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Marc Fischer - Top 30 Publications

Investigation of Acute Flaccid Paralysis Reported with La Crosse Virus Infection, Ohio, USA, 2008-2014.

Infection with La Crosse virus can cause meningoencephalitis, but it is not known to cause acute flaccid paralysis (AFP). During 2008-2014, nine confirmed or probable La Crosse virus disease cases with possible AFP were reported in Ohio, USA. After an epidemiologic and clinical investigation, we determined no patients truly had AFP.

Ability to serologically confirm recent Zika virus infection in areas with varying past incidence of dengue virus infection - United States and territories, 2016.

Background. Cross-reactivity within flavivirus antibody assays, produced by shared epitopes in the envelope proteins, can complicate serological diagnosis of Zika virus (ZIKAV) infection. We assessed the utility of the plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) to confirm recent ZIKAV infections and rule out misleading positive IgM results in areas with varying past dengue virus (DENV) infection incidence. Methods. We reviewed PRNT results of sera collected for diagnosis of ZIKAV infection from January 1 through August 31, 2016 with positive ZIKAV IgM results and ZIKAV and DENV PRNT performed. PRNT result interpretations included ZIKAV, unspecified flavivirus, DENV infection, or negative. For this analysis, ZIKAV IgM was considered false-positive for samples interpreted as DENV infection or negative. Results. In US states, 208 (27%) of 759 IgM positives were confirmed as ZIKAV, compared to 11 (21%) of 52 in the US Virgin Islands (USVI), 15 (15%) of 103 in American Samoa, and 13 (11%) of 123 in Puerto Rico. In American Samoa and Puerto Rico, more than 80% of IgM positives were unspecified flavivirus infections. The false-positivity rate was 27% in US states, 18% in USVI, 2% in American Samoa, and 6% in Puerto Rico. Conclusions. In US states, PRNT provided a virus-specific diagnosis or ruled out infection in the majority of IgM positive samples. Almost a third of ZIKAV IgM positive results did not confirm; therefore, providers and patients must understand that IgM results are preliminary. In territories with historically higher DENV transmission, PRNT usually could not differentiate between ZIKAV and DENV infections.

Update: Interim Guidance for the Diagnosis, Evaluation, and Management of Infants with Possible Congenital Zika Virus Infection - United States, October 2017.

CDC has updated its interim guidance for U.S. health care providers caring for infants with possible congenital Zika virus infection (1) in response to recently published updated guidance for health care providers caring for pregnant women with possible Zika virus exposure (2), unknown sensitivity and specificity of currently available diagnostic tests for congenital Zika virus infection, and recognition of additional clinical findings associated with congenital Zika virus infection. All infants born to mothers with possible Zika virus exposure* during pregnancy should receive a standard evaluation at birth and at each subsequent well-child visit including a comprehensive physical examination, age-appropriate vision screening and developmental monitoring and screening using validated tools (3-5), and newborn hearing screen at birth, preferably using auditory brainstem response (ABR) methodology (6). Specific guidance for laboratory testing and clinical evaluation are provided for three clinical scenarios in the setting of possible maternal Zika virus exposure: 1) infants with clinical findings consistent with congenital Zika syndrome regardless of maternal testing results, 2) infants without clinical findings consistent with congenital Zika syndrome who were born to mothers with laboratory evidence of possible Zika virus infection,(†) and 3) infants without clinical findings consistent with congenital Zika syndrome who were born to mothers without laboratory evidence of possible Zika virus infection. Infants in the first two scenarios should receive further testing and evaluation for Zika virus, whereas for the third group, further testing and clinical evaluation for Zika virus are not recommended. Health care providers should remain alert for abnormal findings (e.g., postnatal-onset microcephaly and eye abnormalities without microcephaly) in infants with possible congenital Zika virus exposure without apparent abnormalities at birth.

Airborne Methane Emission Measurements for Selected Oil and Gas Facilities Across California.

