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George Kafatos

George Kafatos
Amgen · Center for Observational Research

MSc PhD

About

54
Publications
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2,976
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Introduction
Skills and Expertise
Additional affiliations
January 2002 - present
Health Protection Agency
Position
  • Statistician

Publications

Publications (54)
Data
This was a proof of principle study to determine whether home made masks might offer protection against respiratory pathogens. We have uploaded an FAQs document in response to questions received about the study.
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For outbreaks of gastrointestinal disease, rapid identification of the source is crucial to enable public health intervention and prevent further cases. Outbreak investigation comprises analyses of exposure information from cases and, if required, undertaking analytical epidemiological studies. Hypothesis generation has been reliant on empirical kn...
Article
Population seroprevalence can be estimated from serosurveys by classifying quantitative measurements into positives (past infection/vaccinated) or negatives (susceptible) according to a fixed assay cut-off. The choice of assay cut-offs has a direct impact on seroprevalence estimates. A time-resolved fluorescence immunoassay (TRFIA) was used to test...
Article
In 2012, an ongoing outbreak of diphtheria in Indonesia was focused in the province of East Java. There was a need to assess vaccine coverage and immunity gaps in children. We conducted a cross-sectional seroprevalence and vaccine coverage survey of children 1-15 years of age in two districts of East Java: one of high incidence (on the island of Ma...
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We report a widespread foodborne outbreak of Cryptosporidium parvum in England and Scotland in May 2012. Cases were more common in female adults, and had no history of foreign travel. Over 300 excess cases were identified during the period of the outbreak. Speciation and microbiological typing revealed the outbreak strain to be C. parvum gp60 subty...
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The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network 2 (ESEN2) project was to estimate age-specific seroprevalence for a number of vaccine-preventable diseases in Europe. To achieve this serosurveys were collected by 22 national laboratories. To adjust for a variety of laboratory methods and assays, all quantitative results were transformed to a refer...
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SUMMARY Indigenously acquired hepatitis E infections have increased substantially in England and Wales since 2010. Epidemiological investigations were undertaken to determine risk factors for the acquisition of infection. A case-control study (25 cases, 75 controls) was used to test the hypothesis that hepatitis E infection was related to consumpti...
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Estimates of seasonal influenza vaccine effectiveness (VE) are affected by factors such as the strain of the current circulating influenza virus and characteristics of the host. The objective of this study was to provide VE estimates for the 2010/2011 seasonal trivalent influenza vaccine (TIV) in preventing medically attended influenza in England a...
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Healthcare-associated infections in long-term care facilities (LTCFs) are of increasing importance. To develop consensus national performance indicators (NPIs) for infection control (ICPI) and antimicrobial stewardship (ASPI) in LTCFs, and assess the performance of 32 European countries against these NPIs. Previously established European standards...
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This study examined homemade masks as an alternative to commercial face masks. Several household materials were evaluated for the capacity to block bacterial and viral aerosols. Twenty-one healthy volunteers made their own face masks from cotton t-shirts; the masks were then tested for fit. The number of microorganisms isolated from coughs of healt...
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The impact was assessed of censored serological measurements on regression equations fitted to data from panels of sera tested by different laboratories, for the purpose of standardizing serosurvey results to common units. Several methods that adjust for censoring were compared, such as deletion, simple substitution, multiple imputation and censore...
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Objectives Carbon monoxide (CO) exposure does not produce a classical toxidrome and so it is thought that it may easily be missed, allowing patients to continue to be exposed to CO. The aim of this study was to determine the proportion of raised carboxyhaemoglobin (COHb) levels in a targeted population of patients presenting to four emergency depar...
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Since 2007, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has supported I-MOVE (influenza monitoring vaccine effectiveness), a network to monitor seasonal and pandemic influenza vaccine effectiveness (IVE) in the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA). To set up I-MOVE, we conducted a literature review and a survey on...
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Mumps outbreaks have recently been recorded in a number of highly vaccinated populations. We related seroprevalence, epidemiological and vaccination data from 18 European countries participating in The European Sero-Epidemiology Network (ESEN) to their risk of mumps outbreaks in order to inform vaccination strategies. Samples from national populati...
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Recently, a commercial, standardised VZV IgG glycoprotein EIA, Binding Site VaccZyme™VZV glycoprotein IgG low level EIA (VaccZyme™EIA) has become available. The VaccZyme™EIA is more robust and user friendly than the reference VZV time-resolved fluorescence immunoassay (VZV TRFIA). To assess the usefulness of the VaccZyme™EIA in the diagnostic labor...
