb 1.
        OBJECTIVE: This study evaluated the impact of a state workers' compensation (WC) insurer's onsite risk control (RC) services on insured employers' WC claim frequency and cost. METHODS: We used two methods to model 2004-2017 claims data from 4,606 employers that received RC visits over time and compare this claims experience to matching employers that did not receive RC services. RESULTS: Relative total WC claim rates increased slightly after RC services, while relative lost-time claims rates either remained similar or decreased and WC cost rates decreased. The impact of RC services on reducing WC costs was cumulative up to the fourth visit but diminished thereafter. CONCLUSIONS: The insurer RC consultation program was effective in reducing WC cost rates for serviced employers. This is consistent with other research conducted on insurer RC services and related regulatory visits.

      3. A literature review of peer-reviewed articles published 2000-2019 was conducted to determine the types and extent of hypertension-associated productivity loss among adults in the United States. All monetary outcomes were standardized to 2019 $ by using the Employment Cost Index. Twenty-seven articles met the inclusion criteria. Nearly half of the articles (12 articles) presented monetary outcomes of productivity loss. Absenteeism (14 articles) and presenteeism (8 articles) were most frequently assessed. Annual absenteeism was estimated to cost more than $11 billion, nationally controlling for sociodemographic characteristics. The annual additional costs per person were estimated at $63 for short-term disability, $72-$330 for absenteeism, and $53-$156 for presenteeism, controlling for participant characteristics; and may be as high as $2362 for absenteeism and presenteeism when considered in combination. The annual additional time loss per person was estimated as 1.3 days for absenteeism, controlling for common hypertension comorbidities, including stroke and diabetes; and 15.6 days for work and home productivity loss combined, controlling for sociodemographic characteristics. The loss from absenteeism alone might be more than 20% of the total medical expenditure of hypertension. Although the differences in estimation methods and study populations make it challenging to synthesize the costs across the studies, this review provides detailed information on the various types of productivity loss. In addition, the ways in which methods could be standardized for future research are discussed. Accounting for the costs from productivity loss can help public health officials, health insurers, employers, and researchers better understand the economic burden of hypertension.

    • Health Equity and Health Disparities
      1. HIV stigma among a national probability sample of adults with diagnosed HIV-United States, 2018-2019external icon
        Beer L, Tie Y, McCree DH, Demeke HB, Marcus R, Padilla M, Khalil G, Shouse RL.
        AIDS Behav. 2022 Jan;26(Suppl 1):39-50.
        HIV stigma is a barrier to achieving the goals of the US Ending the HIV Epidemic initiative. We analyzed data from the Medical Monitoring Project (MMP) collected during 6/2018-5/2019 from 4050 US adults with diagnosed HIV. We reported national estimates of HIV stigma and assessed their associations with sociodemographic and clinical characteristics. Disclosure concerns and stigma related to negative public attitudes were common. Stigma was higher among younger age groups, women and transgender people, Black and Hispanic/Latino men and women, and Black and Hispanic/Latino men who have sex with men. Stigma was associated with lower antiretroviral therapy use and adherence, missed HIV care visits, and symptoms of depression or anxiety. The estimates presented provide a benchmark from which the nation can monitor its progress. The findings suggest the need for enhanced stigma-reduction efforts among specific groups and the importance of addressing stigma around disclosure and community attitudes.

      2. Promoting health equity during the COVID-19 pandemic, United Statesexternal icon
        Moore JT, Luna-Pinto C, Cox H, Razi S, St Louis ME, Ricaldi JN, Liburd L.
        Bull World Health Organ. 2022 Feb 1;100(2):171-173.

      3. Cancer disparities among non-Hispanic urban American Indian and Alaska Native populations in the United States, 1999-2017external icon
        Melkonian SC, Jim MA, Pete D, Poel A, Dominguez AE, Echo-Hawk A, Zhang S, Wilson RJ, Haverkamp D, Petras L, Pohlenz A.
        Cancer. 2022 Feb 4.
        BACKGROUND: Disparities in cancer incidence have not been described for urban American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations. The purpose of the present study was to examine incidence rates (2008-2017) and trends (1999-2017) for leading cancers in urban non-Hispanic AI/AN (NH AI/AN) compared to non-Hispanic White (NHW) populations living in the same urban areas. METHODS: Incident cases from population-based cancer registries were linked with the Indian Health Service patient registration database for improved racial classification of NH AI/AN populations. This study was limited to counties in Urban Indian Health Organization service areas. Analyses were conducted by geographic region. Age-adjusted rates (per 100,000) and trends (joinpoint regression) were calculated for leading cancers. RESULTS: Rates of colorectal, liver, and kidney cancers were higher overall for urban NH AI/AN compared to urban NHW populations. By region, rates of these cancers were 10% to nearly 4 times higher in NH AI/AN compared to NHW populations. Rates for breast, prostate, and lung cancer were lower in urban NH AI/AN compared to urban NHW populations. Incidence rates for kidney, liver, pancreatic, and breast cancers increased from 2% to nearly 7% annually between 1999 to 2017 in urban NH AI/AN populations. CONCLUSIONS: This study presents cancer incidence rates and trends for the leading cancers among urban NH AI/AN compared to urban NHW populations for the first time, by region, in the United States. Elevated risk of certain cancers among urban NH AI/AN populations and widening cancer disparities highlight important health inequities and missed opportunities for cancer prevention in this population.

      4. Social vulnerability and rurality associated with higher SARS-CoV-2 infection-induced seroprevalence: a nationwide blood donor study, United States, July 2020 - June 2021external icon
        Li Z, Lewis B, Berney K, Hallisey E, Williams AM, Whiteman A, Rivera-González LO, Clarke KE, Clayton H, Tincher T, Opsomer JD, Busch MP, Gundlapalli A, Jones JM.
        Clin Infect Dis. 2022 Feb 7.
        BACKGROUND: Most studies on health disparities during COVID-19 pandemic focused on reported cases and deaths, which are influenced by testing availability and access to care. This study aimed to examine SARS-CoV-2 antibody seroprevalence in the U.S. and its associations with race/ethnicity, rurality, and social vulnerability over time. METHODS: This repeated cross-sectional study used data from blood donations in 50 states and Washington, D.C. from July 2020 through June 2021. Donor ZIP codes were matched to counties and linked with Social Vulnerability Index (SVI) and urban-rural classification. SARS-CoV-2 antibody seroprevalences induced by infection and infection-vaccination combined were estimated. Association of infection-induced seropositivity with demographics, rurality, SVI, and its four themes were quantified using multivariate regression models. FINDINGS: Weighted seroprevalence differed significantly by race/ethnicity and rurality, and increased with increasing social vulnerability. During the study period, infection-induced seroprevalence increased from 1.6% to 27.2% and 3.7% to 20.0% in rural and urban counties, respectively, while rural counties had lower combined infection- and vaccination-induced seroprevalence (80.0% vs. 88.1%) in June 2021. Infection-induced seropositivity was associated with being Hispanic, non-Hispanic Black, and living in rural or higher socially vulnerable counties, after adjusting for demographic and geographic covariates. CONCLUSION: The findings demonstrated increasing SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence in the U.S. across all geographic, demographic, and social sectors. The study illustrated disparities by race-ethnicity, rurality, and social vulnerability. The findings identified areas for targeted vaccination strategies and can inform efforts to reduce inequities and prepare for future outbreaks.

      5. Given the potential benefits of SUD treatment compliance and the continuing problems associated with waiting for treatment, it is critical to establish an understanding of the factors that influence the cause and duration of waiting time for treatment services.The 2018 US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Treatment Episode Data Set-Admissions (TEDS-D) were used for this analysis. Prevalence odds ratios from the multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to determine associations between sociodemographic attributes and waiting times prior to SUD admission treatment. Compared to African Americans, the odds of waiting 1–7 days to enter treatment were highest among Alaskan Natives (OR = 1.637, 95% CI: 1.243–2.156). The odds of waiting more than 1 week to enter treatment were 1.690 times higher (95% CI: 1.299–2.197) among Blacks/African Americans after adjusting for race, marital status, employment, and biological sex; there was a statistically significant association between the level of educational attainment and waiting 1–7 days to enter treatment.This study shows that among adults seeking admission into a SUD treatment program, waiting times varies across different sociodemographic attributes especially race as non-Hispanic blacks had a shorter wait time compared to other races. © 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature.