We report 65 individual measurements of methane emissions from 24 oil and gas facilities across California. Methane emission rates were estimated using in situ methane and wind velocity measurements from a small aircraft by a novel Gauss' Theorem flux integral approach. The estimates are compared with annual mean emissions reported to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) through their respective greenhouse gas reporting programs. The average emissions from 36 measurements of 10 gas storage facilities were within a factor of 2 of emissions reported to USEPA or CARB, though large variance was observed and the reporting database did not contain all of the facilities. In contrast, average emissions from 15 measurements of the three refineries were roughly an order of magnitude more than reported to the USEPA or CARB. The remaining measurements suggest compressor emissions are variable and perhaps slightly larger than reported, and emissions from one oil production facility were roughly concordant with a separate (not GHG reporting) bottom-up estimate from other work. Together, these results provide an initial facility-specific survey of methane emissions from California oil and natural gas infrastructure with observed variability suggesting the need for expanded measurements in the future.

Chemical Evaluation of Electronic Cigarettes: Multicomponent Analysis of Liquid Refills and their Corresponding Aerosols.

Electronic cigarette use has raised concern worldwide regarding potential health risks and its position in tobacco cessation strategies. As part of any toxicity assessment, the chemical characterization of e-liquids and their related vapors are among fundamental data to be determined. Considering the lack of available reference methods, we developed and validated several analytical procedures in order to conduct a multicomponent analysis of six e-liquid refills and their resultant vapor emissions (generated by a smoking machine), and compared them with tobacco smoke. We combined several techniques including gas-chromatography, high and ultra-performance liquid chromatography and inductively coupled plasma with mass spectrometry or ultraviolet and flame ionization detection in order to identify the main e-liquid constituents (propylene glycol, glycerol and nicotine), as well as multiple potentially harmful components (trace elements, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), pesticides and carbonyl compounds). Regarding propylene glycol, glycerol and nicotine concentrations, the six tested e-liquids comply with the advertised composition and contain only traces of pollutants. Noticeable lower concentrations of trace elements (≤3.4 pg/mL puff), pesticides (<LOQ), PAHs (≤4.1 pg/mL puff) and carbonyls (≤2.11 ng/mL puff) were measured in e-vapors compared to those in cigarette smoke (up to 45.0 pg/mL puff, 8.7 pg/mL puff, 560.8 pg/mL puff and 1540 ng/mL puff, respectively). Although an accurate characterization of electronic cigarette emissions requires further analytical optimizations, our results have shown that vaping exposes the user to lesser amounts of selected toxic components of concern found in some representative French e-cigarette products than does smoking typical conventional cigarettes.

Updated estimation of the impact of a Japanese encephalitis immunization program with live, attenuated SA 14-14-2 vaccine in Nepal.

Japanese encephalitis (JE) is a mosquito-borne disease that is associated with considerable morbidity and mortality in many Asian countries. The objective of this study was to describe the impact of the JE immunization program using SA 14-14-2 JE vaccine implemented in Nepal during 2006 through 2011. A previous assessment after the initial program implementation phase described a significantly lower post-campaign JE incidence compared to expected incidence; however, the previous evaluation had limited post-campaign data for some districts.

Increased rates of Guillain-Barré syndrome associated with Zika virus outbreak in the Salvador metropolitan area, Brazil.

In mid-2015, Salvador, Brazil, reported an outbreak of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), coinciding with the introduction and spread of Zika virus (ZIKV). We found that GBS incidence during April-July 2015 among those ≥12 years of age was 5.6 cases/100,000 population/year and increased markedly with increasing age to 14.7 among those ≥60 years of age. We conducted interviews with 41 case-patients and 85 neighborhood controls and found no differences in demographics or exposures prior to GBS-symptom onset. A higher proportion of case-patients (83%) compared to controls (21%) reported an antecedent illness (OR 18.1, CI 6.9-47.5), most commonly characterized by rash, headache, fever, and myalgias, within a median of 8 days prior to GBS onset. Our investigation confirmed an outbreak of GBS, particularly in older adults, that was strongly associated with Zika-like illness and geo-temporally associated with ZIKV transmission, suggesting that ZIKV may result in severe neurologic complications.

Elliptic Cylinder Airborne Sampling and Geostatistical Mass Balance Approach for Quantifying Local Greenhouse Gas Emissions.

