Herman Goossens

Memorial University of Newfoundland, Saint John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

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Publications (530)2897.13 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Although the earliest-rudimentary-attempts at exploiting the immune system for cancer therapy can be traced back to the late 18th Century, it was not until the past decade that cancer immunotherapeutics have truly entered mainstream clinical practice. Given their potential to stimulate both adaptive and innate antitumor immune responses, dendritic cells (DCs) have come under intense scrutiny in recent years as pharmacological tools for cancer immunotherapy. Conceptually, the clinical effectiveness of this form of active immunotherapy relies on the completion of three critical steps: 1) the DCs used as immunotherapeutic vehicles must properly activate the antitumor immune effector cells of the host, 2) these immune effector cells must be receptive to stimulation by the DCs and be competent to mediate their antitumor effects, which 3) requires overcoming the various immune-inhibitory mechanisms used by the tumor cells. In this review, following a brief overview of the pivotal milestones in the history of cancer immunotherapy, we will introduce the reader to the basic immunobiological and pharmacological principles of active cancer immunotherapy using DCs. We will then discuss how current research is trying to define the optimal parameters for each of the above steps to realize the full clinical potential of DC therapeutics. Given its high suitability for immune interventions, acute myeloid leukemia was chosen here to showcase the latest research trends driving the field of DC-based cancer immunotherapy. Copyright © 2015 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.
    Pharmacological reviews 10/2015; 67(4):731-753. DOI:10.1124/pr.114.009456 · 18.55 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Currently available point-of-care (POC) diagnostic tests for managing urinary tract infections (UTIs) in general practice are limited by poor performance characteristics, and laboratory culture generally provides results only after a few days. This laboratory evaluation compared the analytic performance of the POC UK Flexicult™ (Statens Serum Institut) (SSI) urinary kit for quantification, identification and antibiotic susceptibility testing and routine UK National Health Service (NHS) urine processing to an advanced urine culture method. Two hundred urine samples routinely submitted to the Public Health Wales Microbiology Laboratory were divided and: (1) analysed by routine NHS microbiological tests as per local laboratory standard operating procedures, (2) inoculated onto the UK Flexicult™ SSI urinary kit and (3) spiral plated onto Colorex Orientation UTI medium (E&O Laboratories Ltd). The results were evaluated between the NHS and Flexicult™ methods, and discordant results were compared to the spiral plating method. The UK Flexicult™ SSI urinary kit was compared to routine NHS culture for identification of a pure or predominant uropathogen at ≥10(5) cfu/mL, with a positive discordancy rate of 13.5 % and a negative discordancy rate of 3 %. The sensitivity and specificity were 86.7 % [95 % confidence interval (CI) 73.8-93.7] and 82.6 % (95 % CI 75.8-87.7), respectively. The UK Flexicult™ SSI urinary kit was comparable to routine NHS urine processing in identifying microbiologically positive UTIs in this laboratory evaluation. However, the number of false-positive samples could lead to over-prescribing of antibiotics in clinical practice. The Flexicult™ SSI kit could be useful as a POC test for UTIs in primary care but further pragmatic evaluations are necessary.