      6. Association between social vulnerability and rates of HIV diagnoses among Black adults, by selected characteristics and region of residence - United States, 2018external icon
        Dailey AF, Gant Z, Hu X, Johnson Lyons S, Okello A, Satcher Johnson A.
        MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2022 Feb 4;71(5):167-170.
        During 2018, Black or African American (Black) persons accounted for 43% of all new diagnoses of HIV infection in the United States (1). The annual diagnosis rate (39.2 per 100,000 persons) among Black persons was four times the rate among all other racial/ethnic groups combined, indicating a profound disparity in HIV diagnoses (1,2). Community-level social and structural factors, such as social vulnerability, might help explain the higher rate of HIV diagnoses among Black persons. Social vulnerability refers to the potential negative health effects on communities caused by external stresses (3). CDC used National HIV Surveillance System (NHSS)* and Social Vulnerability Index (SVI)(†) data to examine the association between diagnosed HIV infections and social vulnerability among Black adults aged ≥18 years. Black adults in communities in the highest quartile of SVI were 1.5 times (rate ratio [RR] = 1.5; 95% CI = 1.4-1.6) as likely to receive a diagnosis of HIV infection as were those in communities in the lowest quartile. Because of a history of racial discrimination and residential segregation, some Black persons in the United States reside in communities with the highest social vulnerability (4,5), and this finding is associated with experiencing increased risk for HIV infection. The development and prioritization of interventions that address social determinants of health (i.e., the conditions in which persons are born, grow, live, work, and age), are critical to address the higher risk for HIV infection among Black adults living in communities with high levels of social vulnerability. Such interventions might help prevent HIV transmission and reduce disparities among Black adults.

      7. COVID-19 vaccination coverage and vaccine confidence by sexual orientation and gender identity - United States, August 29-October 30, 2021external icon
        McNaghten AD, Brewer NT, Hung MC, Lu PJ, Daskalakis D, Abad N, Kriss J, Black C, Wilhelm E, Lee JT, Gundlapalli A, Cleveland J, Elam-Evans L, Bonner K, Singleton J.
        MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2022 Feb 4;71(5):171-176.
        Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) populations have higher prevalences of health conditions associated with severe COVID-19 illness compared with non-LGBT populations (1). The potential for low vaccine confidence and coverage among LGBT populations is of concern because these persons historically experience challenges accessing, trusting, and receiving health care services (2). Data on COVID-19 vaccination among LGBT persons are limited, in part because of the lack of routine data collection on sexual orientation and gender identity at the national and state levels. During August 29-October 30, 2021, data from the National Immunization Survey Adult COVID Module (NIS-ACM) were analyzed to assess COVID-19 vaccination coverage and confidence in COVID-19 vaccines among LGBT adults aged ≥18 years. By sexual orientation, gay or lesbian adults reported higher vaccination coverage overall (85.4%) than did heterosexual adults (76.3%). By race/ethnicity, adult gay or lesbian non-Hispanic White men (94.1%) and women (88.5%), and Hispanic men (82.5%) reported higher vaccination coverage than that reported by non-Hispanic White heterosexual men (74.2%) and women (78. 6%). Among non-Hispanic Black adults, vaccination coverage was lower among gay or lesbian women (57.9%) and bisexual women (62.1%) than among heterosexual women (75.6%). Vaccination coverage was lowest among non-Hispanic Black LGBT persons across all categories of sexual orientation and gender identity. Among gay or lesbian adults and bisexual adults, vaccination coverage was lower among women (80.5% and 74.2%, respectively) than among men (88.9% and 81.7%, respectively). By gender identity, similar percentages of adults who identified as transgender or nonbinary and those who did not identify as transgender or nonbinary were vaccinated. Gay or lesbian adults and bisexual adults were more confident than were heterosexual adults in COVID-19 vaccine safety and protection; transgender or nonbinary adults were more confident in COVID-19 vaccine protection, but not safety, than were adults who did not identify as transgender or nonbinary. To prevent serious illness and death, it is important that all persons in the United States, including those in the LGBT community, stay up to date with recommended COVID-19 vaccinations.

      8. Variation in patterns of racial and ethnic disparities in primary and secondary syphilis diagnosis rates among heterosexually active women by region and age group in the United Statesexternal icon
        Martin EG, Ansari B, Rosenberg ES, Hart-Malloy R, Smith D, Bernstein KT, Chesson HW, Delaney K, Trigg M, Gift TL.
        Sex Transm Dis. 2022 Feb 2.
        BACKGROUND: Syphilis rates have increased substantially over the past decade. Women are an important population due to negative sequalae and adverse maternal outcomes including congenital syphilis. We assessed whether racial and ethnic disparities in primary and secondary (P&S) syphilis among heterosexually active women differ by region and age group. METHODS: We synthesized four national surveys to estimate numbers of heterosexually active women in the United States from 2014 through 2018 by region, race and ethnicity, and age group (18-24, 25-29, 30-44, and ≥ 45 years). We calculated annual P&S syphilis diagnosis rates, assessing disparities with rate differences and rate ratios comparing White, Hispanic, and Black heterosexually active women. RESULTS: Nationally, annual rates were 6.42 and 2.20 times as high among Black and Hispanic than among White heterosexually active women (10.99, 3.77, and 1.71 per 100,000, respectively). Younger women experienced a disproportionate burden of P&S syphilis and the highest disparities. Regionally, the Northeast had the highest Black-White and Hispanic-White disparities using a relative disparity measure (relative rate) and the West had the highest disparities using an absolute disparity measure (rate difference). CONCLUSIONS: To meet the racial and ethnic disparities goals of the Sexually Transmitted Infections National Strategic Plan, tailored local interventions that address the social and structural factors associated with disparities are needed for different age groups.

    • Healthcare Associated Infections
      1. West Nile virus transmission by solid organ transplantation and considerations for organ donor screening practices, United Statesexternal icon
        Soto RA, McDonald E, Annambhotla P, Velez JO, Laven J, Panella AJ, Machesky KD, White JL, Hyun J, Freuck E, Habel J, Oh D, Levi M, Hasz R, Eidbo E, Staples JE, Basavaraju SV, Gould CV.
        Emerg Infect Dis. 2022 Feb;28(2):403-406.
        West Nile virus (WNV) is the most common domestic arbovirus in the United States. During 2018, WNV was transmitted through solid organ transplantation to 2 recipients who had neuroinvasive disease develop. Because of increased illness and death in transplant recipients, organ procurement organizations should consider screening during region-specific WNV transmission months.

      2. Pathogens attributed to central line-associated bloodstream infections in US acute care hospitals during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemicexternal icon
        Weiner-Lastinger LM, Haass K, Gross C, Leaptrot D, Wong E, Wu H, Dudeck MA.
        Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol. 2022 Feb 8:1-13.
        To assess potential changes in the pathogens attributed to central line-associated bloodstream infections between 2019 and 2020, hospital data from the National Healthcare Safety Network were analyzed. Compared to 2019, increases in the proportions of pathogens identified as Enterococcus faecalis and coagulase-negative staphylococci were observed during 2020.

      3. Prevalence of carbapenemase-producing organisms among hospitalized solid organ transplant recipients, five US hospitals, 2019-2020external icon
        Chan JL, Nazarian E, Musser KA, Snavely EA, Fung M, Doernberg SB, Pouch SM, Leekha S, Anesi JA, Kodiyanplakkal RP, Turbett SE, Spalding Walters M, Epstein L.
        Transpl Infect Dis. 2022 Jan 5:e13785.
        BACKGROUND: Passive reporting to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has identified carbapenemase-producing organisms (CPOs) among solid organ transplant (SOT) recipients, potentially representing an emerging source of spread. We analyzed CPO prevalence in wards where SOT recipients receive inpatient care to inform public health action to prevent transmission. METHODS: From September 2019 to June 2020, five US hospitals conducted consecutive point prevalence surveys (PPS) of all consenting patients admitted to transplant units, regardless of transplant status. We used the Cepheid Xpert Carba-R assay to identify carbapenemase genes (bla(KPC) , bla(NDM) , bla(VIM) , bla(IMP) , bla(OXA-48) ) from rectal swabs. Laboratory-developed molecular tests were used to retrospectively test for a wider range of bla(IMP) and bla(OXA) variants. RESULTS: In total, 154 patients were screened and 92 (60%) were SOT recipients. CPOs were detected among 7 (8%) SOT recipients, from two of five screened hospitals: four bla(KPC) , one bla(NDM) , and two blaOXA(-23) . CPOs were detected in two (3%) of 62 non-transplant patients. In three of five participating hospitals, CPOs were not identified among any patients admitted to transplant units. CONCLUSIONS: Longitudinal surveillance in transplant units, as well as PPS in areas with diverse CPO epidemiology, may inform the utility of routine screening in SOT units to prevent the spread of CPOs.

    • Immune System Disorders
      1. Case report: A fatal case of latent melioidosis activated by COVID-19external icon
        Gulati U, Nanduri AC, Juneja P, Kaufman D, Elrod MG, Kolton CB, Gee JE, Garafalo K, Blaney DD.
        Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2022 Feb 3.
        Melioidosis, endemic in Southeast Asia and Northern Australia, is an uncommon but frequently fatal opportunistic infection caused by the Gram-negative saprophyte Burkholderia pseudomallei. We describe the first reported case of activation of latent melioidosis concurrent with COVID-19-associated lymphopenia and neutropenia in the setting of poorly controlled diabetes. A 43-year-old HIV-positive, diabetic man presented to the emergency department with persistent chills and progressive dyspnea. He was admitted for hypoxia. Chest X-ray showed bilateral parenchymal infiltrates suspicious for COVID-19. Shortly after admission, he became acutely encephalopathic, had a generalized seizure, and was transferred to the intensive care unit after intubation. Further workup showed severe neutropenia and lymphopenia. The patient received empiric antimicrobial coverage and was found to be severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 positive. He deteriorated rapidly with refractory shock and persistent hypoxemia, and died 40 hours after admission. Blood cultures and sputum cultures obtained via bronchoalveolar lavage returned positive for Burkholderia pseudomallei. Given confirmed compliance with antiretrovirals, stable CD4 counts, and no recent foreign travel, the patient likely contracted the B. pseudomallei infection from travel to Southeast Asia many years prior and only became symptomatic after succumbing to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection. This case highlights the importance of considering activation of latent opportunistic infections by COVID-19 in immunocompromised patients.

