Alaska Native people have suffered disproportionately from previous influenza pandemics. We evaluated 3 separate syndromic data sources to determine temporal and geographic patterns of spread of 2009 pandemic influenza A H1N1 (pH1N1) in Alaska, and reviewed records from persons hospitalized with pH1N1 disease in 3 areas in Alaska to characterize clinical and epidemiologic features of disease in Alaskans. A wave of pH1N1 disease swept through Alaska beginning in most areas in August or early September. In rural regions, where Alaska Native people comprise a substantial proportion of the population, disease occurred earlier than in other regions. Alaska Native people and Asian/Pacific Islanders (A/PI) were 2-4 times more likely to be hospitalized than whites. Alaska Native people and other minorities remain at high risk for early and substantial morbidity from pandemic influenza episodes. These findings should be integrated into plans for distribution and use of vaccine and antiviral agents.
Helicobacter pylori infection is more common in Alaska Native persons than in the general U.S. population, with seroprevalence to H. pylori approaching 75%. Previous studies in Alaska have demonstrated elevated proportions of antimicrobial resistance among H. pylori isolates. We analyzed H. pylori data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's sentinel surveillance in Alaska from January 2000 to December 2008 to determine the proportion of culture-positive biopsy specimens with antimicrobial resistance from Alaska Native persons undergoing endoscopy. The aim of the present study was to monitor antimicrobial resistance of H. pylori isolates over time and by region in Alaska Native persons. Susceptibility testing of H. pylori isolates to metronidazole, clarithromycin, amoxicillin, and tetracycline was performed using agar dilution. Susceptibility testing for levofloxacin was performed by Etest. Overall, 45% (532/1,181) of persons undergoing upper endoscopy were culture positive for H. pylori. Metronidazole resistance was demonstrated in isolates from 222/531 (42%) persons, clarithromycin resistance in 159/531 (30%) persons, amoxicillin resistance in 10/531 (2%) persons, and levofloxacin resistance in 30/155 (19%) persons; no tetracycline resistance was documented. The prevalence of metronidazole, clarithromycin, and levofloxacin resistance varied by region. Female patients were more likely than male patients to demonstrate metronidazole (P
BACKGROUND: The duration of protection afforded by hepatitis B vaccination is unknown. OBJECTIVE: To determine antibody persistence and protection from hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. DESIGN: Prospective cohort study. SETTING: 15 villages in southwest Alaska. PARTICIPANTS: 1578 Alaska Natives vaccinated at age 6 months or older. INTERVENTION: During 1981-1982, participants received 3 doses of plasma-derived hepatitis B vaccine. This cohort was followed annually over the first 11 years, and 841 (53%) persons were tested at 15 years. MEASUREMENTS: Antibody to hepatitis B surface antigen (anti-HBs), markers of HBV infection, and testing to identify HBV variants. RESULTS: Levels of anti-HBs in the cohort decreased from a geometric mean concentration of 822 mIU/mL after vaccination to 27 mIU/mL at 15 years. Initial anti-HBs level, older age at vaccination, and male sex were associated with persistence of higher anti-HBs levels at 15 years when analyzed by a longitudinal linear mixed model. After adjustment for initial anti-HBs level and sex, those vaccinated at age 6 months to 4 years had the lowest anti-HBs level at 15 years. Asymptomatic breakthrough infections were detected in 16 participants and occurred more frequently in persons who did not respond to vaccination than those who responded (P = 0.01). Among infected persons with viremia, 2 were infected with wild-type HBV and 4 had HBV surface glycoprotein variants, generally accompanied by wild-type HBV. LIMITATIONS: The loss of participants to follow-up at 15 years was 47%. However, characteristics of persons tested were similar to those of persons lost to follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Hepatitis B vaccination strongly protected against infection for at least 15 years in all age groups. Antibody levels decreased the most among persons immunized at 4 years of age or younger.
