Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases

Description

  • Impact factor
    5.03
  • 5-year impact
    4.61
  • Cited half-life
    4.60
  • Immediacy index
    0.84
  • Eigenfactor
    0.01
  • Article influence
    1.61
  • ISSN
    1473-6527

Publications in this journal

  • Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 08/2014;
  • Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 08/2014; 27(4):336-341.
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    ABSTRACT: The management of infection in pregnancy aims mainly at improving the diagnosis and prognosis of congenital infections. Over 400 publications have dealt with this issue over the last 2 years, taking advantage of progress made not only in the epidemiological knowledge of infections but also neonatal treatment and prenatal diagnosis and interventions. The focus remains largely on viral and parasitic infections, namely cytomegalovirus (CMV) and toxoplasmosis, with the appearance of influenza as part of recent and severe outbreaks. The prevalence of CMV infection is stable. The prediction of foetal infection from primary maternal infection is becoming more accurate and therapeutic approaches are promising, including the development of a vaccine in the near future. The prevalence of toxoplasmosis is decreasing markedly in Europe weakening the effect of preventive measures and questioning the rationale for screening. In addition, the efficacy of prenatal treatment is still under scrutiny, although no appropriate randomized controlled trial (RCT) has been undertaken. Accurate dating of maternal primary infection is key to prenatal management including foetal and perinatal surveillance and therapy. Heightened prenatal surveillance following influenza infection in early pregnancy is warranted by an apparent increased risk of nonchromosomal congenital malformations in large epidemiological studies, likely as an effect of maternal hyperthermia.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 06/2014; 27(3):251-257.
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    ABSTRACT: Both the diagnosis and treatment of Mycoplasma pneumoniae infections in children are currently facing two main challenges: a relatively high carriage in asymptomatic children, and a worldwide increase in macrolide-resistant M. pneumoniae (MRMP). This review focuses on the scientific and clinical implications of these crucial issues. Recent studies have indicated that the prevalence of M. pneumoniae in the upper respiratory tract is similar among asymptomatic, healthy children and children with a symptomatic respiratory tract infection, and that current diagnostic procedures for M. pneumoniae are unable to differentiate between bacterial carriage and infection. It is therefore possible that the burden of M. pneumoniae-associated disease is overestimated. Another phenomenon that has an important impact on the treatment of M. pneumoniae infections is the rapid worldwide emergence of MRMP isolates. The current diagnostic procedures for M. pneumoniae cannot discern between bacterial carriage and infection in a clinically relevant time frame. It is therefore imperative that these procedures be modified such as to unambiguously detect symptomatic M. pneumoniae infections. Moreover, the emergence of MRMP necessitates the application of methods to detect macrolide resistance as well as the implementation of restrictive policies regarding the use of macrolides.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Childhood multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis is an emerging disease with increasing numbers being recognized. This review presents recent developments in childhood MDR tuberculosis. New molecular-based diagnostic tests, although not optimal, have reduced the difficulty in confirming the diagnosis of MDR tuberculosis in children. However, the importance of making a diagnosis of probable MDR tuberculosis has been reaffirmed by contact tracing studies showing 80-90% of child contacts of MDR tuberculosis cases who develop disease have MDR tuberculosis themselves. Prevention of MDR tuberculosis in child contacts with appropriate preventive treatment regimens is supported by new observational data and deserves further study. When diagnosed and treated appropriately, outcomes for MDR tuberculosis and even extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis in children are good, despite limited pharmacokinetic data on second-line drugs. Novel anti-tuberculosis drugs and regimens are becoming available and should be studied in children for dose-finding and safety. Recording and reporting of MDR tuberculosis in children are frequently poor, leading to inaccurate estimates of disease burden and suboptimal resource planning. Rapid diagnosis and appropriate treatment results in good outcomes in the majority of children with MDR tuberculosis. Additional research on optimal diagnosis, prevention and treatment of MDR tuberculosis in children remains a high priority.