      2. Prolonged shedding of SARS-CoV-2 at high viral loads amongst hospitalised immunocompromised persons living with HIV, South Africaexternal icon
        Meiring S, Tempia S, Bhiman JN, Buys A, Kleynhans J, Makhasi M, McMorrow M, Moyes J, Quan V, Walaza S, du Plessis M, Wolter N, von Gottberg A, Cohen C.
        Clin Infect Dis. 2022 Feb 2.
        BACKGROUND: We assessed SARS-CoV-2 RNA shedding duration and magnitude amongst persons living with HIV (PLHIV). METHODS: From May through December 2020, we conducted a prospective cohort study at 20 hospitals in South Africa. Adults hospitalised with symptomatic COVID-19 were enrolled and followed every two days with nasopharyngeal/oropharyngeal (NP/OP) swabs until documentation of cessation of SARS-CoV-2 shedding (two consecutive negative NP/OP swabs). Real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction testing for SARS-CoV-2 was performed and Cycle-threshold (Ct) values <30 were considered a proxy for high SARS-CoV-2 viral load. Factors associated with prolonged shedding were assessed using accelerated time-failure Weibull regression models. RESULTS: Of 2,175 COVID-19 patients screened, 300 were enrolled and 257 individuals (155 HIV-uninfected and 102 PLHIV) had >1 swabbing visit (median 5 visits (range2-21)). Median time to cessation of shedding was 13 days (inter-quartile range (IQR)6-25) and did not differ significantly by HIV-infection. DISCUSSION: Amongst a subset of 94 patients (41 PLHIV and 53 HIV-uninfected) with initial respiratory sample Ct-value <30, median time of shedding at high SARS-CoV-2 viral load was 8 days (IQR4-17). This was significantly longer in PLHIV with CD4 count<200cells/µl, compared to HIV-uninfected persons (median 27 days (IQR8-43) versus 7 days (IQR 4-13); aHR 0.14, 95%CI 0.07-0.28, p<0.001), with similar results in unsuppressed-HIV versus HIV-uninfected persons. CONCLUSION: Although SARS-CoV-2 shedding duration did not differ significantly by HIV-infection, amongst a subset with high initial SARS-CoV-2 viral loads, immunocompromised PLHIV shed SARS-CoV-2 at high viral loads for longer than HIV-uninfected persons. Better HIV control may potentially decrease transmission time of SARS-CoV-2.

    • Immunity and Immunization
      1. Attitudes toward COVID-19 illness and COVID-19 vaccination among pregnant women: A cross-sectional multicenter study during August-December 2020external icon
        Battarbee AN, Stockwell MS, Varner M, Newes-Adeyi G, Daugherty M, Gyamfi-Bannerman C, Tita AT, Vorwaller K, Vargas C, Subramaniam A, Reichle L, Galang RR, Powers E, Lucca-Susana M, Parks M, Chen TJ, Razzaghi H, Dawood FS.
        Am J Perinatol. 2022 Jan;39(1):75-83.
        OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to evaluate pregnant women's attitudes toward COVID-19 illness and vaccination and identify factors associated with vaccine acceptability. STUDY DESIGN: This was a cross-sectional survey among pregnant women enrolled in a prospective COVID-19 cohort study in Salt Lake City, UT, Birmingham, AL, and New York, NY, from August 9 to December 10, 2020. Women were eligible if they were 18 to 50 years old and <28 weeks of gestation. Upon enrollment, women completed surveys regarding concerns about COVID-19 illness and likelihood of getting COVID-19 vaccine if one were available during pregnancy. Vaccine acceptability was defined as a response of "very likely" or "somewhat likely" on a 4-point Likert scale. Factors associated with vaccine acceptability were assessed with multivariable logistic regression. RESULTS: Of 939 pregnant women eligible for the main cohort study, 915 (97%) consented to participate. Among these 915 women, 39% self-identified as White, 23% Black, 33% Hispanic, and 4% Other. Sixty-two percent received an influenza vaccine last season. Seventy-two percent worried about getting sick with COVID-19. If they were to get sick, 92% worried about harm to their pregnancy and 80% about harm to themselves. Only 41% reported they would get a vaccine. Of women who were unlikely to get vaccinated, the most frequently cited concern was vaccine safety for their pregnancy (82%). Non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic women had lower odds of accepting a vaccine compared with non-Hispanic White women (adjusted odds ratios [aOR] 0.4, 95% CI 0.2-0.6 for both). Receipt of influenza vaccine during the previous season was associated with higher odds of vaccine acceptability (aOR 2.1, 95% CI 1.5-3.0). CONCLUSION: Although most pregnant women worried about COVID-19 illness, <50% were willing to get vaccinated during pregnancy. Racial and ethnic disparities in plans to accept COVID-19 vaccine highlight the need to prioritize strategies to address perceived barriers among groups at high risk for COVID-19. KEY POINTS: · Less than half of pregnant patients stated they would get a COVID-19 vaccine.. · Protecting their baby was the most common reason for acceptance and refusal of the COVID-19 vaccine.. · Patients of minority race/ethnicity and those without prior influenza vaccination were less likely to accept the COVID-19 vaccine..

      2. Strategies associated with COVID-19 vaccine coverage among nursing home staffexternal icon
        Berry SD, Baier RR, Syme M, Gouskova N, Bishnoi C, Patel U, Leitson M, Gharpure R, Stone ND, Link-Gelles R, Gifford DR.
        J Am Geriatr Soc. 2022 Jan;70(1):19-28.
        BACKGROUND: After the first of three COVID-19 vaccination clinics in U.S. nursing homes (NHs), the median vaccination coverage of staff was 37.5%, indicating the need to identify strategies to increase staff coverage. We aimed at comparing the facility-level activities, policies, incentives, and communication methods associated with higher staff COVID-19 vaccination coverage. METHODS: Design. Case-control analysis. SETTING: Nationally stratified random sample of 1338 U.S. NHs participating in the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program. PARTICIPANTS: Nursing home leadership. MEASUREMENT: During February 4-March 2, 2021, we surveyed NHs with low (<35%), medium (40%-60%), and high (>75%) staff vaccination coverage, to collect information on facility strategies used to encourage staff vaccination. Cases were respondents with medium and high vaccination coverage, whereas controls were respondents with low coverage. We used logistic regression modeling, adjusted for county and NH characteristics, to identify strategies associated with facility-level vaccination coverage. RESULTS: We obtained responses from 413 of 1338 NHs (30.9%). Compared with facilities with lower staff vaccination coverage, facilities with medium or high coverage were more likely to have designated frontline staff champions (medium: adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 3.6, 95% CI 1.3-10.3; high: aOR 2.9, 95% CI 1.1-7.7) and set vaccination goals (medium: aOR 2.4, 95% 1.0-5.5; high: aOR 3.7, 95% CI 1.6-8.3). NHs with high vaccination coverage were more likely to have given vaccinated staff rewards such as T-shirts compared with NHs with low coverage (aOR 3.8, 95% CI 1.3-11.0). Use of multiple strategies was associated with greater likelihood of facilities having medium or high vaccination coverage: For example, facilities that used ≥9 strategies were three times more likely to have high staff vaccination coverage than facilities using <6 strategies (aOR 3.3, 95% CI 1.2-8.9). CONCLUSIONS: Use of designated champions, setting targets, and use of non-monetary awards were associated with high NH staff COVID-19 vaccination coverage.

      3. Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV; Family Togaviridae), is an endemic pathogen first isolated in 1933 with distribution primarily in the eastern US and Canada. The virus has caused periodic outbreaks in both humans and equines along the eastern seaboard and through the southern coastal states. While the outbreaks caused by EEEV have been sporadic and varied geographically since the discovery of the virus, it has continued to expand its range moving into the Midwest states as well. Additionally, one of the largest outbreaks was recorded in 2019 prompting concerns that outbreaks were becoming larger and more frequent. Because the virus can cause serious disease and because it is transmissible by both mosquitoes and aerosol, there has been renewed interest in identifying potential options for vaccines. Currently, there are no licensed vaccines and control relies completely on the use of personal protective measures and integrated vector control which have limited effectiveness for the EEEV vectors. Several vaccine candidates are currently being developed; this review will describe the multiple options under consideration for future development and assess their relative advantages and disadvantages.

      4. Notes from the field: COVID-19 vaccination among persons living with diagnosed HIV infection - New York, October 2021external icon
        Tesoriero JM, Patterson W, Daskalakis D, Chicoine J, Morne J, Braunstein S, Rajulu DT, Rosenberg E.
        MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2022 Feb 4;71(5):182-184.