Comment In: Ann Intern Med. 2005 Mar 1;142(5):384-515738458
Comment In: Ann Intern Med. 2005 Mar 1;142(5):I3415738447
Arctic Investigations Program, Division of Preparedness and Emerging Infections, National Center for Emerging Zoonoses and Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Anchorage, AK 99508, United States. email@example.com
To evaluate the accuracy of two non-invasive tests in a population of Alaska Native persons. High rates of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection, H. pylori treatment failure, and gastric cancer in this population necessitate documentation of infection status at multiple time points over a patient's life.
In 280 patients undergoing endoscopy, H. pylori was diagnosed by culture, histology, rapid urease test, (13)C urea breath test (UBT), and immunoglobulin G antibodies to H. pylori in serum. The performances of (13)C-UBT and antibody test were compared to a gold standard defined by a positive H. pylori test by culture or, in case of a negative culture result, by positive histology and a positive rapid urease test.
The sensitivity and specificity of the (13)C-UBT were 93% and 88%, respectively, relative to the gold standard. The antibody test had an equivalent sensitivity of 93% with a reduced specificity of 68%. The false positive results for the antibody test were associated with previous treatment for an H. pylori infection [relative risk (RR) = 2.8]. High levels of antibodies to H. pylori were associated with chronic gastritis and male gender, while high scores in the (13)C-UBT test were associated with older age and with the H. pylori bacteria load on histological examination (RR = 4.4).
The (13)C-UBT outperformed the antibody test for H. pylori and could be used when a non-invasive test is clinically necessary to document treatment outcome or when monitoring for reinfection.
Cites: J Infect Dis. 2009 Mar 1;199(5):652-6019125674
Cites: Can J Gastroenterol. 2006 Dec;20(12):775-817171196
OBJECTIVES: Studies on the natural history and outcome of chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection differ regarding the proportion of persons who develop serious sequelae over time. Most of these studies use an estimated date of HCV infection based on risk factor data obtained from patient interviews. The date of HCV infection is often estimated using the year of a pre-1992 blood transfusion (BT), or the first year of injecting drug use (IDU). We sought to determine the accuracy of these dates obtained by interview. METHODS: We compared BT dates reported by patients in a long-term HCV outcome study to dates confirmed in a BT-Lookback project, and also compared the reported first year of IDU to seroconversion dates estimated from HCV tests on historical sera. RESULTS: Of 28 BT recipients who were interviewed in the HCV outcome study and identified in the Lookback project, 14 (50%; 95% CI: 31-69%) were unaware they had received a BT. Of 25 persons identified in the BT-Lookback project with historical sera available, 9 (36%; 95% CI: 19-57%) had anti-HCV results that did not correlate with their confirmed BT date. Of 216 persons with a history of IDU and historical serum samples available, 66 (31%; 95% CI: 25-37%) had anti-HCV results that did not correlate with their reported first year of IDU. CONCLUSIONS: Inaccuracies in the length of HCV could occur in outcome studies that rely on patient recall of risk-factor history. Statistical methods that incorporate the uncertainty in assigning infection date are needed.
OBJECTIVE: To compare characteristics of persons in rural northern communities who participated in a study on antimicrobial use and drug-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae (SP) to those who did not participate. STUDY DESIGN: The original study (1998--2000) was a community-based, controlled intervention trial designed to determine the penicillin susceptibility of nasopharyngeal SP isolates in relation to community-wide use of antibiotics. The study continued after 2000, in a subset of the original communities, to prospectively evaluate the impact of the heptavalent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine on the carriage of SP. The results presented here are an analysis of the first five years of data. METHODS: We conducted annual surveys (1998--2002) for nasopharyngeal colonization of SP using a volunteer sample of residents in rural communities. Medical chart reviews for health clinic visitation and antibiotic use were completed for all village residents. RESULTS: Participants were younger (22.8 vs. 28.4 years), had more health clinic utilization (3.3 vs. 2.4 visits) and received more antibiotics (1.0 vs. 0.6 courses) than non-participants. Differences between participants and non-participants were similar across all years of the study. CONCLUSIONS: Our study provides further empirical evidence that selection bias should be considered when designing studies. However, a volunteer sample provided internal consistency for comparison of our main study outcomes across time.