    European Journal of Clinical Microbiology 08/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10096-015-2460-4 · 2.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Valid clinical predictors of influenza in patients presenting with lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI) symptoms would provide adequate patient information and reassurance. Assessing the validity of an existing diagnostic model (Flu Score) to detect influenza in LRTI patients. A European diagnostic study recruited 1801 adult primary care patients with LRTI-like symptoms existing ≤7 days between October and April 2007-2010. History and physical examination findings were recorded and nasopharyngeal swabs taken. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for influenza A/B was performed as reference test. Diagnostic accuracy of the Flu Score (1× onset <48 hours + 2× myalgia + 1× chills or sweats + 2× fever and cough) was expressed as area under the curve (AUC), calibration slopes and likelihood ratios (LRs). A total of 273 patients (15%) had influenza on PCR. The AUC of the Flu Score during winter months was 0.66 [95% CI (95% confidence internal) 0.63-0.70]. During peak influenza season, both influenza prevalence (24%) and AUC were higher [0.71 (95% CI 0.66-0.76], but calibration remained poor. The Flu Score assigned 64% of the patients as 'low-risk' (10% had influenza, LR - 0.6). About 12% were classified as 'high risk' of whom 32% had influenza (LR + 2.7). During peak influenza season, 60% and 14% of patients were classified as low and high risk, respectively, with influenza prevalences being 14% (LR - 0.5) and 50% (LR + 3.2). The Flu-Score attributes a small subgroup of patients with a high influenza risk (prevalence 32%). However, clinical usefulness is limited because this group is small and the association between predicted and observed risks is poor. Considerable diagnostic imprecision remains when it comes to differentiating those with influenza on clinical grounds from the many other causes of LRTI in primary care. New point of care tests are required that accurately, rapidly and cost effectively detect influenza in patients with respiratory tract symptoms in primary care. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
    Family Practice 06/2015; DOI:10.1093/fampra/cmv039 · 1.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI) in Vietnam began in 1981 and reached a 87% national coverage rate in 1987. To investigate the vaccination coverage and trends in time of the EPI in Vietnam, two vaccine coverage cluster surveys have been conducted in 2003 and 2009. Information on EPI-vaccine coverage in children (aged 0-23 months - 7 years of age), in women of childbearing age and in pregnant women, was collected through '30 cluster surveys' in 2003 and 2009 (according to the World Health Organization (WHO) methodology) and through routine annual EPI coverage reports for the period 2001-2008. By comparing both cluster survey studies with each other, as well as with routinely collected data, we aim to improve future evaluation of the vaccination coverage in Vietnam and deduce recommendations for the immunization program. According to both methods, the national targets were reached for most of the vaccines: over 90% of children are fully immunized by 1 year of age, 80% Tetanus Toxoid 2 Plus (TT2+) coverage is reached for pregnant women, and 90% TT2+ for childbearing aged women. The cluster surveys identified higher coverage rates compared to the routinely reported data in some provinces regarding the percentage of fully immunized children by the age of 1 year, and confirmed a low coverage rate for hepatitis B birth dose vaccination in all surveyed sites. Both methods of coverage assessment suggest that national targets are reached, for most but not all vaccines and not in all regions. Managing stock pile issues, addressing safety issues and tailoring policy for remote areas, are important elements to maintain and further improve these coverage figures.
    Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics 05/2015; 11(6). DOI:10.1080/21645515.2015.1032487 · 3.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The contribution of natural killer (NK) cells to the treatment efficacy of dendritic cell (DC)-based cancer vaccines is being increasingly recognized. Much current efforts to optimize this form of immunotherapy are therefore geared towards harnessing the NK cell-stimulatory ability of DCs. In this study, we investigated whether generation of human monocyte-derived DCs with interleukin (IL)-15 followed by activation with a Toll-like receptor stimulus endows these DCs, commonly referred to as "IL-15 DCs", with the capacity to stimulate NK cells. In a head-to-head comparison with "IL-4 DCs" used routinely for clinical studies, IL-15 DCs were found to induce a more activated, cytotoxic effector phenotype in NK cells, in particular in the CD56bright NK cell subset. With the exception of GM-CSF, no significant enhancement of cytokine/chemokine secretion was observed following co-culture of NK cells with IL-15 DCs. IL-15 DCs, but not IL-4 DCs, promoted NK cell tumoricidal activity towards both NK-sensitive and NK-resistant targets. This effect was found to require cell-to-cell contact and to be mediated by DC surface-bound IL-15. This study shows that DCs can express a membrane-bound form of IL-15 through which they enhance NK cell cytotoxic function. The observed lack of membrane-bound IL-15 on "gold-standard" IL-4 DCs and their consequent inability to effectively promote NK cell cytotoxicity may have important implications for the future design of DC-based cancer vaccine studies.