      5. Surveillance of COVID-19 vaccination in nursing homes, United States, December 2020-July 2021external icon
        Geller AI, Budnitz DS, Dubendris H, Gharpure R, Soe M, Wu H, Kalayil EJ, Benin AL, Patel SA, Lindley MC, Link-Gelles R.
        Public Health Rep. 2022 Feb 5:333549211066168.
        Monitoring COVID-19 vaccination coverage among nursing home residents and staff is important to ensure high coverage rates and guide patient-safety policies. With the termination of the federal Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program, another source of facility-based vaccination data is needed. We compared numbers of COVID-19 vaccinations administered to nursing home residents and staff reported by pharmacies participating in the temporary federal Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program with the numbers of COVID-19 vaccinations reported by nursing homes participating in new COVID-19 vaccination modules of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN). Pearson correlation coefficients comparing the number vaccinated between the 2 approaches were 0.89, 0.96, and 0.97 for residents and 0.74, 0.90, and 0.90 for staff, in the weeks ending January 3, 10, and 17, 2021, respectively. Based on subsequent NHSN reporting, vaccination coverage with ≥1 vaccine dose reached 73.7% for residents and 47.6% for staff the week ending January 31 and increased incrementally through July 2021. Continued monitoring of COVID-19 vaccination coverage is important as new nursing home residents are admitted, new staff are hired, and additional doses of vaccine are recommended.

      6. A decade of data: Adolescent vaccination in the vaccine safety datalink, 2007 through 2016external icon
        Irving SA, Groom HC, Dandamudi P, Daley MF, Donahue JG, Gee J, Hechter R, Jackson LA, Klein NP, Liles E, Myers TR, Stokley S.
        Vaccine. 2022 Feb 3.
        BACKGROUND: Between May 2005 and March 2007, three vaccines were recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for routine use in adolescents in the United States: quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MenACWY), tetanus, diphtheria and acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap), and human papillomavirus vaccine (HPV). Understanding historical adolescent vaccination patterns may inform future vaccination coverage efforts for these and emerging adolescent vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccines. METHODS: This was a descriptive, retrospective cohort study. All vaccines administered to adolescents aged 11 through 18 years in the Vaccine Safety Datalink population between January 1, 2007 and December 31, 2016 were examined. Vaccination coverage was assessed by study year for ≥1 dose Tdap or Td, ≥1 dose Tdap, ≥1 dose MenACWY, ≥1 dose HPV, and ≥3 dose HPV. The proportion of vaccine visits with concurrent vaccination (≥2 vaccines administered at the same visit) was calculated by sex and study year. The most common vaccine combinations administered in the study population were described by sex for two time periods: 2007-2010 and 2011-2016. RESULTS: The number of 11-18-year-olds in the study population averaged 522,565 males and 503,112 females per study year. Between January 2007 and December 2016 there were 4,884,553 vaccine visits in this population (45% among males). The overall proportion of concurrent vaccine visits among males was 43% (33-61% by study year). Among females, 39% of all vaccine visits included concurrent vaccination (32-48% by study year). Vaccine coverage for Tdap, MenACWY, and 1- and 3-dose HPV increased across the study period. A wide variety of vaccine combinations were administered among both sexes and in both time periods. CONCLUSIONS: The high vaccine uptake and multitude of vaccine combinations administered concurrently in the adolescent population of the Vaccine Safety Datalink provide historical patterns with which to compare future adolescent vaccination campaigns.

    • Injury and Violence
      1. Male romantic jealousy is a commonly cited driver of intimate partner violence (IPV) against women. An in-depth, contextualised understanding of the pathways and mechanisms from jealousy to intimate partner violence is however needed to inform programmes and interventions. We triangulated data from 48 interviews, eight focus groups and 1216 survey findings from low-income married women and men in northern Ecuador. Male jealousy was associated with controlling behaviours (aOR: 14.47, 95% CI: 9.47, 22.12) and sexual intimate partner violence (aOR: 2.4, 95% CI: 1.12, 5.12). Controlling behaviours were associated with physical and sexual intimate partner violence (aOR: 2.16, 95% CI: 1.21, 3.84). Qualitatively we found that most respondents framed jealousy within a discourse of love, and three triggers of male jealousy leading to intimate partner violence were identified: (1) community gossip, which acted as a mechanism of community control over women's movements and sexuality; (2) women joining the labour force, which was quantitatively associated with intimate partner violence and partially mediated by jealousy; and (3) women's refusal to have sex, which could lead husbands to coerce sex through accusations of infidelity. Gender-transformative interventions at the individual, couple and community level providing models of alternative masculinities and femininities may offer promise in reducing intimate partner violence in Ecuador. Importantly, future economic empowerment interventions should address jealousy to mitigate potential intimate partner violence backlash.

      2. BACKGROUND: One in five older adults (age 65+) uses an antidepressant medication. However, little is known about how fall risk differs between commonly prescribed medications. We examine the comparative association between individual selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) and self-reported falls in older adults. METHODS: We used data from 2010-2017 Medicare Current Beneficiary Surveys, a nationally representative survey of Medicare beneficiaries. We included participants from three different panels surveyed over two successive years. Participants were limited to community-dwelling Medicare beneficiaries 65+, enrolled in Medicare Part D, and taking an SSRI (n = 1023) during baseline years. Participants were asked about demographic and health characteristics, medication use (including dose, frequency, duration of use) and self-reported falls as any fall or recurrent falls in the past year. We compared individual SSRI (citalopram or escitalopram vs sertraline) use by the average monthly total standardized daily dose (TSDD) and self-reported falling, controlling for potential confounders. Descriptive analysis and multivariable logistic regressions were conducted using SAS-callable SUDAAN. RESULTS: Citalopram/escitalopram (n = 460 users; 45.0% of all SSRI users) and sertraline (n = 294 users; 28.7% of all SSRI users) were the most commonly prescribed SSRIs. Overall, 36.3% of citalopram/escitalopram users and 39.4% of sertraline users reported a fall in the year following medication use. There were no statistically significant differences between sertraline and citalopram/escitalopram users of either low or medium TSDD levels in the risk of self-reported any or recurrent falls. However, users of high TSDD of sertraline (>75 mg) had a lower risk of recurrent falls compared to high TSDD citalopram (>30 mg) or escitalopram (>15 mg) daily for 30 days. CONCLUSION: These findings suggest a potential comparative safety benefit of sertraline compared to citalopram/escitalopram at high doses related to recurrent falls. Additional comparative studies of individual antidepressants may better inform fall risk management and prescribing for older adults.

      3. BACKGROUND: Compared with civilians, service members and veterans who have a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI) are more likely to experience poorer physical and mental health. To investigate this further, this article examines the association between self-reported history of TBI with loss of consciousness and living with 1 or more current disabilities (ie, serious difficulty with hearing, vision, cognition, or mobility; any difficulty with self-care or independent living) for both veterans and nonveterans. METHODS: A cross-sectional study using data from the North Carolina Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System for 4733 veterans and nonveterans aged 18 years and older. RESULTS: Approximately 34.7% of veterans residing in North Carolina reported having a lifetime history of TBI compared with 23.6% of nonveterans. Veterans reporting a lifetime history of TBI had a 1.4 times greater risk of also reporting living with a current disability (adjusted prevalence ratio = 1.4; 95% confidence interval, 1.2-1.8) compared with nonveterans. The most common types of disabilities reported were mobility, cognitive, and hearing. CONCLUSIONS: Compared with nonveterans, veterans who reported a lifetime history of TBI had an increased risk of reporting a current disability. Future studies, such as longitudinal studies, may further explore this to inform the development of interventions.

      4. Concussion evaluation patterns among US adultsexternal icon
        Womack LS, Breiding MJ, Daugherty J.
        J Head Trauma Rehabil. 2022 Feb 1.
        OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to compare individuals who were not evaluated by a doctor or nurse for a self-reported concussion versus individuals who were evaluated for a concussion by demographic variables, concussion history, and concussion circumstances. SETTINGS AND PARTICIPANTS: Data were collected from 2018 SpringStyles, a web-based panel survey of US adults 18 years or older (n = 6427), fielded in March-April. DESIGN: Cross-sectional. MAIN MEASURES: Respondents were asked whether they believed they had sustained a concussion in their lifetime and details about their most recent concussion, including whether they were evaluated by a doctor or nurse. RESULTS: Twenty-seven percent of adults in the survey reported a lifetime concussion (n = 1835). Among those individuals, 50.4% were not evaluated by a healthcare provider for their most recent concussion. Not being evaluated was higher among individuals whose concussion was caused by a slip, trip, or fall (adjusted prevalence ratio [APR] = 2.22; 95% CI, 1.65-2.99), riding a bicycle (APR = 2.28; 95% CI, 1.58-3.27), being struck by or against something by accident (APR = 2.50; 95% CI, 1.88-3.34), or being struck by or against something during a fight or argument (APR = 2.89; 95% CI, 2.11-3.97), compared with individuals whose concussion was caused by a motor vehicle crash. No evaluation was also higher among individuals whose concussion occurred while engaging in a sports or recreational activity (APR = 1.39; 95% CI, 1.07-1.82) or engaging in regular activities around the house (APR = 1.65; 95% CI, 1.27-2.14), compared with individuals whose concussion occurred while working for pay. CONCLUSION: More than a quarter of adults reported a lifetime concussion; however, half of them were not evaluated for their last concussion by a healthcare provider. Examination by a healthcare professional for a suspected concussion may prevent or mitigate potential long-term sequelae. Furthermore, current US surveillance methods may underestimate the burden of TBI because many individuals do not seek evaluation.

