9 research outputs found

    Guidelines for the use and interpretation of assays for monitoring autophagy (4th edition)

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    In 2008, we published the first set of guidelines for standardizing research in autophagy. Since then, this topic has received increasing attention, and many scientists have entered the field. Our knowledge base and relevant new technologies have also been expanding. Thus, it is important to formulate on a regular basis updated guidelines for monitoring autophagy in different organisms. Despite numerous reviews, there continues to be confusion regarding acceptable methods to evaluate autophagy, especially in multicellular eukaryotes. Here, we present a set of guidelines for investigators to select and interpret methods to examine autophagy and related processes, and for reviewers to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of reports that are focused on these processes. These guidelines are not meant to be a dogmatic set of rules, because the appropriateness of any assay largely depends on the question being asked and the system being used. Moreover, no individual assay is perfect for every situation, calling for the use of multiple techniques to properly monitor autophagy in each experimental setting. Finally, several core components of the autophagy machinery have been implicated in distinct autophagic processes (canonical and noncanonical autophagy), implying that genetic approaches to block autophagy should rely on targeting two or more autophagy-related genes that ideally participate in distinct steps of the pathway. Along similar lines, because multiple proteins involved in autophagy also regulate other cellular pathways including apoptosis, not all of them can be used as a specific marker for bona fide autophagic responses. Here, we critically discuss current methods of assessing autophagy and the information they can, or cannot, provide. Our ultimate goal is to encourage intellectual and technical innovation in the field

    Paediatric COVID-19 mortality: a database analysis of the impact of health resource disparity

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    Background The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on paediatric populations varied between high-income countries (HICs) versus low-income to middle-income countries (LMICs). We sought to investigate differences in paediatric clinical outcomes and identify factors contributing to disparity between countries.Methods The International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infections Consortium (ISARIC) COVID-19 database was queried to include children under 19 years of age admitted to hospital from January 2020 to April 2021 with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Univariate and multivariable analysis of contributing factors for mortality were assessed by country group (HICs vs LMICs) as defined by the World Bank criteria.Results A total of 12 860 children (3819 from 21 HICs and 9041 from 15 LMICs) participated in this study. Of these, 8961 were laboratory-confirmed and 3899 suspected COVID-19 cases. About 52% of LMICs children were black, and more than 40% were infants and adolescent. Overall in-hospital mortality rate (95% CI) was 3.3% [=(3.0% to 3.6%), higher in LMICs than HICs (4.0% (3.6% to 4.4%) and 1.7% (1.3% to 2.1%), respectively). There were significant differences between country income groups in intervention profile, with higher use of antibiotics, antivirals, corticosteroids, prone positioning, high flow nasal cannula, non-invasive and invasive mechanical ventilation in HICs. Out of the 439 mechanically ventilated children, mortality occurred in 106 (24.1%) subjects, which was higher in LMICs than HICs (89 (43.6%) vs 17 (7.2%) respectively). Pre-existing infectious comorbidities (tuberculosis and HIV) and some complications (bacterial pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome and myocarditis) were significantly higher in LMICs compared with HICs. On multivariable analysis, LMIC as country income group was associated with increased risk of mortality (adjusted HR 4.73 (3.16 to 7.10)).Conclusion Mortality and morbidities were higher in LMICs than HICs, and it may be attributable to differences in patient demographics, complications and access to supportive and treatment modalities