    PLoS ONE 05/2015; 10(5):e0123340. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0123340 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background Herpes zoster (HZ) is caused by VZV reactivation that is facilitated by a declined immunity against varicella-zoster virus (VZV), but also occurs in immunocompetent individuals. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is associated with immunosenescence meaning that VZV-specific T-cells could be less responsive. Objectives This study aimed to determine whether CMV infection could be a risk factor for the development of HZ. Study design CMV IgG serostatus was determined in stored serum samples from previously prospectively recruited ambulatory adult HZ patients in the UK (N = 223) in order to compare the results with those from UK population samples (N = 1545) by means of a logistic regression (controlling for age and gender). Furthermore, we compared the UK population CMV seroprevalence with those from population samples from other countries (from Belgium (N1 = 1741, N2 = 576), USA (N = 5572) and Australia (N = 2080)). Furthermore, CMV IgG titers could be compared between UK HZ patients and Belgium N2 population samples because the same experimental set-up for analysis was used. Results We found UK ambulatory HZ patients to have a higher CMV seroprevalence than UK population samples (OR 1.56 [1.11 2.19]). CMV IgG seropositivity was a significant risk factor for HZ in the UK (OR 3.06 [1.32 7.04]. Furthermore, high CMV IgG titers (exceeding the upper threshold) were less abundant in CMV-seropositive Belgian N2 population samples than in CMV-seropositive UK HZ patients (OR 0.51 [0.31 0.82]. We found CMV-seroprevalence to increase faster with age in the UK than in other countries (P < 0.05). Conclusions We conclude that CMV IgG seropositivity is associated with HZ. This finding could add to the growing list of risk factors for HZ.
    Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics 04/2015; 11(6). DOI:10.1080/21645515.2015.1037999 · 3.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Preclinical animal studies involving intracerebral (stem) cell grafting are gaining popularity in many laboratories due to the reported beneficial effects of cell grafting on various diseases or traumata of the central nervous system (CNS). In this chapter, we describe a histological workflow to characterize and quantify cellular events following neural and fibroblast(-like) stem cell grafting in healthy and demyelinated CNS tissue. First, we provide standardized protocols to isolate and culture eGFP+ neural and fibroblast(-like) stem cells from embryonic mouse tissue. Second, we describe flow cytometric procedures to determine cell viability, eGFP transgene expression, and the expression of different stem cell lineage markers. Third, we explain how to induce reproducible demyelination in the CNS of mice by means of cuprizone administration, a validated mouse model for human multiple sclerosis. Fourth, the technical procedures for cell grafting in the CNS are explained in detail. Finally, an optimized and validated workflow for the quantitative histological analysis of cell graft survival and endogenous astroglial and microglial responses is provided.
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    03/2015; 4. DOI:10.1016/j.nmni.2015.01.001
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    Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 03/2015; DOI:10.1093/jac/dkv064 · 5.44 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective was to study changes in the faecal microbiota of patients with uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTIs) treated with nitrofurantoin and of non-treated healthy controls using 16S rRNA analysis. Serial stool samples were collected from patients receiving nitrofurantoin treatment at different timepoints [before treatment (day 1; T1), within 48 h of end of treatment (days 5-15; T2) and 28 days after treatment (days 31-43; T3)], as well as from healthy controls. Direct DNA extraction (PowerSoil DNA Isolation Kit, MoBio Laboratories, Carlsbad, CA, USA) from stool samples was followed by pyrosequencing (454 GS FLX Titanium) of the V3-V5 region of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene. Among UTI patients, mean proportions of the Actinobacteria phylum increased by 19.6% in the first follow-up sample (T2) in comparison with the pretreatment baseline stool sample (T1) (P = 0.026). However, proportions of Actinobacteria reversed to 'normal' pre-antibiotic levels, with a mean difference of 1.0% compared with baseline proportions, in the second follow-up sample (T3). The increase in Actinobacteria was specifically due to an increase in the Bifidobacteriaceae family (Bifidobacterium genus), which constituted 81.0% (95% CI ±7.4%) of this phylum. No significant impact was observed other than a temporary increase in the beneficial Bifidobacterium genus following nitrofurantoin treatment, which supports its reintroduction into clinical use. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
    Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 03/2015; DOI:10.1093/jac/dkv062 · 5.44 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to perform a multinational survey of patients' colonization by metallo-β-lactamase (MBL)-producing Enterobacteriaceae, including their molecular characterization. Patients in 18 hospital units across Europe and Israel (n = 17 945) were screened between mid-2008 and mid-2011. MBL-producing isolates were typed by PFGE and MLST. MBL genes were amplified and sequenced within their integrons. Plasmids with MBL genes were analysed by nuclease S1 plus hybridization profiling, mating and transformation assays, and by PCR-based replicon typing. Ninety-one patients in nine centres (six countries), including 62 patients in two Greek ICUs, carried 94 non-duplicate MBL-producing organisms. Klebsiella pneumoniae isolates from Greece dominated (n = 57) and belonged mainly to ST147, ST36 and ST383. All but one of the isolates expressed VIM-1-type MBLs. Isolates of Greek origins produced five enzymes, including new VIM-39, encoded by class 1 integrons of four types. In-e541-like elements prevailed, comprising six variants located on IncR, IncFIIK, IncR + FIIK, IncR + A/C or non-typeable plasmids. The other group were new In4873 and In4863, being the first In416-like elements identified in Greece, which were present on IncA/C or non-typeable plasmids. Isolates from other countries produced only VIM-1 and the major integron was In916, identified in 16 organisms from France, Italy and Spain. In916 was carried by four plasmid types, including IncA/C, IncFIIK and IncHI2. Other integrons included a new element, In3103, in Spain and In110 identified only in Latvia. This study provided fully comparable data on the occurrence and molecular characteristics of VIM-producing Enterobacteriaceae in a group of hospital units across Europe, documenting recent changes in their epidemiology. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
    Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 03/2015; DOI:10.1093/jac/dkv055 · 5.44 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: Estimate the efficacy of amoxicillin for acute uncomplicated lower-respiratory-tract infection (LRTI) in primary care and demonstrate the use of randomisation-based efficacy estimators. Design: Secondary analysis of a two-arm individually-randomised placebo-controlled trial. Setting: Primary care practices in 12 European countries. Participants: Patients aged 18 or older consulting with an acute LRTI in whom pneumonia was not suspected by the clinician. Interventions: Amoxicillin (two 500 mg tablets three times a day for 7 days) or matched placebo. Main outcome measures: Clinician-rated symptom severity between days 2-4; new/worsening symptoms and presence of side effects at 4-weeks. Adherence was captured using self-report and tablet counts. Results: 2061 participants were randomised to the amoxicillin or placebo group. On average, 88% of the prescribed amoxicillin was taken. The original analysis demonstrated small increases in both benefits and harms from amoxicillin. Minor improvements in the benefits of amoxicillin were observed when an adjustments for adherence were made (mean difference in symptom severity -0.08, 95% CI -0.17 to 0.01, OR for new/worsening symptoms 0.81, 95% CI 0.66 to 0.98) as well as minor increases in harms (OR for side effects 1.32, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.57). Conclusions: Adherence to amoxicillin was high, and the findings from the original analysis were robust to non-adherence. Participants consulting to primary care with an acute uncomplicated LRTI can on average expect minor improvements in outcome from taking amoxicillin. However, they are also at an increased risk of experiencing side effects.