      5. The association between school district-based policies related to concussions and concussions among high school studentsexternal icon
        Miller GF, Sarmiento K, Haarbauer-Krupa J, Everett Jones S.
        J Sch Health. 2022 Feb;92(2):140-147.
        BACKGROUND: Little is known about the effectiveness of school district concussion policies on reducing the concussion prevalence among students. METHODS: Data from the 2016 School Health Policies and Practices Study and 2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey for 10 school districts were linked. The outcome variable was having a sports- or physical activity-related concussion during the 12 months before of the survey. Exposure variables were 2 district policies, including district-funded professional development and prioritizing return to the classroom before returning to athletics. Logistic regression models estimated the odds of a concussion among students in districts with one, both, or neither policy (referent). RESULTS: In districts with district-funded professional development, the odds of students self-reporting ≥2 sports- or physical activity-related concussions were 1.4 times higher than in districts with neither policy. In districts with a policy prioritizing a return to the classroom before returning to athletics, the odds of students self-reporting ≥2 concussions were significantly lower (OR = 0.6) than in districts with neither policy. CONCLUSION: School district concussion policies may have positive effects by identifying and reducing multiple concussions among students.

      6. Introduction: Many federal and national partners have a renewed commitment to addressing health equity and racial equity as a public health issue of concern. These are especially important issues in addressing many injury and violence prevention (IVP) topic areas. In developing and updating approaches to address injury and violence-related health and racial equity challenges, CDC and Safe States Alliance wanted to better understand how partners in the field are already approaching these issues. An environmental scan was conducted to explore how IVP professionals advance health equity and racial equity in their programmatic work. Methods: Data collection occurred from multiple sources including focus groups and surveys. Health equity and racial equity-related questions were added to the Safe States Member Survey: Evaluating the Impact of COVID-19 on the IVP Workforce and Assessing Equity Initiative (COVID Impact and Equity Survey). An analysis of secondary data sources was conducted through ongoing evaluation initiatives at Safe States Alliance (the COVID Impact Evaluation and Connections Lab Evaluation Focus Groups). Conclusions: Successes and challenges were identified through the environmental scan that primarily fell into three categories: (1) Injury and Violence Prevention Strategies and Programs, (2) Using IVP Data to Inform Equity Approaches, (3) Equity Approaches in IVP Infrastructure. Practical Applications: Practical applications were identified that can be supported at the local, state, and federal/national level and are specific to the areas of IVP strategies and programs, IVP data and surveillance, and IVP organizational infrastructure. A few examples include: (1) Ensuring decision-making power and ownership of programs is shared between community partners and funders; (2) Working with national/federal surveillance system partners to ensure demographic fields/variables are improved to identify disparities and inequities; (3) Development of an “Injury and Violence Prevention Equity Institute” to better prepare IVP professionals to address health and racial equity challenges. © 2022

      7. Systematic review on quantifying pedestrian injury when evaluating changes to the built environmentexternal icon
        Pollack Porter KM, Omura JD, Ballard RM, Peterson EL, Carlson SA.
        Prev Med Rep. 2022 Apr;26:101703.
        Modifying the built environment to make communities more walkable remains one strategy to promote physical activity. These modifications may have the added benefit of reducing the risk of pedestrian injury; however, there is a gap in the physical activity literature regarding how best to measure pedestrian injury. Examining the measures that have been used and related data sources can help inform the use of pedestrian injury data to evaluate whether safety is optimized as walking increases. We conducted a systematic review of the literature to identify studies that evaluated changes to the built environment that support walking and measures impacts on pedestrian injury as a measure of safety. We searched PubMed, PsycInfo, and Web of Science to identify peer-review studies and websites of fifteen organizations to document studies from the grey literature published in English between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2018. Our search identified twelve studies that met the inclusion criteria. The few studies that measured changes in pedestrian injury used crash data from police reports. Injury frequency was often reported, but not injury severity, and no studies reported injury risk based on walking exposure. We conclude that few studies have measured pedestrian injury in the context of creating more walkable communities. Future research would benefit from using well-characterized measures from existing studies to support consistency in measurement, and from more longitudinal and evaluation research to strengthen the evidence on additional benefits of walkability. Increased collaborations with injury prevention professionals could bolster use of valid and reliable measures.

    • Laboratory Sciences
      1. Snell dwarf mice with the Pit1(dw/dw) mutation are deficient in growth hormone, prolactin, and thyroid stimulating hormone and exhibit >40% lifespan extension. This longevity is accompanied by compromised muscular performance. However, research regarding young (3-month-old) Snell dwarf mice demonstrate exceptional responsivity to resistance-type training especially in terms of a shifted fiber type distribution and increased protein levels of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1), a possible mediator of such remodeling. In the present study, we investigated whether this responsiveness persists at 12 months of age. Unlike 12-month-old control mice, age-matched Snell dwarf mice remained resistant to training-induced maladaptive decreases in performance and muscle mass. This was accompanied by retainment of the remodeling capacity in muscles of Snell dwarf mice to increase VCAM-1 protein levels and a shift in myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoform distribution with training. Even decreasing training frequency for control mice, an alteration which protected muscles from maladaptation at 12 months of age, did not result in the overt remodeling observed for Snell dwarf mice. The results demonstrate a distinct remodeling response to resistance-type exercise operative in the context of the Pit1(dw/dw) mutation of long-lived Snell dwarf mice.

      2. Stable flow-induced expression of KLK10 inhibits endothelial inflammation and atherosclerosisexternal icon
        Williams D, Mahmoud M, Liu R, Andueza A, Kumar S, Kang DW, Zhang J, Tamargo I, Villa-Roel N, Baek KI, Lee H, An Y, Zhang L, Tate EW, Bagchi P, Pohl J, Mosnier LO, Diamandis EP, Mihara K, Hollenberg MD, Dai Z, Jo H.
        Elife. 2022 Jan 11;11.
        Atherosclerosis preferentially occurs in arterial regions exposed to disturbed blood flow (d-flow), while regions exposed to stable flow (s-flow) are protected. The proatherogenic and atheroprotective effects of d-flow and s-flow are mediated in part by the global changes in endothelial cell (EC) gene expression, which regulates endothelial dysfunction, inflammation, and atherosclerosis. Previously, we identified kallikrein-related peptidase 10 (Klk10, a secreted serine protease) as a flow-sensitive gene in mouse arterial ECs, but its role in endothelial biology and atherosclerosis was unknown. Here, we show that KLK10 is upregulated under s-flow conditions and downregulated under d-flow conditions using in vivo mouse models and in vitro studies with cultured ECs. Single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNAseq) and scATAC sequencing (scATACseq) study using the partial carotid ligation mouse model showed flow-regulated Klk10 expression at the epigenomic and transcription levels. Functionally, KLK10 protected against d-flow-induced permeability dysfunction and inflammation in human artery ECs, as determined by NFκB activation, expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 and intracellular adhesion molecule 1, and monocyte adhesion. Furthermore, treatment of mice in vivo with rKLK10 decreased arterial endothelial inflammation in d-flow regions. Additionally, rKLK10 injection or ultrasound-mediated transfection of Klk10-expressing plasmids inhibited atherosclerosis in Apoe(-/-) mice. Moreover, KLK10 expression was significantly reduced in human coronary arteries with advanced atherosclerotic plaques compared to those with less severe plaques. KLK10 is a flow-sensitive endothelial protein that serves as an anti-inflammatory, barrier-protective, and anti-atherogenic factor.

      3. Postmortem surveillance for ebola virus using OraQuick Ebola rapid diagnostic tests, Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, 2019-2020external icon
        Mukadi-Bamuleka D, Sanogo YO, Bulabula-Penge J, Morales-Betoulle ME, Fillon P, Woodruff P, Choi MJ, Whitesell A, Todres AM, De Weggheleire A, Legand A, Muyembe-Tamfum JJ, Formenty P, Klena JD, Montgomery JM, Ahuka-Mundeke S.
        Emerg Infect Dis. 2022 Feb;28(2):420-424.
        After a pilot study, we tested 443 cadavers using OraQuick Ebola rapid diagnostic tests during surveillance after the 10th Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. No false negative and 2% false-positive results were reported. Quickly returning results and engaging the community enabled timely public health actions.

