[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Antigenic changes in the HA1 domain of the influenza A/H3N2 hemagglutinin (HA) present a challenge in the design of the annual influenza vaccine. We examined the genetic variability in the nucleotide and amino acid of encoding HA1 sequences of the influenza A/H3N2 virus during the 2015 influenza season in Thailand. Toward this, the HA genes of 45 influenza A/H3N2 strains were amplified and sequenced. Although a clade 3C.3a strain (A/Switzerland/9715293/2013) was chosen for the 2015 vaccine, phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that strains belonging to clade 3C.2a (96 %) instead of clade 3C.3a (4 %) were circulating that year. Sequence analysis showed that seven codons were under positive selection, five of which were located inside the antigenic epitopes. The percentages of the perfect match vaccine efficacy (VE) estimated by the P
epitope model against circulating strains suggested antigenic drift of the dominant epitopes A and B, which contributed to reduced VE of the 2015 vaccine. However, the 2016 vaccine strain (A/Hong Kong/4801/2014) was closely related and well matched against the circulating strain (mean of VE = 79.3 %). These findings provide data on the antigenic drift of the influenza A/H3N2 virus circulating in Thailand and further support continual monitoring and surveillance of the antigenic changes on HA1.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Influenza B viruses comprise two lineages, Victoria (B/Vic) and Yamagata (B/Yam), which co-circulate globally. The surveillance data on influenza B virus lineages in many countries often underestimate the true prevalence due to the lack of a rapid, accurate, and cost-effective method for virus detection. We have developed a real-time PCR with melting curve analysis for lineage-specific differential detection of influenza B virus. By amplifying a region of the hemagglutinin gene using real-time PCR with SYBR Green I dye, B/Vic and B/Yam could be differentiated based on their melting temperature peaks. This method was efficient (B/Vic = 93.2 %; B/Yam 97.7 %), sensitive (B/Vic, 94.6 %; B/Yam, 96.3 %), and specific (B/Vic, 97.7 %; B/Yam, 97.1 %). The lower detection limit was 10(2) copies per microliter. The assay was evaluated using 756 respiratory specimens that were positive for influenza B virus, obtained between 2010 and 2015. The incidence of influenza B virus was approximately 18.9 % of all influenza cases, and the percentage was highest among children aged 6-17 years (7.57 %). The overall percentage of mismatched influenza B vaccine was 21.1 %. Our findings suggest that real-time PCR with melting curve analysis can provide a rapid, simple, and sensitive lineage-specific influenza B virus screening method to facilitate influenza surveillance.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection affects ≥ 180 million individuals worldwide especially those living in developing countries. Recent advances in direct-acting therapeutics promise effective treatments for chronic HCV carriers, but only if the affected individuals are identified. Good treatment coverage therefore requires accurate epidemiological data on HCV infection. In 2014, we determined the current prevalence of HCV in Thailand to assess whether over the past decade the significant number of chronic carriers had changed. In total, 5964 serum samples from Thai residents between 6 months and 71 years of age were obtained from 7 provinces representing all 4 geographical regions of Thailand and screened for the anti-HCV antibody. Positive samples were further analyzed using RT-PCR, sequencing, and phylogenetic analysis to identify the prevailing HCV genotypes. We found that 56 (0.94%) samples tested positive for anti-HCV antibody (mean age = 36.6±17.6 years), while HCV RNA of the core and NS5B subgenomic regions was detected in 23 (41%) and 19 (34%) of the samples, respectively. The seropositive rates appeared to increase with age and peaked in individuals 41-50 years old. These results suggested that approximately 759,000 individuals are currently anti-HCV-positive and that 357,000 individuals have viremic HCV infection. These numbers represent a significant decline in the prevalence of HCV infection. Interestingly, the frequency of genotype 6 variants increased from 8.9% to 34.8%, while the prevalence of genotype 1b declined from 27% to 13%. These most recent comprehensive estimates of HCV burden in Thailand are valuable towards evidence-based treatment coverage for specific population groups, appropriate allocation of resources, and improvement in the national public health policy.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Human rotavirus A (RVA) is the major infectious virus causing acute watery diarrhea in children, especially those younger than 5years of age, and is a major public health problem in Thailand. Outbreaks of this virus have been reported worldwide. Besides the common genotypes, unusual genotypes providing evidence of inter-species transmission have also been described. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence and genotypes of RVA in Thailand. A total of 688 samples were collected from children who were hospitalized with acute diarrhea in Chumphae Hospital in Khon Kaen and Chulalongkorn Hospital in Bangkok. RVA was detected using one-step RT-PCR and the genotypes were evaluated by sequencing. Overall, 204 of the 688 samples (30%) were positive for RVA. Nine genotypes were identified: three common in humans (G1P [53%], G2P [18%], G3P [12%]), one feline-like (G3P [1%]), four porcine-like (G4P [0.5%], G5P [0.5%], G9P [0.5%], G12P [1.5%]), and one bovine-like (G8P [13%]) genotype. The variation in virus genotypes and the animal-like genotypes detected in this study suggested that a high diversity of RVA types is circulating in the Thai population. Therefore, continuous molecular epidemiological monitoring of RVA is essential and has implications for the national vaccination program.