In this study, we explore observational, experimental, methodological, and practical aspects of the flux quantification of greenhouse gases from local point sources by using in situ airborne observations, and suggest a series of conceptual changes to improve flux estimates. We address the major sources of uncertainty reported in previous studies by modifying (1) the shape of the typical flight path, (2) the modeling of covariance and anisotropy, and (3) the type of interpolation tools used. We show that a cylindrical flight profile offers considerable advantages compared to traditional profiles collected as curtains, although this new approach brings with it the need for a more comprehensive subsequent analysis. The proposed flight pattern design does not require prior knowledge of wind direction and allows for the derivation of an ad hoc empirical correction factor to partially alleviate errors resulting from interpolation and measurement inaccuracies. The modified approach is applied to a use-case for quantifying CH4 emission from an oil field south of San Ardo, CA, and compared to a bottom-up CH4 emission estimate.

Evaluation of Placental and Fetal Tissue Specimens for Zika Virus Infection - 50 States and District of Columbia, January-December, 2016.

Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause congenital microcephaly and brain abnormalities (1), and detection of Zika virus RNA in clinical and tissue specimens can provide definitive laboratory evidence of recent Zika virus infection. Whereas duration of viremia is typically short, prolonged detection of Zika virus RNA in placental, fetal, and neonatal brain tissue has been reported and can provide key diagnostic information by confirming recent Zika virus infection (2). In accordance with recent guidance (3,4), CDC provides Zika virus testing of placental and fetal tissues in clinical situations where this information could add diagnostic value. This report describes the evaluation of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue specimens tested for Zika virus infection in 2016 and the contribution of this testing to the public health response. Among 546 live births with possible maternal Zika virus exposure, for which placental tissues were submitted by the 50 states and District of Columbia (DC), 60 (11%) were positive by Zika virus reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Among 81 pregnancy losses for which placental and/or fetal tissues were submitted, 18 (22%) were positive by Zika virus RT-PCR. Zika virus RT-PCR was positive on placental tissues from 38/363 (10%) live births with maternal serologic evidence of recent unspecified flavivirus infection and from 9/86 (10%) with negative maternal Zika virus immunoglobulin M (IgM) where possible maternal exposure occurred >12 weeks before serum collection. These results demonstrate that Zika virus RT-PCR testing of tissue specimens can provide a confirmed diagnosis of recent maternal Zika virus infection.

Comparison of the Mallampati Classification in Sitting and Supine Position to Predict Difficult Tracheal Intubation: A Prospective Observational Cohort Study.

The Mallampati classification (MLPT) is normally evaluated in the sitting position. However, many patients cannot be evaluated in the sitting position for medical reasons. Thus, we compared the MLPT in sitting and supine positions in predicting difficult tracheal intubation (DTI). We hypothesized that the diagnostic accuracy of the MLPT performed in sitting and supine positions would differ.

Cost effectiveness of a targeted age-based West Nile virus vaccination program.

West Nile virus (WNV) is the leading cause of domestically-acquired arboviral disease in the United States. Several WNV vaccines are in various stages of development. We estimate the cost-effectiveness of WNV vaccination programs targeting groups at increased risk for severe WNV disease.

High test-retest-reliability of pain-related evoked potentials (PREP) in healthy subjects.

