The results of screening more than 23,000 serum samples from persons belonging to risk groups, as well as those not belonging to such groups, in Moscow, Vilnius and Klaipeda are presented. Screening was carried out with the use of an assay system manufactured by the Scientific and Industrial Amalgamation "Antigen" (USSR). In this screening 3 HIV carriers were detected; of these, 2 were foreign students from two African countries.
Survivors from meningococcal disease (serogroups B and C) and a control series (blood donors) were examined for their ability to secrete ABH blood group substance. The examination was done indirectly by determining their Lewis phenotypes. There was no significant difference in the secretor status between the two groups.
We undertook a prospective study to estimate the risk in Montreal of developing hepatitis following transfusion of blood with an elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT) level. Two thousand consecutive donor units were screened for ALT activity; 133 (6.7%) had values greater than or equal to 51 IU 1(-1). Twenty-four patients received one or more units with elevated ALT levels and completed follow-up; two (8%) developed hepatitis (one of these was type B hepatitis). One of the 10 'control' patients who received only units with normal ALT levels also developed hepatitis. In this study, the risk of transfusion-transmitted hepatitis was the same in recipients of blood units with abnormal ALT levels as in those who received only blood with normal ALT, and very similar to the risk reported in other studies for recipients of volunteer donor blood with normal ALT. These findings require confirmation by a larger study, but suggest that the hepatitis risk associated with transfusion of high-ALT blood may be lower in Montreal than has been reported in several centers in the U.S.
ABO blood groups have been shown to be associated with increased risks of venous thromboembolic and arterial disease. However, the reported magnitude of this association is inconsistent and is based on evidence from small-scale studies.
We used the SCANDAT2 (Scandinavian Donations and Transfusions) database of blood donors linked with other nationwide health data registers to investigate the association between ABO blood groups and the incidence of first and recurrent venous thromboembolic and arterial events. Blood donors in Denmark and Sweden between 1987 and 2012 were followed up for diagnosis of thromboembolism and arterial events. Poisson regression models were used to estimate incidence rate ratios as measures of relative risk. A total of 9170 venous and 24 653 arterial events occurred in 1 112 072 individuals during 13.6 million person-years of follow-up. Compared with blood group O, non-O blood groups were associated with higher incidence of both venous and arterial thromboembolic events. The highest rate ratios were observed for pregnancy-related venous thromboembolism (incidence rate ratio, 2.22; 95% confidence interval, 1.77-2.79), deep vein thrombosis (incidence rate ratio, 1.92; 95% confidence interval, 1.80-2.05), and pulmonary embolism (incidence rate ratio, 1.80; 95% confidence interval, 1.71-1.88).
In this healthy population of blood donors, non-O blood groups explain >30% of venous thromboembolic events. Although ABO blood groups may potentially be used with available prediction systems for identifying at-risk individuals, its clinical utility requires further comparison with other risk markers.
Two hundred ninety-three serum samples from Ontario hemophiliacs and 200 samples from human immunodeficiency virus-positive blood donors were screened for the presence of antibodies to human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, radioimmunoassay, and Western blot techniques. None of the serum samples provided unequivocal positive results, but several samples gave inconclusive results. Of the hemophiliacs with inconclusive serologic results from whom peripheral blood lymphocyte DNA could be obtained, all were negative for HTLV-I and HTLV type II (HTLV-II) sequences as determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). PCR was also performed on a lymph node biopsy sample taken from a hemophiliac who developed a rare T-cell lymphoma; the sample was negative for HTLV-I and -II sequences. These results indicate that Ontario hemophiliacs have not been exposed to HTLV-I or HTLV-II.
In the last several years, West Nile virus (WNV) was proven to be present especially in the neighboring countries of Austria, such as Italy, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, as well as in eastern parts of Austria, where it was detected in migratory and domestic birds. In summer 2010, infections with WNV were reported from Romania and northern Greece with about 150 diseased and increasingly fatal cases. We tested the sera of 1,607 blood donors from North Tyrol (Austria) and South Tyrol (Italy) for antibodies against WNV by using IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Initial results of the ELISA tests showed seroprevalence rates of 46.2% in North Tyrol and 0.5% in South Tyrol, which turned out to be false-positive cross-reactions with antibodies against tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) by adjacent neutralization assays. These results indicate that seropositivity against WNV requires confirmation by neutralization assays, as cross-reactivity with TBEV is frequent and because, currently, WNV is not endemic in the study area.
Since Agaricus blazei Murill (AbM) extract reduced specific IgE and ameliorated a skewed Th1/Th2 balance in a mouse allergy model, it was tested in blood donors with self-reported, IgE-positive, birch pollen allergy and/or asthma. Sixty recruited donors were randomized in a placebo-controlled, double-blinded study with pre-seasonal, 7-week, oral supplementation with the AbM-based extract AndosanTM. Before and after the pollen season, questionnaires were answered for allergic rhino-conjunctivitis, asthma, and medication; serum IgE was measured, and Bet v 1-induced basophil activation was determined by CD63 expression. The reported general allergy and asthma symptoms and medication were significantly reduced in the AbM compared to the placebo group during pollen season. During the season, there was significant reduction in specific IgE anti-Bet v 1 and anti-t3 (birch pollen extract) levels in the AbM compared with the placebo group. While the maximal allergen concentrations needed for eliciting basophil activation before the season, changed significantly in the placebo group to lower concentrations (i.e., enhanced sensitization) after the season, these concentrations remained similar in the AndosanTM AbM extract group. Hence, the prophylactic effect of oral supplementation before the season with the AbM-based AndosanTM extract on aeroallergen-induced allergy was associated with reduced specific IgE levels during the season and basophils becoming less sensitive to allergen activation.
Antibodies against Campylobacter pylori were determined in 500 blood donors aged 18 to 65 years. Acid extract from a C. pylori strain was used as antigen in enzyme immunoassay. The proportion of donors with high antibody titers increased with age. For IgG antibodies it was 10% in the age group from 18 to 25 years but 60% in the group from 56 to 65 years; the increase for IgA and IgM antibodies was from 5 to 42% and from 7 to 21%, respectively. The geometric mean titers of those with high values showed no clear changes with age, which would imply chronic antigenic stimulus.
Eighty three Tyvin patients with local pulmonary tuberculosis and 295 healthy donors of the same nationality were examined. They are resided in the central area of Tyva (in Kyzyl and its vicinities). In addition, 132 healthy Tyvin-Todjins were examined. Tuberculosis mortality was found to be associated with the antigen HLA-B15 in the Tyvins living in the central area of the Republic of Tyva (Kyzyl). The incidence of HLA antigens and polymorphic protein locus genotypes varies in different areas of the Republic of Tyva.