Full-text Article · Jan 2016 · Infection, genetics and evolution: journal of molecular epidemiology and evolutionary genetics in infectious diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) was associated with severe lower respiratory tract infection and neurological abnormalities including acute myelitis and cranial nerve dysfunction. To determine whether the increased incidence of EV-D68 also occurs in Southeast Asia, we retrospectively tested specimens collected from Thai pediatric patients less than five years of age presented with acute respiratory tract infections between 2012 and 2014. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and nucleotide sequencing of the 5'UTR/VP2 region were used to identify EV-D68. We also examined the epidemiological pattern of EV-D68 since 2009 when it was first identified in Thailand and compiled clinical manifestations of children with confirmed EV-D68 infection. From the total of 837 samples, 5 samples (0.6%) were confirmed positive for EV-D68. All patients presented viral pneumonia and required hospitalization. Phylogenetic analysis of the VP4/VP2 regions revealed that EV-D68 strains circulating in Thailand during the past three years were closely related to the strains reported in Japan, United Kingdom, China, and France. Continued surveillance of probable EV-D68-associated severe respiratory tract infection and the development of rapid diagnostic test for EV-D68 are essential in assisting awareness and facilitating disease prevention and control.
Full-text Article · Nov 2015 · Japanese journal of infectious diseases
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Under selective pressure from the host immune system, antigenic epitopes of influenza virus hemagglutinin (HA) have continually evolved to escape antibody recognition, termed antigenic drift. We analyzed the genomes of influenza A(H3N2) and A(H1N1)pdm09 virus strains circulating in Thailand between 2010 and 2014 and assessed how well the yearly vaccine strains recommended for the southern hemisphere matched them. We amplified and sequenced the HA gene of 120 A(H3N2) and 81 A(H1N1)pdm09 influenza virus samples obtained from respiratory specimens and calculated the perfect-match vaccine efficacy using the pepitope model, which quantitated the antigenic drift in the dominant epitope of HA. Phylogenetic analysis of the A(H3N2) HA1 genes classified most strains into genetic clades 1, 3A, 3B, and 3C. The A(H3N2) strains from the 2013 and 2014 seasons showed very low to moderate vaccine efficacy and demonstrated antigenic drift from epitopes C and A to epitope B. Meanwhile, most A(H1N1)pdm09 strains from the 2012–2014 seasons belonged to genetic clades 6A, 6B, and 6C and displayed the dominant epitope mutations at epitopes B and E. Finally, the vaccine efficacy for A(H1N1)pdm09 (79.6–93.4%) was generally higher than that of A(H3N2). These findings further confirmed the accelerating antigenic drift of the circulating influenza A(H3N2) in recent years.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection affects an estimated two billion people worldwide. Since 1992, Thailand implemented universal HBV vaccination as part of the Expanded Program on Immunization (EPI) for newborns. This study aims to compare genotypes and characterize HBV by assessing pre-S/S and basic core promoter (BCP)/precore (PC) mutations in populations born before and after EPI implementation. A nationwide serosurvey conducted in 2014 assessed the impact of universal HBV vaccination in Thailand. Two cohort groups were established based on whether they were born before or after 1992. HBV DNA was amplified from HBsAg positive samples by PCR and sequenced. HBV genotypes, pre-S/S regions and BCP/PC mutations were characterized. From a total of 5,964 subjects, there were 2,805 (47.0%) and 3,159 (53.0%) individuals who were born before and after EPI implementation, respectively. The overall prevalence of HBsAg was 2.2%. The prevalence of HBsAg was significantly higher in the before EPI group (4.3%) than in the after EPI group (0.3%) (P< 0.001). HBV DNA was detected in 119 samples; 111 HBV-positive samples (93%) were genotype C (subgenotype C1). The "a" determinant mutation was only detected in the "before EPI" group. Twenty-two years after implementation of the EPI program, the HBV carrier rate is significantly reduced. The most prevalent genotype for the remaining HBV was C1. The "vaccine escape" mutant, especially the "a" determinant, was not detected after the launch of the EPI program, and the current HBV vaccine remains highly effective. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Tuberculosis, a re-emerging public health problem, is uncommon in infancy. Two healthy completely immunized infants presenting with manifestations compatible with osteoarticular infection required surgical debride-ment. The cultures of the specimens were positive for M. tuberculosis (MTB) complex comprised multiple subspecies. One case was misdiagnosed as a Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) related osteomyelitis by a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) based on detection of genes at the region of difference 1. Genome extraction and PCR using the rimM gene and sequences analysis against MTB and BCG control samples confirmed that both specimens were infected by M. tuberculosis. The lesions were successfully healed within one year. Surgical debridement of suspected lesions is warranted in infants as a definitive treatment and to obtain tissues for further evaluation. Microbiological cultures only confirm nonspecific MTB complex infection. PCR kits may yield a false positive result. Identification of the pathogen by DNA extraction and sequence analysis should be recommended.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Norovirus is a leading cause of acute non-bacterial gastroenteritis worldwide, affecting developing and developed countries, both children and adults. This study describes an outbreak of acute gastroenteritis at a daycare center of a tertiary level hospital in Bangkok, Thailand during October 2014. Although none of the staff became symptomatic, 8 01 11 children attending the center and 4 of their household contacts developed acute gastroenteritis. No pathogenic bacteria or rotavirus were detected in their evaluation; however, 3 out of 7 stool samples from the cases were positive for norovirus GII.17. Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis with sequence and phylogenetic analysis revealed the viral strain was the same strain reported from Taiwan in 2013. Because norovirus is a frequent cause of outbreaks in crowded conditions, early detection and preventive measures are important to control outbreaks.
Article · Jul 2015 · The Southeast Asian journal of tropical medicine and public health
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: The majority of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection results in chronic infection, which can lead to liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Global burden of hepatitis C virus (HCV) is estimated at 150 million individuals, or 3% of the world's population. The distribution of the seven major genotypes of HCV varies with geographical regions. Since Asia has a high incidence of HCV, we assessed the distribution of HCV genotypes in Thailand and Southeast Asia. From 588 HCV-positive samples obtained throughout Thailand, we characterized the HCV 5' untranslated region, Core, and NS5B regions by nested PCR. Nucleotide sequences obtained from both the Core and NS5B of these isolates were subjected to phylogenetic analysis, and genotypes were assigned using published reference genotypes. Results were compared to the epidemiological data of HCV genotypes identified within Southeast Asian. Among the HCV subtypes characterized in the Thai samples, subtype 3a was the most predominant (36.4%), followed by 1a (19.9%), 1b (12.6%), 3b (9.7%) and 2a (0.5%). While genotype 1 was prevalent throughout Thailand (27-36%), genotype 3 was more common in the south. Genotype 6 (20.9%) constituted subtype 6f (7.8%), 6n (7.7%), 6i (3.4%), 6j and 6m (0.7% each), 6c (0.3%), 6v and 6xa (0.2% each) and its prevalence was significantly lower in southern Thailand compared to the north and northeast (p = 0.027 and p = 0.030, respectively). Within Southeast Asia, high prevalence of genotype 6 occurred in northern countries such as Myanmar, Laos, and Vietnam, while genotype 3 was prevalent in Thailand and Malaysia. Island nations of Singapore, Indonesia and Philippines demonstrated prevalence of genotype 1. This study further provides regional HCV genotype information that may be useful in fostering sound public health policy and tracking future patterns of HCV spread.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Bufavirus (BuV) was initially discovered in fecal samples from children with acute diarrhea. In this study, we determined the prevalence, distribution, and genotype(s) of BuV in Thailand. A total of 1,495 diarrheal and 741 non-diarrheal stool specimens were collected and analyzed. A portion of the NS1 gene of BuV was amplified by nested RT-PCR. Phylogenetic analysis was performed to classify the BuV strains found. We detected bufavirus (BuV) in diarrheal (4/1495; 0.27 %) but not in non-diarrheal specimens (0/726). All four strains belonged to BuV genotype 1. BuV could be detected in adults and children, but its role in causing acute diarrhea remains unclear.