Pain-related evoked potentials (PREP) is an established electrophysiological method to evaluate the signal transmission of electrically stimulated A-delta fibres. Although prerequisite for its clinical use, test-retest-reliability and side-to-side differences of bilateral stimulation in healthy subjects have not been examined yet. We performed PREP twice within 3-14days in 33 healthy subjects bilaterally by stimulating the dorsal hand. Detection (DT) and pain thresholds (PT) after electrical stimulation, the corresponding pain ratings, latencies of P0, N1, P1 and N2 components and the corresponding amplitudes were assessed. Impact of electrically induced pain intensity, age, sex, and arm length on PREP was analysed. MANOVA, t-Test, interclass correlation coefficient (ICC), standard error of measurement (SEM), smallest real difference (SRD), Bland-Altmann-Analysis as well as ANCOVA were used for statistical analysis. Measurement from both sides on both days resulted in mean N1-latencies from 142.39±18.12ms to 144.03±16.62ms and in mean N1P1-amplitudes from 39.04±12.26μV to 40.53±12.9μV. Analysis of a side-to-side effect showed for the N1-latency a F-value of 0.038 and for the N1P1-amplitude of 0.004 (p>0.8). We found intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) from 0.88 to 0.93 and a standard error of measurement (SEM)<10% of mean values for all measurements concerning the N1-Latency and N1P1-amplitude. Intraclass correlation coefficients, standard error of measurement and Bland-Altman-Analyses revealed excellent test-retest-reliability for N1-latency and N1P1-amplitude without systematic error and there was no side-to-side effect on PREP. N1-latency (r=0.35, p<0.05) and N1P1-amplitude (r=-0.45, p<0.05) correlated with age and additionally N1-latency correlated with arm length (r=0.45, p<0.001). In contrast, pain intensity during the stimulation had no effect on both N1-latency and N1P1-amplitude. In summary, PREP showed high test-retest-reliability and negligible side-to-side differences concerning the commonly used parameters N1-latency and N1P1-amplitude.

Chikungunya virus disease outbreak in Yap State, Federated States of Micronesia.

Chikungunya virus is a mosquito-borne alphavirus which causes an acute febrile illness associated with polyarthralgia. Beginning in August 2013, clinicians from the Yap State Department of Health in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) identified an unusual cluster of illness which was subsequently confirmed to be chikungunya virus disease. Chikungunya virus disease previously had not been recognized in FSM.

Introduction of liquid-based cytology and human papillomavirus testing in cervical cancer screening in Luxembourg.

In 2014, liquid-based cytology with HPV triage replaced conventional cytology. The aim of our study was to compare conventional and liquid-based cytology (LBC), estimate the prevalence of abnormal cervical cytology and high risk HPV (hrHPV) infection and their correlation, among screened women in Luxembourg.

West Nile Virus and Other Nationally Notifiable Arboviral Diseases - United States, 2015.

Arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) are transmitted to humans primarily through the bites of infected mosquitoes and ticks. The leading cause of domestically acquired arboviral disease in the United States is West Nile virus (WNV) (1). Other arboviruses, including La Crosse, St. Louis encephalitis, Jamestown Canyon, Powassan, and eastern equine encephalitis viruses, also cause sporadic cases and outbreaks. This report summarizes surveillance data reported to CDC in 2015 for nationally notifiable arboviruses. It excludes dengue, chikungunya, and Zika viruses, which are primarily nondomestic viruses typically acquired through travel (and are addressed in other CDC reports). In 2015, 45 states and the District of Columbia (DC) reported 2,282 cases of domestic arboviral disease. Among these cases, 2,175 (95%) were WNV disease and 1,455 (67%) of those were classified as neuroinvasive disease (meningitis, encephalitis, or acute flaccid paralysis). The national incidence of WNV neuroinvasive disease was 0.45 cases per 100,000 population. Because arboviral diseases continue to cause serious illness, maintaining surveillance is important to direct prevention activities such as reduction of vector populations and screening of blood donors.

Male-to-Female Sexual Transmission of Zika Virus-United States, January-April 2016.

We report on 9 cases of male-to-female sexual transmission of Zika virus in the United States occurring January-April 2016. This report summarizes new information about both timing of exposure and symptoms of sexually transmitted Zika virus disease, and results of semen testing for Zika virus from 2 male travelers.

Gridded National Inventory of U.S. Methane Emissions.

We present a gridded inventory of US anthropogenic methane emissions with 0.1° × 0.1° spatial resolution, monthly temporal resolution, and detailed scale-dependent error characterization. The inventory is designed to be consistent with the 2016 US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Inventory of US Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks (GHGI) for 2012. The EPA inventory is available only as national totals for different source types. We use a wide range of databases at the state, county, local, and point source level to disaggregate the inventory and allocate the spatial and temporal distribution of emissions for individual source types. Results show large differences with the EDGAR v4.2 global gridded inventory commonly used as a priori estimate in inversions of atmospheric methane observations. We derive grid-dependent error statistics for individual source types from comparison with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) regional inventory for Northeast Texas. These error statistics are independently verified by comparison with the California Greenhouse Gas Emissions Measurement (CALGEM) grid-resolved emission inventory. Our gridded, time-resolved inventory provides an improved basis for inversion of atmospheric methane observations to estimate US methane emissions and interpret the results in terms of the underlying processes.