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SUMMARYSerological surveys for diphtheria were conducted in six European countries including Czech Republic, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Luxembourg, Slovakia and one country outside Europe, Israel. For each country, a nationally representative population sample was collected across the entire age range and was tested for antibodies to diphtheria toxi...
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SUMMARYThe WHO recommends hepatitis A virus (HAV) immunization according to level of transmission and disease burden. We aimed to identify susceptible age groups by standardized serosurveys to inform HAV vaccination policy in participating countries: Belgium, Czech Republic, England, Finland, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Romania, and Slovakia....
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Between July and October 2010, a national outbreak comprising 136 cases of Salmonella Java phage type 3b variant 9 was identified by the Health Protection Agency. Most cases were female. Cases had a median age of 39.5 years and lived in London, the South East and East of England. Parallel case–control and case–case study designs were undertaken to...
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The United Kingdom implemented a containment strategy for pandemic (H1N1) 2009 through administering antiviral agents (AVs) to patients and their close contacts. This observational household cohort study describes the effect of AVs on household transmission. We followed 285 confirmed primary cases in 259 households with 761 contacts. At 2 weeks, th...
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To determine the effect of enhanced cleaning of the near-patient environment on the isolation of hospital pathogens from the bed area and staff hands. Prospective randomized crossover study over the course of 1 yr. Intensive care units at two teaching hospitals. There were 1252 patients staying during enhanced cleaning and 1331 staying during stand...
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The UK was one of few European countries to document a substantial wave of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza in summer 2009. The First Few Hundred (FF100) project ran from April–June 2009 gathering information on early laboratory-confirmed cases across the UK. In total, 392 confirmed cases were followed up. Children were predominantly affected (median...
Article
The UK was one of few European countries to document a substantial wave of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza in summer 2009. The First Few Hundred (FF100) project ran from April-June 2009 gathering information on early laboratory-confirmed cases across the UK. In total, 392 confirmed cases were followed up. Children were predominantly affected (median...
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A source of infection is rarely identified for sporadic cases of Legionnaires' disease. We found that professional drivers are five times more commonly represented among community acquired sporadic cases in England and Wales than expected. We therefore investigated possible risk exposures in relation to driving or spending time in a motor vehicle....
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Listeriosis is a rare but severe food-borne disease that predominantly affects pregnant women, the unborn, newborns, the elderly and immunocompromised people. Following a large outbreak in the 1980s, specific food safety advice was provided to pregnant women and the immunocompromised in the United Kingdom. Following two coincident yet unconnected c...
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We analyzed data on all laboratory-confirmed cases of H1N1pdm influenza in the UK to 10th June 2009 to estimate epidemiological characteristics. We estimated a mean incubation period of 2.05 days and serial interval of 2.5 days with infectivity peaking close to onset of symptoms. Transmission was initially sporadic but increased from mid-May in Eng...
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In 2008, acute hepatitis E infection was confirmed in 4 passengers returning to the United Kingdom after a world cruise. Epidemiologic investigation showed that of 789 persons who provided blood samples, 195 (25%) were seropositive, 33 (4%) had immunoglobulin [Ig] M levels consistent with recent acute infection (11 of these persons were symptomatic...
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Natural immunity to meningococcal disease in young children is associated epidemiologically with carriage of commensal Neisseria species, including Neisseria lactamica. We have previously demonstrated that outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) from N. lactamica provide protection against lethal challenge in a mouse model of meningococcal septicemia. We ev...
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Following importations of cases from Mexico and the United States, by 11 May, United Kingdom surveillance activities had detected a total of 65 individuals with confirmed infections caused by the new influenza A(H1N1) virus. The infections were mainly in young people and younger adults and they spread within households and within schools. The illne...
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Hepatitis C is a global health problem and in the UK seroprevalence studies have mainly concentrated on specific high-risk groups. The aim of this study was to determine changes in the prevalence of antibody to hepatitis C virus in England using residual specimens collected between 1986 and 2000 reflecting the general population. A cross-sectional...
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To inform current and future vaccination strategies, we describe the seroepidemiology of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in ten representative European countries using standardized serology that allowed international comparisons. Between 1996 and 2003, national serum banks were compiled by collecting residual sera or by community sampling; sera w...
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The aim of this study was to assess the effects of reductions in the number of isolates tested by phage-typing on the recognition of outbreaks of salmonellosis. Five outbreaks (categorized as 'small', 'medium' or 'large') which occurred in England in 2005 were used as examples. The outbreaks were caused by serotypes which were subdivided by phage-t...
