News Scan for Mar 12, 2014

Drug-resistant Salmonella
Grant for translational research

Drug-resistant Salmonella linked to hospitalization, study finds

Drug-resistant Salmonella is associated with more severe clinical illness than drug-susceptible strains are, according to a study yesterday in Foodborne Pathogens and Disease.

Scientists from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state health departments directed a collaboration of the Foodborne Diseases Active Surveillance Network (FoodNet) and the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System to analyze data on Salmonella isolates from 2006 through 2008.

Of 875 isolates, 165 (19%) were resistant to at least one common antibiotic. The most common resistance pattern, found in 51 (31%) of the resistant isolates, was resistance to at least ampicillin, chloramphenicol, streptomycin, sulfisoxazole, and tetracycline.

"Adjusted for age, serotype, and bloodstream infection, hospitalization was significantly more common among patients infected with strains resistant to only three agents or to ceftriaxone (all ceftriaxone-resistant isolates were resistant to other agents) than among patients with pansusceptible isolates," they write.
Mar 11 Foodborne Pathog Dis abstract


NIH funds new center for translational research

W. Ian Lipkin, MD, PhD, director of the Center for Infection and Immunity at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, has received a grant of up to $31 million over 5 years from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to establish a center for translational research, the university said in a press release yesterday.

The Center for Research in Diagnostics and Discovery (CRDD) will tap leading experts in microbial and human genetics, engineering, microbial ecology, and public health to explore mechanisms of disease and methods for detecting pathogens, characterizing microflora, and identifying biomarkers to guide clinical management, the NIH said in the release.

"Infectious agents rarely found in a given community or country commonly are not screened for as multiple single diagnostic assays are cost-prohibitive and tests for the most likely agent is deemed warranted," Lipkin told CIDRAP News. "Yet it is increasingly clear that as infectious agents appear in new geographic regions and contexts, the medical and public heath communities must improve and modernize the methodologies they utilize."

He said the CRDD "aims to develop, validate, and implement multiplex platforms and predictive strategies that will advance detection of novel pathogens, identify host factors that influence susceptibility of disease, and predict effectiveness of drugs and vaccines."

He added that the center's investigators "will advance knowledge and platforms for the detection of agents that are either previously unidentified, known causes of epidemics, or select agents by developing and utilizing systems that could be rapidly redirected for pathogens of any type."

Other institutions collaborating with the CRDD include Stanford University, the University of North Carolina, the University of Washington, EcoHealth Alliance, and New York state and city health departments.
Mar 10 Columbia University news release

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