Investigation of a Guillain-Barré syndrome cluster in the Republic of Fiji.

In 2014, we investigated a cluster of Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) in Fiji that occurred during a dengue epidemic. We designed a case-control study to determine the etiology.

Notes from the Field: Outbreak of Zika Virus Disease - American Samoa, 2016.

During December 2015-January 2016, the American Samoa Department of Health (ASDoH) detected through surveillance an increase in the number of cases of acute febrile rash illness. Concurrently, a case of laboratory-confirmed Zika virus infection, a mosquito-borne flavivirus infection documented to cause microcephaly and other severe brain defects in some infants born to women infected during pregnancy (1,2) was reported in a traveler returning to New Zealand from American Samoa. In the absence of local laboratory capacity to test for Zika virus, ASDoH initiated arboviral disease control measures, including public education and vector source reduction campaigns. On February 1, CDC staff members were deployed to American Samoa to assist ASDoH with testing and surveillance efforts.

A dynamic view of dynamic indices.

Dynamic indices (based on cardiopulmonary interactions in mechanically ventilated patients in sinus rhythm) have been developed as simple tools for predicting fluid responsiveness in the absence of cardiac output monitoring. Although the earliest dynamic indices relied on the invasive measurement of pulse pressure variations or stroke volume variations, the most recently developed indices are based on non-invasive photoplethysmography. However, a number of confounding factors have been found which decrease the clinical value of these indices. The present experts' opinion explains why changes in dynamic indices during hemodynamic maneuvers might be an interesting alternative to using them accurately at bedside.

Characteristics of Children Aged <18 Years with Zika Virus Disease Acquired Postnatally - U.S. States, January 2015-July 2016.

Zika virus is an emerging mosquito-borne flavivirus that typically causes an asymptomatic infection or mild illness, although infection during pregnancy is a cause of microcephaly and other serious brain abnormalities. Guillain-Barré syndrome and other neurologic complications can occur in adults after Zika virus infection. However, there are few published reports describing postnatally acquired Zika virus disease among children. During January 2015-July 2016, a total of 158 cases of confirmed or probable postnatally acquired Zika virus disease among children aged <18 years were reported to CDC from U.S. states. The median age was 14 years (range = 1 month-17 years), and 88 (56%) were female. Two (1%) patients were hospitalized; none developed Guillain-Barré syndrome, and none died. All reported cases were travel-associated. Overall, 129 (82%) children had rash, 87 (55%) had fever, 45 (29%) had conjunctivitis, and 44 (28%) had arthralgia. Health care providers should consider a diagnosis of Zika virus disease in children who have an epidemiologic risk factor and clinically compatible illness, and should report cases to their state or local health department.

Local Mosquito-Borne Transmission of Zika Virus - Miami-Dade and Broward Counties, Florida, June-August 2016.