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Neonates in intensive care are more susceptible to sepsis. Infection is commonly acquired via the transcutaneous portal. It is necessary to identify the most effective yet safest topical antiseptics for use in neonates to reduce nosocomial sepsis. Recent national surveys indicate that a wide range of topical antiseptic preparations are used in the neonatal nursery. There are very few comparative studies in neonates and no robust evidence in favour of any particular antiseptic. There are significant safety and potential toxicity issues for neonates with all the commonly used antiseptics, particularly in very small immature babies. There are no convincing roles for routine application of emollient creams on the skin, topical antiseptics on the umbilical stump, or maternal vaginal washes with chlorhexidine for the prevention of neonatal infection. Large multicentre trials are needed to determine the optimal antiseptic to use for neonates undergoing intensive care, especially for extremely preterm infants.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Antimicrobial resistance towards conventional antibiotics is a serious problem for modern medicine and for our society. Multidrug-resistant bacteria are very difficult to treat and treatment options have begun to run out. Here, we summarize the newest studies of drug development using cationic antimicrobial peptides as lead molecules for novel antimicrobial drugs. A new development is the use of antimicrobial peptides not only as direct antimicrobial lead structures but also using their ability to influence the immune system. Such approaches can be used to develop drugs that influence the immune system in a unique way, supporting specific branches of immune cells in order to clear infection. Applying such an 'immune boost' would also minimize the danger of new resistance emerging in bacteria. In addition, searching for and testing substances that trigger the production of host antimicrobial peptides is still ongoing and opens up a totally new avenue for the use of antimicrobial peptides against infections. Currently, more than 10 clinical trials, phase 2 or 3, using antimicrobial peptides are in progress or have been recently completed. Multidrug resistance is an urgent problem for modern medicine and novel antimicrobials are needed. Despite some drawbacks, antimicrobial peptides seem now to appear more numerous in clinical trials, indicating the success in developing peptides into novel therapeutics. This can be critical especially for neonates and children, as treatment options for infections with Gram-negatives in neonatal ICUs are becoming rare.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi) is a human-specific mucosal pathogen and one of the most common causes of bacterial infections in children and patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It is also frequently found in polymicrobial superinfections. Great strides have recently been made in the understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying NTHi pathogenesis. By using new methodology, such as experimental human colonization models and whole-genome approaches, investigators have shed light upon the various strategies of NTHi that are involved in pathogenesis. These include the escape of the mucociliary elevator, evasion of host immunity, survival in environments with scarce nutrients, and finally participation in polymicrobial infections. Lipooligosaccharide branching, proteinous adhesins, metabolic adaption to nutrient availability and many scavenging systems are implicated in these processes. Interestingly, genome-based studies comparing virulent and commensal strains have identified many hypothetical proteins as virulence determinants, suggesting that much regarding the molecular pathogenesis of NTHi remains to be solved. NTHi is an opportunistic pathogen and highly specialized colonizer of the human respiratory tract that has developed intricate mechanisms to establish growth and survival in the human host. Continued research is needed to further elucidate NTHi host-pathogen and pathogen-pathogen interactions.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Increasing disease caused by beta-haemolytic streptococci indicates the need for improved understanding of pathogenesis. Streptococcus pyogenes, or group A Streptococcus (GAS), causes significant disease worldwide. The closely related Streptococcus dysgalactiae subspecies equisimilis (SDSE) is increasingly recognized as causing a similar disease spectrum. Whole-genome sequencing applied to the study of outbreaks may reveal factors that contribute to pathogenesis and changes in epidemiology. The role of quorum sensing in biofilm formation, and interspecies communication with other streptococci, is discussed. GAS has evolved multiple mechanisms to evade the humoral arm of innate immunity, including complement, which is well known in protecting the host from bacteria, and the coagulation-fibrinolytic system, which is increasingly recognized as an innate immune effector. Molecular biology has enhanced our understanding of the intricate balance of host-pathogen interactions that result in clearance or establishment of invasive streptococcal infection. Although the skin and oropharynx remain the usual ecological niche of GAS and SDSE, occasionally the bacteria find themselves within deeper tissues and blood. Recent research has armed us with better knowledge of bacterial adaptations to this alternative environment. However, the challenge is to translate this knowledge into clinical practice, through the development of novel therapeutic options and ultimately a vaccine against GAS.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 04/2014; 27(2):155-64.