Full-text Article · May 2015 · Archives of Virology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Hepatitis A virus (HAV) and hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection in developing countries are associated with contaminated food or water. Although Thailand is non-endemic for HEV, sporadic infections may occur from zoonotic transmission. Individuals between 7 months to 69 years (mean age = 32.8) from predominantly Islamic Narathiwat (n = 305) and swine farm-dense Lop Buri (n = 416) provinces were screened for anti-HEV and anti-HAV antibodies by commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and automated chemiluminescent micro-particle immunoassay, respectively. Seroprevalence and relative antibody titers were analyzed according to age groups. HAV IgG antibody positive rates in Lop Buri and Narathiwat residents were 39.9% and 58%, respectively (p < 0.001). Greater than 90% of individuals >50 years old in both provinces possessed anti-HAV IgG. In contrast, seroprevalence for anti-HEV IgG was much higher in Lop Buri (37.3%) than in Narathiwat (8.9%) (p< 0.001). Highest anti-HEV IgG prevalence was found among 21-30 year-olds (50%) in Lop Buri and 41-50 year-olds (14.1%) in Narathiwat. In summary, fewer individuals possessed anti-HEV IgG in Narathiwat where most residents abstained from pork and fewer swine farms are present. Therefore, an increased anti-HEV IgG seroprevalence was associated with the density of swine farm and possibly pork consumption. Adults were more likely than children to have antibodies to both HEV and HAV.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Objectives:
Serum hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen (HCVcAg) concentrations correlate with HCV RNA levels in HCV monoinfected patients. Data in HCV/HIV coinfected patients are still limited. We aim to compare the use of HCVcAg measurement with respect to HIV status, HCV genotypes, interferon-lambda-4 (IFNL4) polymorphism and clinical parameters.
We analyzed an untreated cohort of 104 patients with HCV monoinfection and 85 patients with HCV/HIV coinfection. Serum HCVcAg was measured by a commercial chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. The presence of IFNL4 polymorphism ss469415590 was identified by real-time PCR.
log10 HCVcAg levels were significantly correlated with corresponding log10 HCV RNA levels (r = 0.889, p < 0.001), but not with ALT levels and liver stiffness. The correlation between HCV RNA and HCVcAg was particularly high in coinfected patients and those with high viremia. Mean log10 HCVcAg concentration was significantly higher in coinfected patients than in monoinfected patients. Patients harboring the TT/TT genotype of ss469415590 had significantly higher levels of log10 HCVcAg than those with the non-TT/TT genotype. HCVcAg levels were similar across HCV genotypes.
HCVcAg concentrations had an excellent correlation with HCV RNA levels, particularly in HCV/HIV-coinfected individuals and might be associated with IFNL4 polymorphism. HCVcAg testing could be used as an alternative to HCV RNA assays in resource-limited settings.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Acute haemorrhagic conjunctivitis outbreaks are often attributed to viral infection. In 2014, an unprecedented nationwide outbreak of infectious conjunctivitis occurred in Thailand, which affected >300 000 individuals over 3 months. To identify and characterize the virus responsible for the epidemic, eye swab specimens from 119 patients were randomly collected from five different provinces. Conserved regions in the enteroviral 5′-UTR and adenovirus hexon gene were analysed. Enterovirus was identified in 71·43% (85/119) of the samples, while no adenovirus was detected. From enterovirus-positive samples, the coxsackievirus A24 variant (70·59%, 84/119) and echovirus (0·84%, 1/119) were identified. Additional sequencing of full-length
genes and subsequent phylogenetic analysis revealed that these clinical isolates form a new lineage cluster related to genotype IV-C5. In summary, the coxsackievirus A24 variant was identified as an aetiological agent for the recent acute haemorrhagic conjunctivitis outbreak in Thailand.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract]ABSTRACT: Influenza A virus is a major cause of influenza pandemics and can infect several host species including humans and animals. The objective of this study was to develop a one-step reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification assay (LAMP) for the detection of genetically diverse influenza A viruses from both human and animal hosts. First, a set of two inner and two outer primers were designed based on the conserved region of the matrix (M) gene of influenza A viruses. The amplification reaction was optimized at 63 o C for 60 min and performed in a simple heat block. The amplicons could be visualized either by gel electrophoresis or by visual analysis upon addition of SybrGreen. The developed LAMP assay was tested with 50 influenza A isolates including H1N1, H1N2, H3N2, H5N1 and H7N4 from swine, avian and human hosts. In sensitivity test, the assay detection capability was ten times more sensitive than conventional RT-PCR and comparable to real time RT-PCR. In summary, this assay is a rapid, simple and sensitive assay suitable for less-equipped laboratories and thus can be utilized in the field as a screening test.
Full-text Article · Dec 2014 · The Thai veterinary medicine