During the first 6 months of 2016, large outbreaks of Zika virus disease caused by local mosquito-borne transmission occurred in Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories, but local mosquito-borne transmission was not identified in the continental United States (1,2). As of July 22, 2016, the Florida Department of Health had identified 321 Zika virus disease cases among Florida residents and visitors, all occurring in either travelers from other countries or territories with ongoing Zika virus transmission or sexual contacts of recent travelers.* During standard case investigation of persons with compatible illness and laboratory evidence of recent Zika virus infection (i.e., a specimen positive by real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction [rRT-PCR], or positive Zika immunoglobulin M [IgM] with supporting dengue serology [negative for dengue IgM antibodies and positive for dengue IgG antibodies], or confirmation of Zika virus neutralizing antibodies by plaque reduction neutralization testing [PRNT]) (3), four persons were identified in Broward and Miami-Dade counties whose infections were attributed to likely local mosquito-borne transmission. Two of these persons worked within 120 meters (131 yards) of each other but had no other epidemiologic connections, suggesting the possibility of a local community-based outbreak. Further epidemiologic and laboratory investigations of the worksites and surrounding neighborhood identified a total of 29 persons with laboratory evidence of recent Zika virus infection and likely exposure during late June to early August, most within an approximate 6-block area. In response to limited impact on the population of Aedes aegypti mosquito vectors from initial ground-based mosquito control efforts, aerial ultralow volume spraying with the organophosphate insecticide naled was applied over a 10 square-mile area beginning in early August and alternated with aerial larviciding with Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies israelensis (Bti), a group biologic control agent, in a central 2 square-mile area. No additional cases were identified after implementation of this mosquito control strategy. No increases in emergency department (ED) patient visits associated with aerial spraying were reported, including visits for asthma, reactive airway disease, wheezing, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. Local and state health departments serving communities where Ae. aegypti, the primary vector of Zika virus, is found should continue to actively monitor for local transmission of the virus.(†).

Zika Virus Disease Cases - 50 States and the District of Columbia, January 1-July 31, 2016.

Zika virus is a mosquito-borne flavivirus primarily transmitted to humans by Aedes aegypti mosquitoes (1). Zika virus infections have also been documented through intrauterine transmission resulting in congenital infection; intrapartum transmission from a viremic mother to her newborn; sexual transmission; blood transfusion; and laboratory exposure (1-5). Most Zika virus infections are asymptomatic (1,6). Clinical illness, when it occurs, is generally mild and characterized by acute onset of fever, maculopapular rash, arthralgia, or nonpurulent conjunctivitis. However, Zika virus infection during pregnancy can cause adverse outcomes such as fetal loss, and microcephaly and other serious brain anomalies (1-3). Guillain-Barré syndrome, a rare autoimmune condition affecting the peripheral nervous system, also has been associated with Zika virus infection (1). Following the identification of local transmission of Zika virus in Brazil in May 2015, the virus has continued to spread throughout the Region of the Americas, and travel-associated cases have increased (7). In 2016, Zika virus disease and congenital infections became nationally notifiable conditions in the United States (8). As of September 3, 2016, a total of 2,382 confirmed and probable cases of Zika virus disease with symptom onset during January 1-July 31, 2016, had been reported from 48 of 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. Most cases (2,354; 99%) were travel-associated, with either direct travel or an epidemiologic link to a traveler to a Zika virus-affected area. Twenty-eight (1%) cases were reported as locally acquired, including 26 associated with mosquito-borne transmission, one acquired in a laboratory, and one with an unknown mode of transmission. Zika virus disease should be considered in patients with compatible clinical signs or symptoms who traveled to or reside in areas with ongoing Zika virus transmission or who had unprotected sex with someone who traveled to those areas. Health care providers should continue to educate patients, especially pregnant women, about the importance of avoiding infection with Zika virus, and all pregnant women should be assessed for possible Zika virus exposure at each prenatal visit (2).

Update: Interim Guidance for the Evaluation and Management of Infants with Possible Congenital Zika Virus Infection - United States, August 2016.