      4. Multiplexed CRISPR-based microfluidic platform for clinical testing of respiratory viruses and identification of SARS-CoV-2 variantsexternal icon
        Welch NL, Zhu M, Hua C, Weller J, Mirhashemi ME, Nguyen TG, Mantena S, Bauer MR, Shaw BM, Ackerman CM, Thakku SG, Tse MW, Kehe J, Uwera MM, Eversley JS, Bielwaski DA, McGrath G, Braidt J, Johnson J, Cerrato F, Moreno GK, Krasilnikova LA, Petros BA, Gionet GL, King E, Huard RC, Jalbert SK, Cleary ML, Fitzgerald NA, Gabriel SB, Gallagher GR, Smole SC, Madoff LC, Brown CM, Keller MW, Wilson MM, Kirby MK, Barnes JR, Park DJ, Siddle KJ, Happi CT, Hung DT, Springer M, MacInnis BL, Lemieux JE, Rosenberg E, Branda JA, Blainey PC, Sabeti PC, Myhrvold C.
        Nat Med. 2022 Feb 7.
        The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated a clear need for high-throughput, multiplexed, and sensitive assays for detecting SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses as well as their emerging variants. Here, we present a cost-effective virus and variant detection platform, called microfluidic CARMEN (mCARMEN), that combines CRISPR-based diagnostics and microfluidics with a streamlined workflow for clinical use. We developed the mCARMEN respiratory virus panel (RVP) to test for up to 21 viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, other coronaviruses and both influenza strains, and demonstrated its diagnostic-grade performance on 525 patient specimens in an academic setting and 166 specimens in a clinical setting. We further developed an mCARMEN panel to enable identification of 6 SARS-CoV-2 variant lineages, including Delta and Omicron, and evaluated it on 2,088 patient specimens, with near-perfect concordance to sequencing-based variant classification. Lastly, we implemented a combined Cas13 and Cas12 approach that enables quantitative measurement of SARS-CoV-2 and influenza A viral copies in samples. The mCARMEN platform enables high-throughput surveillance of multiple viruses and variants simultaneously, enabling rapid detection of SARS-CoV-2 variants.

      5. Assessment of SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence by community survey and residual specimens, Denver, Colorado, July-August 2020external icon
        Kugeler KJ, Podewils LJ, Alden NB, Burket TL, Kawasaki B, Biggerstaff BJ, Biggs HM, Zacks R, Foster MA, Lim T, McDonald E, Tate JE, Herlihy RK, Drobeniuc J, Cortese MM.
        Public Health Rep. 2022 Jan-Feb;137(1):128-136.
        OBJECTIVES: The number of SARS-CoV-2 infections is underestimated in surveillance data. Various approaches to assess the seroprevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 have different resource requirements and generalizability. We estimated the seroprevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in Denver County, Colorado, via a cluster-sampled community survey. METHODS: We estimated the overall seroprevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 via a community seroprevalence survey in Denver County in July 2020, described patterns associated with seroprevalence, and compared results with cumulative COVID-19 incidence as reported to the health department during the same period. In addition, we compared seroprevalence as assessed with a temporally and geographically concordant convenience sample of residual clinical specimens from a commercial laboratory. RESULTS: Based on 404 specimens collected through the community survey, 8.0% (95% CI, 3.9%-15.7%) of Denver County residents had antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, an infection rate of about 7 times that of the 1.1% cumulative reported COVID-19 incidence during this period. The estimated infection-to-reported case ratio was highest among children (34.7; 95% CI, 11.1-91.2) and males (10.8; 95% CI, 5.7-19.3). Seroprevalence was highest among males of Black race or Hispanic ethnicity and was associated with previous COVID-19-compatible illness, a previous positive SARS-CoV-2 test result, and close contact with someone who had confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. Testing of 1598 residual clinical specimens yielded a seroprevalence of 6.8% (95% CI, 5.0%-9.2%); the difference between the 2 estimates was 1.2 percentage points (95% CI, -3.6 to 12.2 percentage points). CONCLUSIONS: Testing residual clinical specimens provided a similar seroprevalence estimate yet yielded limited insight into the local epidemiology of COVID-19 and might be less representative of the source population than a cluster-sampled community survey. Awareness of the limitations of various sampling strategies is necessary when interpreting findings from seroprevalence assessments.

      6. Acceptance of saliva-based specimen collection for SARS-CoV-2 testing among K-12 students, teachers, and staffexternal icon
        McLaughlin HP, Worrell MC, Malone S, Dawson P, Maricque B, Halpin JL, Lee S, Fritz SA, Tinker SC, Neidich JA, Towns K, Lee JS, Barrios LC, Neatherlin JC, Newland JG, Salzer JS.
        Public Health Rep. 2022 Feb 9:333549221074395.
        OBJECTIVE: Saliva specimens collected in school populations may offer a more feasible, noninvasive alternative to nasal swabs for large-scale COVID-19 testing efforts in kindergarten through 12th grade (K-12) schools. We investigated acceptance of saliva-based COVID-19 testing among quarantined K-12 students and their parents, teachers, and staff members who recently experienced a SARS-CoV-2 exposure in school. METHODS: We surveyed 719 participants, in person or by telephone, who agreed to or declined a free saliva-based COVID-19 reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction test as part of a surveillance investigation about whether they would have consented to testing if offered a nasal swab instead. We conducted this investigation in 6 school districts in Greene County (n = 3) and St. Louis County (n = 3), Missouri, from January 25 through March 23, 2021. RESULTS: More than one-third (160 of 446) of K-12 students (or their parents or guardians), teachers, and staff members who agreed to a saliva-based COVID-19 test indicated they would have declined testing if specimen collection were by nasal swab. When stratified by school level, 51% (67 of 132) of elementary school students or their parents or guardians would not have agreed to testing if a nasal swab was offered. CONCLUSIONS: Some students, especially those in elementary school, preferred saliva-based COVID-19 testing to nasal swab testing. Use of saliva-based testing might increase voluntary participation in screening efforts in K-12 schools to help prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

    • Maternal and Child Health
      1. Designing your patient's prenatal care "PATH": Recommendations for maternity care professionals based on MiPATHexternal icon
        Peahl A, Turrentine M, Barfield W, Blackwell S, Zahn C.
        Contemporary OB/GYN. 2022 ;67(1):27-30.
        The article provides recommendations for maternity care professionals when designing their patient's prenatal care Plan for Appropriate Tailored Healthcare (PATH). Topics discussed include evidence supporting prenatal care recommendations, information on Michigan PATH (MiPATH) panel process, and MiPATH panel recommendations which includes screening for medical, social, and structural determinants of health, telemedicine, and supporting for social and structural determinants.

      2. Common challenges and identified solutions for state newborn screening programs during COVID-19 pandemicexternal icon
        Simon D, Broadbridge E, Baker M, Gaviglio A, Gruber D, Piper KN, Tavakoli NP, Sullivan J, Kennedy A.
        International Journal of Neonatal Screening. 2022 ;8(1).
        During the COVID-19 pandemic, state newborn screening programs faced challenges to ensure this essential public health program continued to function at a high level. In December 2020, the EveryLife Foundation for Rare Diseases held a workshop to discuss these common challenges and solutions. Newborn screening officials described challenges including short staffing across the entire program, collection and transport of specimens, interrupted follow-up activities, and pilot study recruitment. To address these challenges, state programs implemented a wide variety of solutions to maintain the high standards of newborn screening. To address staffing issues, newborn screening programs, public health laboratories, and hospitals all cross-trained personnel, worked to manage staff stress, and established essential functions. Other solutions included working with courier companies to ensure the timely pick-up of specimen, creating educational materials for hospital staff, and the creation of hybrid recruitment models for pilot studies. Implementing the lessons discussed throughout this paper can help to prepare for the next public health emergencies to ensure that a program that interacts with millions of families every year and saves the lives of thousands of children every year is minimally impacted. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

      3. Body fat differences among US youth aged 8-19 by race and Hispanic origin, 2011-2018external icon
        Martin CB, Stierman B, Yanovski JA, Hales CM, Sarafrazi N, Ogden CL.
        Pediatr Obes. 2022 Feb 8:e12898.
        BACKGROUND: The association between body mass index (BMI) and adiposity differs by race/ethnicity. OBJECTIVE: To examine differences in adiposity by race/Hispanic origin among US youth and explore how those differences relate to differences in BMI using the most recent national data, including non-Hispanic Asian youth. METHODS: Weight, height and DXA-derived fat mass index (FMI) and percentage body fat (%BF) from 6923 youth 8-19 years in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2011-2018 were examined. Age-adjusted mean BMI, FMI and %BF were reported. Sex-specific linear regression models predicting %BF and FMI were adjusted for age, BMI category and BMI category*race/Hispanic origin interaction. RESULTS: %BF was highest among Hispanic males (28.2%) and females (35.7%). %BF was lower among non-Hispanic Black (23.9%) compared with non-Hispanic White (26.0%) and non-Hispanic Asian (26.6%) males. There was no difference between non-Hispanic Black females (32.7%) and non-Hispanic White (33.2%) or non-Hispanic Asian (32.7%) females. FMI was higher among Hispanic youth compared with non-Hispanic White youth. Among youth with underweight/healthy weight, predicted %BF and FMI were lower among non-Hispanic Black males (-2.8%; -0.5) and females (-2.0%; -0.3), compared with non-Hispanic White youth, and higher among Hispanic males (0.9%; 0.2) and females (2.0%; 0.5), while %BF but not FMI was higher among non-Hispanic Asian males (1.3%) and females (1.4%). Among females with obesity, non-Hispanic Asian females had lower %BF (-2.3%) and FMI (-1.7) than non-Hispanic White females. CONCLUSIONS: Differences in %BF and FMI by race/Hispanic origin were not consistent by BMI category among US youth in 2011-2018.