    BMJ Open 03/2015; 5(3):e006160. DOI:10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006160 · 2.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background. The results obtained from various point-of-care (POC) test devices for estimating C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in a laboratory setting differ when compared to a laboratory reference test. We aimed to determine whether such differences meaningfully affect the accuracy and added diagnostic value in predicting radiographic pneumonia in adults presenting with acute cough in primary care. Methods. A nested case control study of adult patients presenting with acute cough in 12 different European countries (the Genomics to combat Resistance against Antibiotics in Community-acquired LRTI in Europe [GRACE] Network). Venous blood samples from 100 patients with and 100 patients without pneumonia were tested with five different POC CRP tests and a laboratory analyzer. Single test accuracy values and the added value of CRP to symptoms and signs were calculated. Results. Single test accuracy values showed similar results for all five POC CRP tests and the laboratory analyzer. The area under the curve of the different POC CRP tests and the laboratory analyzer (range 0.79-0.80) were all comparable and higher than the clinical model without CRP (0.70). Multivariable odds ratios were the same (1.2) for all CRP tests. Conclusions. Five POC CRP test devices and the laboratory analyzer performed with similar accuracy in detecting pneumonia both as single test, and when used in addition to clinical findings. Variability in results obtained from standard CRP laboratory and POC test devices do not translate into clinically relevant differences when used for prediction of pneumonia in patients with acute cough in primary care.
    Scandinavian Journal of Clinical and Laboratory Investigation 02/2015; 75(4):1-5. DOI:10.3109/00365513.2015.1006136 · 2.01 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In order to improve antimicrobial (AM) use, a policy of providing technical and financial support to AM management teams (AMTs) was rolled out in all Belgian hospitals between 2002 and 2008. We aimed to analyse the association of this policy with AM use for the two indications accounting for the largest number of patients receiving AM: prophylaxis for major lower limb orthopaedic surgery and pneumonia. We used patient-level data routinely collected in all Belgian acute care hospitals between 1999 and 2010. We modelled trends for selected quality indicators (QIs) using the year of AMT implementation in each hospital as the main 'change point', with fine-tuned case-mix adjustment. Of all admissions for lower limb orthopaedic surgery, and pneumonia between 1999 and 2010, 90% (325 094) and 95% (327 635), respectively, were found eligible for analyses. The surgery QI was defined as: cefazolin, dose in the expected range, and no use of other AM. For pneumonia, QIs were: ratio of oral/parenteral defined daily doses (DDD, O/P QI), and mean number of DDD minus penicillin, per 100 days of hospitalisation (DDD QI). Between 1999 and 2010, the surgery QI improved from 59% to 71%, the O/P QI from 0.72 to 0.97, and the DDD QI from 96 to 64. Heterogeneity between hospitals was high. Overall, no association was found with the year of implementation of the AMT. Improvements have been observed but could not be related at the national level to the policy under study. However, these results cannot be extrapolated to other QIs for AM use in hospitals. Our findings do not question the need for AMT, nor the need for continuation of AMT funding. Several recommendations can be made in order to make the best of Belgium's unique political and financial commitments in that field. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.
    BMJ Open 02/2015; 5(2):e006916. DOI:10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006916 · 2.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives Obesity is considered as one of the most important public health problems of our times. The last few decades the prevalence of obesity, especially among children and adolescents, has increased dramatically worldwide. The aim of our study was to determine whether the composition of the gut microbiota is related to obesity in childhood. Methods A cross-sectional study was set-up to examine the gut microbiota using faecal samples from 22 obese children and 33 non-obese children aged 6 – 16 years. The microbial composition in the faecal samples was analyzed by quantitative plating for Staphylococcus spp., Bacteroides fragilis group, Clostridium spp., Lactobacillus spp. and for Bifidobacterium spp.; matrix-assisted laser-desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) for identification of species of the Bacteroides fragilis group and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) to determine the number of Staphylococcus spp., Bacteroides-Prevotella-Porphyromonas group, Clostridium coccoides-Eubacterium rectale group, Clostridium leptum subgroup, Lactobacillus spp., and Bifidobacterium spp. For statistical analysis, the BMI z-score was used as dependent variable thereby correcting for age and gender. A P-value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results Both quantitative plating and qRT-PCR showed that the faecal concentration of the Bacteroides fragilis group in obese children was significantly lower than in non-obese children (P = 0.017 and 0.018, respectively). Additionally, MALDI-TOF MS analysis demonstrated that obese children were colonized more frequently with B. fragilis than non-obese children (19.18% and 7.33%, P = 0.039) whereas colonization with B. vulgatis was significantly higher in non-obese children compared to obese children (8.14% and 18.91%, P = 0.016). Furthermore, B. fragilis was significantly positively correlated to the BMI z-score (P = 0.03). Higher colonization with B. fragilis could therefore be associated with an increase in weight. The microbiota of obese children was also associated with a higher Firmicutes/Bacteroides ratio (P = 0.02). Conclusions Significant differences were found in the composition of the fecal microbiota of obese and non-obese children. These results indicate that changes in the gut microbiota during childhood and adolescence could lead to the development of obesity and that the gut microbiota could be an additional risk factor for obese-prone children.