CDC has updated its interim guidance for U.S. health care providers caring for infants born to mothers with possible Zika virus infection during pregnancy (1). Laboratory testing is recommended for 1) infants born to mothers with laboratory evidence of Zika virus infection during pregnancy and 2) infants who have abnormal clinical or neuroimaging findings suggestive of congenital Zika syndrome and a maternal epidemiologic link suggesting possible transmission, regardless of maternal Zika virus test results. Congenital Zika syndrome is a recently recognized pattern of congenital anomalies associated with Zika virus infection during pregnancy that includes microcephaly, intracranial calcifications or other brain anomalies, or eye anomalies, among others (2). Recommended infant laboratory evaluation includes both molecular (real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction [rRT-PCR]) and serologic (immunoglobulin M [IgM]) testing. Initial samples should be collected directly from the infant in the first 2 days of life, if possible; testing of cord blood is not recommended. A positive infant serum or urine rRT-PCR test result confirms congenital Zika virus infection. Positive Zika virus IgM testing, with a negative rRT-PCR result, indicates probable congenital Zika virus infection. In addition to infant Zika virus testing, initial evaluation of all infants born to mothers with laboratory evidence of Zika virus infection during pregnancy should include a comprehensive physical examination, including a neurologic examination, postnatal head ultrasound, and standard newborn hearing screen. Infants with laboratory evidence of congenital Zika virus infection should have a comprehensive ophthalmologic exam and hearing assessment by auditory brainstem response (ABR) testing before 1 month of age. Recommendations for follow-up of infants with laboratory evidence of congenital Zika virus infection depend on whether abnormalities consistent with congenital Zika syndrome are present. Infants with abnormalities consistent with congenital Zika syndrome should have a coordinated evaluation by multiple specialists within the first month of life; additional evaluations will be needed within the first year of life, including assessments of vision, hearing, feeding, growth, and neurodevelopmental and endocrine function. Families and caregivers will also need ongoing psychosocial support and assistance with coordination of care. Infants with laboratory evidence of congenital Zika virus infection without apparent abnormalities should have ongoing developmental monitoring and screening by the primary care provider; repeat hearing testing is recommended. This guidance will be updated when additional information becomes available.

Update: Interim Guidance for Health Care Providers Caring for Pregnant Women with Possible Zika Virus Exposure - United States, July 2016.

CDC has updated its interim guidance for U.S. health care providers caring for pregnant women with possible Zika virus exposure, to include the emerging data indicating that Zika virus RNA can be detected for prolonged periods in some pregnant women. To increase the proportion of pregnant women with Zika virus infection who receive a definitive diagnosis, CDC recommends expanding real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) testing. Possible exposures to Zika virus include travel to or residence in an area with active Zika virus transmission, or sex* with a partner who has traveled to or resides in an area with active Zika virus transmission without using condoms or other barrier methods to prevent infection.(†) Testing recommendations for pregnant women with possible Zika virus exposure who report clinical illness consistent with Zika virus disease(§) (symptomatic pregnant women) are the same, regardless of their level of exposure (i.e., women with ongoing risk for possible exposure, including residence in or frequent travel to an area with active Zika virus transmission, as well as women living in areas without Zika virus transmission who travel to an area with active Zika virus transmission, or have unprotected sex with a partner who traveled to or resides in an area with active Zika virus transmission). Symptomatic pregnant women who are evaluated <2 weeks after symptom onset should receive serum and urine Zika virus rRT-PCR testing. Symptomatic pregnant women who are evaluated 2-12 weeks after symptom onset should first receive a Zika virus immunoglobulin (IgM) antibody test; if the IgM antibody test result is positive or equivocal, serum and urine rRT-PCR testing should be performed. Testing recommendations for pregnant women with possible Zika virus exposure who do not report clinical illness consistent with Zika virus disease (asymptomatic pregnant women) differ based on the circumstances of possible exposure. For asymptomatic pregnant women who live in areas without active Zika virus transmission and who are evaluated <2 weeks after last possible exposure, rRT-PCR testing should be performed. If the rRT-PCR result is negative, a Zika virus IgM antibody test should be performed 2-12 weeks after the exposure. Asymptomatic pregnant women who do not live in an area with active Zika virus transmission, who are first evaluated 2-12 weeks after their last possible exposure should first receive a Zika virus IgM antibody test; if the IgM antibody test result is positive or equivocal, serum and urine rRT-PCR should be performed. Asymptomatic pregnant women with ongoing risk for exposure to Zika virus should receive Zika virus IgM antibody testing as part of routine obstetric care during the first and second trimesters; immediate rRT-PCR testing should be performed when IgM antibody test results are positive or equivocal. This guidance also provides updated recommendations for the clinical management of pregnant women with confirmed or possible Zika virus infection. These recommendations will be updated when additional data become available.

Adverse event reports following yellow fever vaccination, 2007-13.

Yellow fever (YF) vaccines have been available since the 1930s and are generally considered safe and effective. However, rare reports of serious adverse events (SAE) following vaccination have prompted the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices to periodically expand the list of conditions considered contraindications and precautions to vaccination.