Comment In: Int J Circumpolar Health. 2005 Feb;64(1):2-315776987
Division of Applied Public Health Training, Epidemiology Program Office, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
BACKGROUND: Streptococcus pneumoniae is a leading cause of invasive bacterial disease and pneumonia among children. Antimicrobial resistance among pneumococci has increased in recent years and complicates treatment. The introduction of heptavalent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV7) could reduce acquisition of antimicrobial-resistant pneumococci. METHODS: We obtained 1350 nasopharyngeal swabs for culture from 1275 children aged 3-59 months presenting at 3 clinics in Anchorage, Alaska, during the winters of 2000, 2001, and 2002, as PCV7 was being introduced into the routine immunization schedule. We recorded the frequency of use of antibiotics as well as the dates of doses of PCV7 for enrolled children. We used multivariate logistic regression modeling to identify independent risk factors for overall carriage of pneumococci and carriage of PCV7-type pneumococci, cotrimoxazole-nonsusceptible (COT-NS) pneumococci, or penicillin-nonsusceptible (PCN-NS) pneumococci. RESULTS: The proportion of children who were up-to-date for age, with respect to PCV7 vaccination, increased from 0% in 2000 to 55% in 2002. Carriage of PCV7-type pneumococci decreased by 43% (P
We evaluated invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD), antimicrobial resistance and nasopharyngeal colonization before and after introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV7) in Alaska Natives (AN), a population with high IPD rates. We obtained IPD rates from population-based surveillance. Colonization was determined from annual surveys among rural AN of all ages and from urban children. After vaccine introduction, vaccine-type IPD rates declined by 91% among AN children
Changes in pneumococcal serotype-specific carriage and invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) after the introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV7) could inform serotype epidemiology patterns following the introduction of newer conjugate vaccines.
We used data from statewide IPD surveillance and annual pneumococcal carriage studies in four regions of Alaska to calculate serotype-specific invasiveness ratios (IR; odds ratio of a carried serotype's likelihood to cause invasive disease compared to other serotypes) in children 1) caused 66% of IPD in both periods, although fewer serotypes with IR>1 remained in the post-vaccine (n=9) than the pre-vaccine period (n=13).
After PCV7 introduction, serotype IRs changed little, and four of the most invasive serotypes were nearly eliminated. If PCV13 use leads to a reduction of carriage and IPD for the 13 vaccine serotypes, the overall IPD rate should further decline.
The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
BACKGROUND: Alaska Native (AN) children were at high risk of acquiring hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection before vaccination began in 1983. We evaluated the long-term protection from hepatitis B (HB) vaccination among AN children immunized when infants. METHODS: During 1984-1995, we recruited a convenience sample of AN children who had received a three dose series of HB vaccine starting at birth and had serum antibody to hepatitis B (anti-HBs) concentrations of >/= 10 mIU/mL at 7-26 months of age. We evaluated anti-HBs concentrations and the presence of anti-HBc in participants' sera every other year up to age 16 years. Anti-HB core antigen (anti-HBc)-positive specimens were tested for hepatitis B surface antigen and for HBV DNA. RESULTS: We followed 334 children for 3151 person-years (median, 10 years per child) with 1610 specimens collected. Anti-HBs concentrations dropped rapidly among all participants. Among children 2, 5 and 10 years of age, 37 of 79 (47%), 33 of 176 (19%) and 8 of 95 (8%), respectively, had anti-HBs concentrations of >/= 10 mIU/mL. Receipt of recombinant vaccine was significantly associated with a more rapid antibody decline (P