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The European Sero-Epidemiology Network 2 (ESEN2) aimed to compare serological results of vaccine-preventable diseases across Europe. To ensure direct inter-country comparability of hepatitis A virus antibody (anti-HAV) measurements, a standardization panel of 150 sera was developed by a designated reference laboratory and tested by participating na...
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A standardisation process, already developed during the earlier European Sero-Epidemiology Network (ESEN) project, was employed with a more robust algorithm to harmonise results of pertussis serological assays performed in 12 European and non-European countries. Initially, results from each country's own assay were compared with those obtained at t...
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An increase in idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP) cases in the 6 weeks following the first dose of the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine has been established, with absolute risks estimated as 1 in 22 3001 and 1 in 21 000 vaccine doses,2 with two in every three cases attributable to the vaccine. However, the risk after a second dose of...
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We investigated the comparative seroepidemiology of varicella zoster virus (VZV) in pregnant women of two ethnic groups, white British and Bangladeshi, living in an inner city area of London, United Kingdom. Women aged 16-45 years were recruited from antenatal clinics of the Royal London Hospital in the Borough of Tower Hamlets. Complete data were...
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The European sero-epidemiology network (ESEN2) aims to standardise serological surveillance of varicella zoster virus (VZV) in 11 participant countries. In each country, serum banks were collected between 1996 and 2003 and tested for VZV antibodies. Assay results were standardised so that international comparisons could be made. Age-specific forces...
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The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network is to establish comparability of the serological surveillance of vaccine-preventable diseases in Europe. The designated reference laboratory (RL) for measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) prepared and tested a panel of 151 sera by the reference enzyme immunoassay (rEIA). Laboratories in 21 countries tested...
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The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network 2 was to coordinate and standardize the serological surveillance of vaccine-preventable diseases in Europe. In this study, the standardization of hepatitis B virus (HBV) results is described. The 15 participating national laboratories tested a unique panel of 172 sera established by the Greek refere...
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Since the early 1980s, there has been an increase in the number of outbreaks investigated using analytical epidemiology since it became widely accepted that microbiological investigation alone is often insufficient. This increase has also been encouraged by a growing availability of statistical tools within public health and the establishment of in...
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The performance of a time-resolved fluorescence immunoassay (TRFIA) for detection of treponemal IgG from oral fluid specimens has been assessed in a predominantly HIV-infected population. Serological investigation is the method of choice for confirming clinical suspicion of syphilis; however, in the primary stage of disease, direct detection of tre...
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Background: The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network (ESEN2) is to harmonise the serological surveillance of vaccine-preventable diseases in Europe. Objective: To allow comparison of antibody prevalence in different countries by standardising results into common units. Study design: For varicella zoster virus (VZV), a reference labora...
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Understanding predisposing factors for meningococcal carriage may identify targets for public health interventions. Before mass vaccination with meningococcal group C conjugate vaccine began in autumn 1999, we took pharyngeal swabs from approximately 14,000 UK teenagers and collected information on potential risk factors. Neisseria meningitidis was...
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Highly sensitive and specific, quantitative assays are needed to detect varicella-zoster virus (VZV) immunoglobulin G in human sera, particularly for determining immune status and response following vaccination. A time-resolved fluorescence immunoassay (TRFIA) has been developed, and its performance was compared to that of two commercial enzyme imm...
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Surprisingly little is known regarding the human mixing patterns relevant to the spread of close-contact infections, such as measles, influenza and meningococcal disease. This study aims to estimate the number of partnerships that individuals make, their stability and the degree to which mixing is assortative with respect to age. We defined four le...
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The aim of the European Sero-Epidemiology Network 2 (ESEN2) is to compare standardised serological results of vaccine preventable diseases across Europe. In order to adjust for laboratory and assay differences, the participant laboratories tested a standardisation panel for each disease and the results were plotted against those of a reference cent...
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Full-text available
We wished to estimate the incidence of surgical-site infection (SSI) after total hip replacement (THR) and hemiarthroplasty and its strength of association with major risk factors. The SSI surveillance service prospectively gathered clinical, operative and infection data on inpatients from 102 hospitals in England during a four-year period. The ove...

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