Acute Flaccid Myelitis in the United States, August-December 2014: Results of Nationwide Surveillance.

During late summer/fall 2014, pediatric cases of acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) occurred in the United States, coincident with a national outbreak of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68)-associated severe respiratory illness.

Interim Guidance for Interpretation of Zika Virus Antibody Test Results.

Zika virus is a single-stranded RNA virus in the genus Flavivirus and is closely related to dengue, West Nile, Japanese encephalitis, and yellow fever viruses (1,2). Among flaviviruses, Zika and dengue virus share similar symptoms of infection, transmission cycles, and geographic distribution. Diagnostic testing for Zika virus infection can be accomplished using both molecular and serologic methods. For persons with suspected Zika virus disease, a positive real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) result confirms Zika virus infection, but a negative rRT-PCR result does not exclude infection (3-7). In these cases, immunoglobulin (Ig) M and neutralizing antibody testing can identify additional recent Zika virus infections (6,7). However, Zika virus antibody test results can be difficult to interpret because of cross-reactivity with other flaviviruses, which can preclude identification of the specific infecting virus, especially when the person previously was infected with or vaccinated against a related flavivirus (8). This is important because the results of Zika and dengue virus testing will guide clinical management. Pregnant women with laboratory evidence of Zika virus infection should be evaluated and managed for possible adverse pregnancy outcomes and be reported to the U.S. Zika Pregnancy Registry or the Puerto Rico Zika Active Pregnancy Surveillance System for clinical follow-up (9,10). All patients with clinically suspected dengue should have proper management to reduce the risk for hemorrhage and shock (11). If serologic testing indicates recent flavivirus infection that could be caused by either Zika or dengue virus, patients should be clinically managed for both infections because they might have been infected with either virus.

Sensing hydrocarbons with interband cascade lasers and substrate-integrated hollow waveguides.

Tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy (TDLAS) is an excellent analytical technique for gas sensing applications. In situ sensing of relevant hydrocarbon gases is of substantial interest for a variety of in-field scenarios including environmental monitoring and process analysis, ideally providing accurate, molecule specific, and rapid information with minimal sampling requirements. Substrate-integrated hollow waveguides (iHWGs) have demonstrated superior properties for gas sensing applications owing to minimal sample volumes required while simultaneously serving as efficient photon conduits. Interband cascade lasers (ICLs) are recently emerging as mid-infrared light sources operating at room temperature, with low power consumption, and providing excellent potential for integration. Thereby, portable and handheld mid-infrared sensing devices are facilitated. Methane (CH4) is among the most frequently occurring, and thus, highly relevant hydrocarbons requiring in situ emission monitoring by taking advantage of its distinct molecular absorption around 3 μm. Here, an efficient combination of iHWGs with ICLs is presented providing a methane sensor calibrated in the range of 100 to 2000 ppmv with a limit of detection at 38 ppmv at the current stage of development. Furthermore, a measurement precision of 0.62 ppbv during only 1 s of averaging time has been demonstrated, thereby rendering this sensor concept useful for in-line and on-site emission monitoring and process control applications.

Analytical performance evaluation of Anyplex II HPV28 and Euroarray HPV for genotyping of cervical samples.

Analytically accurate human papillomavirus (HPV) genotyping methods are required to assess the impact of HPV vaccination. The aim of this study was to evaluate the analytical performance of Anyplex II HPV28 (Seegene, Korea) and Euroarray HPV (Euroimmun, Germany) genotyping kits, for conducting a future HPV vaccine efficacy monitoring study in Luxembourg. A total number of 150 cervical swabs were collected from women with mean age 31.4 years. Agreements for detecting any HPV between Aptima/Anyplex (88.0%) and Aptima/Euroarray (90.7%) were similar. Agreement of Anyplex/EuroArray with Aptima was higher for Genotypes 16, 18 or 45 than for the other 11 HPVs. The average number of HPV genotypes detected per sample was similar with 2.6 and 2.5, for Anyplex and EuroArray, respectively. In conclusion, Anyplex and Euroarray showed high agreement in general and in particular for detecting genotypes contained in HPV vaccines.