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    ABSTRACT: Transplantation of neural stem cells (NSC) in diseased or injured brain tissue is widely studied as a potential treatment for various neurological pathologies. However, effective cell replacement therapy relies on the intrinsic capacity of cellular grafts to overcome hypoxic and/or immunological barriers after transplantation. In this context, it is hypothesized that structural support for grafted NSC will be of utmost importance. With this study, we present a novel decellularization protocol for 1.5 mm thick mouse brain sections, resulting in the generation of acellular three-dimensional (3D) brain sections. Next, the obtained 3D brain sections were seeded with murine NSC expressing both the eGFP and luciferase reporter proteins (NSC-eGFP/Luc). Using real-time bioluminescence imaging, the survival and growth of seeded NSC-eGFP/Luc cells was longitudinally monitored for 1-7 weeks in culture, indicating the ability of the acellular brain sections to support sustained ex vivo growth of NSC. Next, the organization of a 3D maze-like cellular structure was examined using confocal microscopy. Moreover, under mitogenic stimuli (EGF and hFGF-2), most cells in this 3D culture retained their NSC phenotype. Concluding, we here present a novel protocol for decellularization of mouse brain sections, which subsequently support long-term 3D culture of undifferentiated NSC. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Biomaterials 02/2015; 41C:122-131. DOI:10.1016/j.biomaterials.2014.11.025 · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to explore the association between resistance and outpatient antibiotic use, expressed as either DDDs per 1000 inhabitants per day (DID) or packages per 1000 inhabitants per day (PID). IMS Health data on outpatient penicillin and cephalosporin (β-lactam) and tetracycline, macrolide, lincosamide and streptogramin (TMLS) use, aggregated at the level of the active substance (WHO version 2011) expressed as DID and PID (2000-07) were linked to European Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System (EARSS) data on proportions of penicillin-non-susceptible Streptococcus pneumoniae (PNSP) and erythromycin-non-susceptible S. pneumoniae (ENSP) (2000-09). Combined data for 27 European countries were analysed with a generalized linear mixed model. Model fit for use in DID, PID or both and 0, 1 or 2 year time lags between use and resistance was assessed and predictions of resistance were made for decreasing use expressed as DID, PID or both. When exploring the association between β-lactam use and PNSP, the best model fit was obtained for use in PID without time lag. For the association between TMLS use and ENSP, the best model fit was obtained for use in both PID and DID with a 1 year time lag. PNSP and ENSP are predicted to decrease when use decreases in PID, but not when use decreases in DID. Associations between outpatient antibiotic use and resistance and predictions of resistance were inconsistent whether expressing antibiotic use as DID or PID. We recommend that data on antibiotic use be expressed as PID and that time lags between use and resistance be considered when exploring these associations. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.
    Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 01/2015; DOI:10.1093/jac/dku525 · 5.44 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite long-standing two-dose measles-mumpsrubella (MMR) vaccination, measles outbreaks still occur in highly vaccinated European populations. For instance, large measles outbreaks occurred in France (2008–13), the United Kingdom (2012–13) and the Netherlands (2012). Based on a multicohort model approach, using spatial serological survey data, MMR vaccination coverage data and data on social contacts, we found effective reproduction numbers significantly higher than 1 for measles in Belgium. This indicates that at one of the expected re-introductions, a measles outbreak is likely to spread, especially when it occurs during school term. The predicted average effective reproduction number increased over a 30-year time span from 1.3 to 2.2 and from 1.9 to 3.2 for basic reproduction numbers of 12 and 18, respectively. The expected relative measles incidence was highest in infants under one year of age, in adolescents and young adults. In conclusion, gradually increasing proportions of susceptible adolescents and young adults provide through their highly active social life an avenue for measles to resurge in large outbreaks upon re-introduction in Belgium, especially during school terms. Infants form an important vulnerable group during future measles outbreaks.