    • Nutritional Sciences
      1. Factors associated with anaemia among adolescent boys and girls 10-19 years old in Nepalexternal icon
        Ford ND, Bichha RP, Parajuli KR, Paudyal N, Joshi N, Whitehead RD, Chitekwe S, Mei Z, Flores-Ayala R, Adhikari DP, Rijal S, Jefferds ME.
        Matern Child Nutr. 2022 Jan;18 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):e13013.
        We used data from the 2016 Nepal National Micronutrient Status Survey to evaluate factors associated with anaemia (World Health Organization cut-points using altitude- and smoking-adjusted haemoglobin [Hb]) among nationally representative samples of adolescents 10-19 years. Hb, biomarkers of micronutrients, infection and inflammation were assessed from venous blood. Sociodemographic and household characteristics, dietary diversity, pica and recent morbidity were ascertained by interview. We explored bivariate relationships between candidate predictors and anaemia among boys (N = 967) and girls (N = 1,680). Candidate predictors with P < 0.05 in bivariate analyses were included in sex-specific multivariable logistic regression models. Anaemia prevalence was 20.6% (95% confidence interval [CI] [17.1, 24.1]) among girls and 10.9% (95% CI [8.2, 13.6]) among boys. Among girls, living in the Mountain and Hill ecological zones relative to the Terai (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 0.28, 95% CI [0.15, 0.52] and AOR 0.42, 95% CI [0.25, 0.73], respectively), ln ferritin (μg/L) (AOR 0.53, 95% CI [0.42, 0.68]) and ln retinol binding protein (RBP) (μmol/L) (AOR 0.08, 95% CI [0.04, 0.16]) were associated with reduced anaemia odds. Older age (age in years AOR 1.19, 95% CI [1.12, 1.27]) and Janajati ethnicity relative to the Muslim ethnicity (AOR 3.04, 95% CI [1.10, 8.36]) were associated with higher anaemia odds. Among boys, ln RBP [μmol/L] (AOR 0.25, 95% CI [0.10, 0.65]) and having consumed flesh foods (AOR 0.57, 95% CI [0.33, 0.99]) were associated with lower anaemia odds. Open defecation (AOR 2.36, 95% CI [1.15, 4.84]) and ln transferrin receptor [mg/L] (AOR 3.21, 95% CI [1.25, 8.23]) were associated with increased anaemia odds. Anaemia among adolescents might be addressed through effective public health policy and programs targeting micronutrient status, diet and sanitation.

    • Occupational Safety and Health
      1. Work-related fatigue: A hazard for workers experiencing disproportionate occupational risksexternal icon
        Cunningham TR, Guerin RJ, Ferguson J, Cavallari J.
        Am J Ind Med. 2022 Jan 27.
        BACKGROUND: Long working hours and fatigue are significant occupational safety and health (OSH) hazards for working populations who experience disproportionate risks of injury and illness. These groups include young or new workers, aging workers, contingent and temporary workers, immigrant and nonnative workers, female workers, minority workers, workers with low levels of education and lower socioeconomic status, and small business employees. An increasing focus on newer determinants of health in the workplace, such as health equity and work-life conflict, in worker populations at greater risk for injury or illness, provides an opportunity for researchers to address the causes and consequences of work-related fatigue in high-risk populations. METHODS: Articles in the OSH literature that addressed fatigue in higher-risk workers were identified by the authors or recommended by subject matter experts in workplace fatigue as part of a Working Hours, Sleep and Fatigue Forum. Additional articles were identified by searching for a combination of specific at-risk worker group titles (e.g., female workers, temporary workers) with fatigue or working hours. RESULTS: There remains a paucity of research specifically addressing working hours and fatigue among disproportionately at-risk worker populations. The literature reviewed in this paper suggests that several of these populations are at increased risk of fatigue due to multiple factors, such as irregular shifts, lack of access to fatigue management resources, and socioeconomic barriers. CONCLUSIONS: More research is needed to identify solutions to address fatigue in working populations who may be at greater risk for its consequences by virtue of adverse socioeconomic and related factors. Interventions to address work-related fatigue in specific at-risk worker groups should also consider the multiple and overlapping categories of risk within these populations.

      2. Evaluation of the fall protection of Type I industrial helmetsexternal icon
        Wu JZ, Pan CS, Cobb C, Moorehead A, Kau TY, Wimer BM.
        Ann Biomed Eng. 2022 Feb 5.
        The performance of Type I industrial helmets for fall protection is not required to be tested in standardized tests. The current study analyzed the fall protection performance of Type I industrial helmets and evaluated if the use of a chin strap and the suspension system tightness have any effect on protection performance. Head impact tests were performed using an instrumented manikin. There were 12 combinations of test conditions: with or without chin strap usage, three levels of suspension system tightness, and two impact surfaces. Four representative helmet models (two basic and two advanced models) were selected for the study. Impact tests without a helmet under all other applicable test conditions were used as a control group. There were four replicates for each test condition-a total of 192 impact tests with helmets and eight impact tests for the control group. The peak acceleration and the calculated head impact criteria (HIC) were used to evaluate shock absorption performance of the helmets. The results showed that all four helmet models demonstrated excellent performance for fall protection compared to the barehead control group. The fall protection performance of the advanced helmet models was substantially better than the basic helmet models. However, the effects of the use of chin straps and suspension system tightness on the helmets' fall protection performance were statistically not significant.

      3. Development of a thermal spray coating aerosol generator and inhalation exposure systemexternal icon
        Afshari AA, McKinney W, Cumpston JL, Leonard HD, Cumpston JB, Meighan TG, Jackson M, Friend S, Kodali V, Lee EG, Antonini JM.
        Toxicol Rep. 2022 ;9:126-135.
        Thermal spray coating involves spraying a product (oftentimes metal) that is melted by extremely high temperatures and then applied under pressure onto a surface. Large amounts of a complex metal aerosol (e.g., Fe, Cr, Ni, Zn) are formed during the process, presenting a potentially serious risk to the operator. Information about the health effects associated with exposure to these aerosols is lacking. Even less is known about the chemical and physical properties of these aerosols. The goal was to develop and test an automated thermal spray coating aerosol generator and inhalation exposure system that would simulate workplace exposures. An electric arc wire-thermal spray coating aerosol generator and exposure system was designed and separated into two areas: (1) an enclosed room where the spray coating occurs; (2) an exposure chamber with different measurement devices and controllers. The physicochemical properties of aerosols generated during electric arc wire-thermal spray coating using five different consumable wires were examined. The metal composition of each was determined by inductively coupled plasma-atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES), including two stainless-steel wires [PMET720 (82 % Fe, 13 % Cr); PMET731(66 % Fe, 26 % Cr)], two Ni-based wires [PMET876 (55 % Ni, 17 % Cr); PMET885 (97 % Ni)], and one Zn-based wire [PMET540 (99 % Zn)]. The particles generated regardless of composition were poorly soluble, complex metal oxides and mostly arranged as chain-like agglomerates and similar in size distribution as determined by micro-orifice uniform deposit impactor (MOUDI) and electrical low-pressure impactor (ELPI). To allow for continuous, sequential spray coating during a 4-hr exposure period, a motor rotated the metal pipe to be coated in a circular and up-and-down direction. In a pilot animal study, male Sprague-Dawley rats were exposed to aerosols (25 mg/m(3) × 4 h/d × 9 d) generated from electric arc wire- thermal spray coating using the stainless-steel PMET720 consumable wire. The targeted exposure chamber concentration was achieved and maintained during a 4-hr period. At 1 d after exposure, lung injury and inflammation were significantly elevated in the group exposed to the thermal spray coating aerosol compared to the air control group. The system was designed and constructed for future animal exposure studies to generate continuous metal spray coating aerosols at a targeted concentration for extended periods of time without interruption.