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    ABSTRACT: The proportion of Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates with reduced susceptibility to extended-spectrum cephalosporins (ESCs) has increased rapidly since 2006. Clinicians, researchers, and public health officials need to be prepared for the possibility of an era of untreatable gonorrhea. This review focuses on the evidence for current gonorrhea treatment recommendations, potential future treatment options, and other methods to control gonorrhea. In addition to an increase in isolates with decreased susceptibility to ESCs, there have been reported treatment failures to both cefixime and ceftriaxone. In response, some countries have increased the recommended cephalosporin dose, and most now recommend dual therapy with an ESC and azithromycin. The pharynx has been implicated as a site for acquiring resistance through transformation with commensal Neisseria species or induced resistance through subtherapeutic antimicrobial levels. Thus, appropriate screening of the pharynx and treatment with a regimen that eradicates gonorrhea from the pharynx is necessary. At present, several studies are evaluating various novel treatment regimens in preparation for an era of untreatable gonorrhea. Screening for asymptomatic infections, maintaining culture capacity to monitor antimicrobial resistance, treating with ceftriaxone and azithromycin, and ensuring that all sexual partners are treated are among the best strategies to control gonorrhea in the current clime.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The aim is to evaluate basic mechanisms, prevalence, risk factors, outcomes, and potential treatments of cardiovascular events (CVEs) in patients with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP). In this review, we present a new model to evaluate the pathophysiology of cardiac disease in patients with pneumonia based on plaque-related events, such as acute myocardial infarction, versus plaque-unrelated events, such as arrhythmias and heart failure. CAP increases the risk for both plaque-related and plaque-unrelated events with an absolute rate of CVE across different cohorts that varies broadly from 10 to 30%. These complications may happen among both ambulatory patients and inpatients, either on admission or during hospitalization, and/or after discharge. CVEs represent a major cause for increased mortality in CAP patients, contributing to more than 30% of deaths at long-term follow-up. From a clinical perspective, especially during the first 24 h after hospitalization, CAP patients should be tested for the probability to have or develop during hospitalization a cardiac event. From a research point of view, there is an urgent need to prospectively evaluate cardioprotective interventions.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 03/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Despite concerns regarding efficacy and tolerability, vancomycin continues to be the standard treatment for skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs) when β-lactam antimicrobials cannot be used. This review sought to establish the role of both old and new alternatives to vancomycin. Methods for achieving optimization of vancomycin therapy are also explored. Several meta-analyses have demonstrated poorer clinical outcomes when the vancomycin minimum inhibitory concentration approaches the breakpoint of 2 μg/ml. Higher doses should be utilized to optimize pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics when higher volumes of distribution occur (e.g. sepsis).Newer agents with established noninferiority to vancomycin include the oxazolidinones linezolid and tedizolid, the lipopeptide daptomycin, the anti-meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus cephalosporin ceftaroline and the glycylcycline tigecycline. Linezolid is thus far the only agent that has been shown to be associated with better clinical and microbiological cure rates. Ceftaroline and tigecycline are broad-spectrum agents best reserved for polymicrobial infections (e.g. diabetic foot infections). When vancomycin is used for the treatment of SSTIs, maximizing the dose should be performed to improve efficacy. Cost is often the main limiting factor with regard to the newer agents, but their suitability for outpatient antimicrobial therapy may counteract this.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 02/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Apparently immunocompetent critically ill patients represent an increasing population at risk for invasive pulmonary aspergillosis (IPA). The current review gives an update on the epidemiology, diagnosis, and management of IPA in the ICU. Patients without apparent severe immunosuppression (e.g. chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, decompensated liver disease, etc.) represent the majority of ICU IPA cases. IPA diagnosis is problematic and the true incidence of IPA is difficult to be estimated because of the nonspecific clinical presentation. A user-friendly clinical diagnostic algorithm for IPA is valuable, particularly through a high negative predictive value. IPA carries a poor prognosis and has an important impact on hospital costs. Timely diagnosis and prompt administration of appropriate treatment may improve the outcomes. Intravenous voriconazole is the recommended primary IPA treatment, but liposomal amphotericin B also has clinical utility. Voriconazole presents bioavailability and toxicity issues, and drug level monitoring is advocated. Caspofungin or antifungal combinations are recommended as salvage therapy. A high level of suspicion in critically ill patients presenting with Aspergillus-positive respiratory tract cultures or nonresolving pulmonary infection may lead to earlier IPA diagnosis. Dosage individualization may decrease treatment discontinuation and improve clinical efficacy.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 02/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Acute bacterial skin and skin structure infection (ABSSSI) is a common and significant indication for antibiotic treatment. The microbial aetiology is becoming more resistant to available antibiotics and the treatment of patients is additionally challenged by extremes of age, obesity, diabetes and other co-morbidities. This review examines recent antimicrobial developments. In many parts of the world, multidrug-resistant (MDR) staphylococci are the predominant cause of ABSSSI in both the community and in hospital. Increasing resistance in Gram-negative organisms presents problems in the management of surgical-site infections. Most new antibiotics have been developed to treat MDR Gram-positive bacteria and there are few agents to treat infections caused by MDR Gram-negative pathogens. A number of novel agents are available clinically, with other agents of related chemical structure under development. There are no entirely new classes of antibiotics. Maintaining the efficacy of antimicrobial treatment require effective antibiotic stewardship, good infection prevention and the development of further new antibiotics.
    Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases 02/2014;