    Eurosurveillance: bulletin europeen sur les maladies transmissibles = European communicable disease bulletin 01/2015; 20(1). DOI:10.2807/1560-7917.ES2015.20.1.20998 · 4.66 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Causative agents for more than 30 percent of respiratory infections remain unidentified, suggesting that unknown respiratory pathogens might be involved. In this study, antibody capture VIDISCA-454 (virus discovery cDNA-AFLP combined with Roche 454 high-throughput sequencing) resulted in the discovery of a novel type of rhinovirus C (RV-C). The virus has an RNA genome of at least 7054 nt and carries the characteristics of rhinovirus C species. The gene encoding viral protein 1, which is used for typing, has only 81% nucleotide sequence identity with the closest known RV-C type, and, therefore, the virus represents the first member of a novel type, named RV-C54
    Viruses 01/2015; 7(1-1):239-251. DOI:10.3390/v7010239 · 3.28 Impact Factor
  • Md de Jong · M Koopmans · H Goossens
    Eurosurveillance: bulletin europeen sur les maladies transmissibles = European communicable disease bulletin 12/2014; 19(50). DOI:10.2807/1560-7917.ES2014.19.50.20990 · 4.66 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

14k Citations
2,897.13 Total Impact Points


  • 2015
    • Memorial University of Newfoundland
      Saint John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
  • 1993–2015
    • University of Antwerp
      • • Vaccine & infectious disease institute
      • • Department of Chemistry
      Antwerpen, Flemish, Belgium
    • Universitair Ziekenhuis Ghent
      Gand, Flanders, Belgium
  • 2014
    • University of Nottingham
      • Division of Primary Care
      Nottigham, England, United Kingdom
  • 2012
    • Academisch Medisch Centrum Universiteit van Amsterdam
      • Department of Otorhinolaryngology
      Amsterdamo, North Holland, Netherlands
  • 2011
    • København Zoo
      København, Capital Region, Denmark
    • University of Lodz
      Łódź, Łódź Voivodeship, Poland
  • 2007–2011
    • Erasmushogeschool Brussel
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 2010
    • Cardiff University
      • Department of Primary Care and Public Health
      Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
  • 2009
    • European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control
      Solna, Stockholm, Sweden
  • 2004–2007
    • Leiden University
      Leyden, South Holland, Netherlands
  • 2003–2007
    • Leiden University Medical Centre
      • Department of Medical Microbiology
      Leyden, South Holland, Netherlands
  • 2006
    • Belgian Scientific Institute for Public Health
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 2001
    • Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Mont-Godinne
      Yvoir, Wallonia, Belgium
    • Universitair Ziekenhuis Antwerpen
      Antwerpen, Flanders, Belgium
  • 1995–2001
    • Ghent University
      • • Laboratory of Microbiology
      • • Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
      Gand, Flanders, Belgium
  • 1999
    • University Hospital Linköping
      • Department of Infectious Diseases
      Linköping, Östergötland, Sweden
  • 1992–1993
    • University of Leicester
      • Department of Genetics
      Leicester, ENG, United Kingdom
    • Hôpital Universitaire des Enfants Reine Fabiola
      • Department of Gastroenterology
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 1984–1993
    • University Hospital Brussels
      • Department of Pediatrics
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
    • University of Rwanda
      Astrida, Southern Province, Rwanda
  • 1985–1992
    • Vrije Universiteit Brussel
      • Department of Microbiology
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital, Belgium
    • University of Geneva
      • Department of Biochemistry
      Genève, Geneva, Switzerland
  • 1983–1989
    • Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Saint-Pierre
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 1987
    • Institut de Cancérologie Gustave Roussy
      Villejuif, Île-de-France, France