    • Program Evaluation
      1. Clinical outcomes of adults with diagnosed HIV living in ending the HIV epidemic priority areas, medical monitoring project, 2018external icon
        Chowdhury PP, Beer L, Crim SM, Bosh KA, Desamu-Thorpe RG, Shouse LR.
        Public Health Rep. 2022 Feb 9:333549221074339.
        OBJECTIVES: The Ending the HIV Epidemic (EHE) initiative prioritizes treatment and prevention efforts in counties where most new HIV diagnoses occur and states with substantial incidence of new HIV diagnoses in rural areas. Understanding the characteristics of adults with HIV living in EHE priority areas, and how these characteristics compare with adults with HIV living in non-EHE priority areas, can inform EHE efforts. METHODS: We analyzed data from the 2018 Medical Monitoring Project (MMP) to understand the characteristics of adults with HIV living in 36 of 48 EHE priority counties; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and 1 of 7 EHE priority states. We calculated weighted percentages of sociodemographic characteristics, behaviors, and clinical outcomes of adults with diagnosed HIV living in MMP EHE priority areas and compared them with characteristics of adults who did not live in MMP EHE priority areas using prevalence ratios (PRs) with predicted marginal means. RESULTS: Living in an MMP EHE priority area was more common among adults who were non-Hispanic Black or Hispanic, experienced homelessness, or were food insecure compared with adults who were non-Hispanic White (59.3% and 58.4% vs 41.0%), not experiencing homelessness (60.9% vs 51.9%), or not food insecure (59.8% vs 51.0%). Adults who lived in MMP EHE priority areas were significantly less likely to be adherent to their HIV medications (PR = 0.95; 95% CI, 0.91-0.99) and durably virally suppressed (PR = 0.94; 95% CI, 0.91-0.97), and more likely to miss scheduled appointments for HIV care (PR = 1.31; 95% CI, 1.10-1.56) than adults who did not live in MMP EHE priority areas. CONCLUSION: To increase viral suppression and reduce HIV transmission, it is essential to strengthen public health efforts to improve medication and appointment adherence in this population.

    • Public Health Law
      1. Global judicial opinions regarding government-issued COVID-19 mitigation measuresexternal icon
        Clodfelter CG, Caron S, Rosenfeld EL, Menon AN, Sasser A, Mercier EK, Brush CA.
        Health Secur. 2022 Feb 3.
        Laws play an important role in emergency response capacity. During the COVID-19 outbreak, experts have noted both a lack of law where it is needed and a problematic use of laws that exist. To address those challenges, policymakers revising public health emergency laws can examine how existing laws were used during the COVID-19 response to address problems that arose during their application. Judicial opinions can provide a source of data for this review. This study used legal epidemiology methods to perform an environmental scan of global judicial opinions, published from March 1 through August 31, 2020, from 23 countries, related to government-issued COVID-19 mitigation measures. The opinions were coded, and findings categorize the measures based on: (1) the World Health Organization's May 2020 publication, Overview of Public Health and Social Measures in the Context of COVID-19, and (2) related legal challenges brought in courts, including disputes about authority; conflicts of law; rationality, proportionality, or necessity; implementation; and enforcement. The findings demonstrate how judicial review of emergency measures has played a role in the COVID-19 response. In some cases, court rulings required mitigation measures to be amended or stopped. In others, court rulings required the government to issue a measure not yet in place. These findings provide examples for understanding issues related to the application of law during an emergency response.

    • Substance Use and Abuse
      1. Smoking cessation among U.S. adult smokers with and without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, 2018external icon
        Liu Y, Greenlund KJ, VanFrank B, Xu F, Lu H, Croft JB.
        Am J Prev Med. 2022 Feb 1.
        INTRODUCTION: More than 3 of 5 U.S. adults who have ever smoked cigarettes have quit. This study assesses the latest estimates of smoking cessation among U.S. adults with and without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who have ever smoked cigarettes (ever smokers). METHODS: Data from 161,233 ever smokers (12.8% with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) in the 2018 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System were analyzed in 2020. Weighted percentages of quit ratios (percentage of ever smokers who quit smoking), past-year quit attempts (≥1 day), and recent successful cessation (quit ≥6 months ago) by self-reported physician-diagnosed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease status were obtained from multivariable logistic regression analyses, with adjustment for sociodemographic characteristics, health risk behaviors, depression, and asthma. RESULTS: Adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who smoked had greater age-adjusted past-year quit attempts (68.8% vs 64.3%) but lower recent successful cessation (4.5% vs 5.8%) and quit ratio (53.2% vs 63.9%) than those without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. After adjusting for covariates, adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who smoked had a significantly higher percentage of past-year quit attempts but similar recent successful cessation and a significantly lower lifetime quit ratio than their counterparts without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that individuals with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who try to quit smoking may be less likely to succeed than those without chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Evidence-based treatments for smoking cessation remain an important component of a comprehensive approach to helping all adults to quit and are a particularly important element of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease management and care.

      2. An outbreak of HIV infection among people who inject drugs in Northeastern Massachusetts: findings and lessons learned from a medical record reviewexternal icon
        Randall LM, Dasgupta S, Day J, DeMaria A, Musolino J, John B, Cranston K, Buchacz K.
        BMC Public Health. 2022 Feb 8;22(1):257.
        BACKGROUND: We conducted a medical record review for healthcare utilization, risk factors, and clinical data among people who inject drugs (PWID) in Massachusetts to aid HIV outbreak response decision-making and strengthen public health practice. SETTING: Two large community health centers (CHCs) that provide HIV and related services in northeastern Massachusetts. METHODS: Between May and July 2018, we reviewed medical records for 88 people with HIV (PWH) connected to the outbreak. The review period included care received from May 1, 2016, through the date of review. Surveillance data were used to establish date of HIV diagnosis and assess viral suppression. RESULTS: Sixty-nine (78%) people had HIV infection diagnosed during the review period, including 10 acute infections. Persons had a median of 3 primary care visits after HIV diagnosis and zero before diagnosis. During the review period, 72% reported active drug or alcohol use, 62% were prescribed medication assisted treatment, and 41% were prescribed antidepressants. The majority (68, 77%) had a documented ART prescription. HIV viral suppression at < 200 copies/mL was more frequent (73%) than the overall across the State (65%); it did not correlate with any of the sociodemographic characteristics studied in our population. Over half (57%) had been hospitalized at least once during the review period, and 36% had a bacterial infection at hospitalization. CONCLUSIONS: Medical record review with a field investigation of an outbreak provided data about patterns of health care utilization and comorbidities not available from routine HIV surveillance or case interviews. Integration of HIV screening with treatment for HIV and SUD can strengthen prevention and care services for PWID in northeastern Massachusetts.

      3. Changes in Biomarkers of tobacco exposure among cigarette smokers transitioning to ENDS use: The Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Study, 2013–2015external icon
        Anic GM, Rostron BL, Hammad HT, van Bemmel DM, Valle-Pinero AY, Christensen CH, Erives G, Faulcon LM, Blount BC, Wang Y, Wang L, Bhandari D, Calafat AM, Kimmel HL, Everard CD, Compton WM, Edwards KC, Goniewicz ML, Wei B, Hyland A, Hatsukami DK, Hecht SS, Niaura RS, Borek N, Ambrose BK, Chang CM.
        International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2022 ;19(3).
        Limited data are available for how biomarkers of tobacco exposure (BOE) change when cigarette smokers transition to using electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS). Using biomarker data from Waves 1 (2013–2014) and 2 (2014–2015) of the PATH Study, we examined how mean BOE concentrations, including metabolites of nicotine, tobacco-specific nitrosamines (TSNA), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), and volatile organic compounds (VOCM) and metals, changed when 2475 adult smokers transitioned to using ENDS or quit tobacco products. Exclusive smokers who transitioned to dual use had a significant decrease in NNAL (4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanol), but not nicotine metabolites, most PAHs, metals, or VOCMs. Exclusive smokers who became dual users had significant reductions in total nicotine equivalents, NNAL, and 2CyEMA (acrylonitrile metabolite), but only in those who reduced cigarettes per day (CPD) by >=50%. Smokers who transitioned to exclusive ENDS use had significant reductions in most TSNAs, PAHs, and VOCMs; however, nicotine metabolites did not decrease in dual users who became exclusive ENDS users. Smokers who quit tobacco use had significant decreases in nicotine metabolites, all TSNAs, most PAHs, and most VOCMs. Cigarette smokers who became dual users did not experience significant reductions in most BOEs. Reductions were impacted by changes in CPD. However, transitioning from smoking to no tobacco or exclusive ENDS use was associated with reduced exposure to most BOEs measured. Future analyses could incorporate additional waves of PATH data and examine changes in biomarker exposure by ENDS device type and CPD. © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

      4. Prevalence of self-reported prescription opioid use and illicit drug use among U.S. Adults: NHANES 2005-2016external icon
        Gu JK, Allison P, Grimes Trotter A, Charles LE, Ma CC, Groenewold M, Andrew ME, Luckhaupt SE.
        J Occup Environ Med. 2022 Jan 1;64(1):39-45.
        OBJECTIVE: To estimate the self-reported prevalence of prescription opioid use and illicit drug use in the United States. METHODS: Self-reported prescription opioid use and illicit drug use (mostly nonopioid) were obtained for adults and adult workers (NHANES 2005-2016). RESULTS: Prevalence (95% CI) of prescription opioid use was 6.5% (6.0-7.0) (adults) and 4.1% (3.7-4.5) (workers). Prevalence of illicit drug use was 9.5% (8.8-10.1) (adults) and 10.2% (9.4-11.1) (workers). Among occupations, prevalence of prescription opioid use was highest in personal care (6.5%; 4.1-10.4) and healthcare practitioners (5.9%; 3.8-9.0); for illicit drug use, construction/extraction (18.0%; 15.1-21.3) and food preparation (15.8%; 12.5-19.7). CONCLUSION: The prevalence of prescription opioid use was elevated among some occupations. Judicious prescription strategies and targeted interventions are both needed. The prevalence of illicit drug use among certain occupational groups suggests the need to ensure access to therapy.


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