1,534 research outputs found

    Feasibility, drug safety, and effectiveness of etiological treatment programs for Chagas disease in Honduras, Guatemala, and Bolivia: 10-year experience of Médecins Sans Frontières

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    BACKGROUND: Chagas disease (American trypanosomiasis) is a zoonotic or anthropozoonotic disease caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. Predominantly affecting populations in poor areas of Latin America, medical care for this neglected disease is often lacking. Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has provided diagnostic and treatment services for Chagas disease since 1999. This report describes 10 years of field experience in four MSF programs in Honduras, Guatemala, and Bolivia, focusing on feasibility protocols, safety of drug therapy, and treatment effectiveness. METHODOLOGY: From 1999 to 2008, MSF provided free diagnosis, etiological treatment, and follow-up care for patients <18 years of age seropositive for T. cruzi in Yoro, Honduras (1999-2002); Olopa, Guatemala (2003-2006); Entre Ríos, Bolivia (2002-2006); and Sucre, Bolivia (2005-2008). Essential program components guaranteeing feasibility of implementation were information, education, and communication (IEC) at the community and family level; vector control; health staff training; screening and diagnosis; treatment and compliance, including family-based strategies for early detection of adverse events; and logistics. Chagas disease diagnosis was confirmed by testing blood samples using two different diagnostic tests. T. cruzi-positive patients were treated with benznidazole as first-line treatment, with appropriate counseling, consent, and active participation from parents or guardians for daily administration of the drug, early detection of adverse events, and treatment withdrawal, when necessary. Weekly follow-up was conducted, with adverse events recorded to assess drug safety. Evaluations of serological conversion were carried out to measure treatment effectiveness. Vector control, entomological surveillance, and health education activities were carried out in all projects with close interaction with national and regional programs. RESULTS: Total numbers of children and adolescents tested for T. cruzi in Yoro, Olopa, Entre Ríos, and Sucre were 24,471, 8,927, 7,613, and 19,400, respectively. Of these, 232 (0.9%), 124 (1.4%), 1,475 (19.4%), and 1,145 (5.9%) patients, respectively, were diagnosed as seropositive. Patients were treated with benznidazole, and early findings of seroconversion varied widely between the Central and South American programs: 87.1% and 58.1% at 18 months post-treatment in Yoro and Olopa, respectively; 5.4% by up to 60 months in Entre Ríos; and 0% at an average of 18 months in Sucre. Benznidazole-related adverse events were observed in 50.2% and 50.8% of all patients treated in Yoro and Olopa, respectively, and 25.6% and 37.9% of patients in Entre Ríos and Sucre, respectively. Most adverse events were mild and manageable. No deaths occurred in the treatment population. CONCLUSIONS: These results demonstrate the feasibility of implementing Chagas disease diagnosis and treatment programs in resource-limited settings, including remote rural areas, while addressing the limitations associated with drug-related adverse events. The variability in apparent treatment effectiveness may reflect differences in patient and parasite populations, and illustrates the limitations of current treatments and measures of efficacy. New treatments with improved safety profiles, pediatric formulations of existing and new drugs, and a faster, reliable test of cure are all urgently needed

    Evidence of traffic-generated air pollution in Havana

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    In Havana, transport is blamed as a likely source of pollution issues, which is usually supported on arguments referring to a vehicle fleet mainly made of old cars (i.e., most models are American from the 1950s or Russian from the 1980s) with poor technical conditions. Most of the existing studies are based on measurements from passive samplers collected for 24 h, which may not be representative of conditions where pollutant concentrations (particles or gases) fluctuate or are not homogeneous, such as transport-related pollution. The goal of this paper is to explore the transport-generated pollution by examining short-time correlations between traffic flows, pollutant concentrations and meteorological parameters. To do that, statistical relationships among all variables were analyzed, which revealed that PM10, NO2 and SO2 concentration levels are influenced by vehicular traffic, mainly with low-speed winds blowing perpendicular to the street axis. Furthermore, southeast and northeast winds force drag pollution from sources other than traffic. These conclusions depend on the specific conditions of the summer season at the measurement area. A more complete analysis could be conducted when more data becomes available for each season

    Constraints on the χ_(c1) versus χ_(c2) polarizations in proton-proton collisions at √s = 8 TeV

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    The polarizations of promptly produced χ_(c1) and χ_(c2) mesons are studied using data collected by the CMS experiment at the LHC, in proton-proton collisions at √s=8  TeV. The χ_c states are reconstructed via their radiative decays χ_c → J/ψγ, with the photons being measured through conversions to e⁺e⁻, which allows the two states to be well resolved. The polarizations are measured in the helicity frame, through the analysis of the χ_(c2) to χ_(c1) yield ratio as a function of the polar or azimuthal angle of the positive muon emitted in the J/ψ → μ⁺μ⁻ decay, in three bins of J/ψ transverse momentum. While no differences are seen between the two states in terms of azimuthal decay angle distributions, they are observed to have significantly different polar anisotropies. The measurement favors a scenario where at least one of the two states is strongly polarized along the helicity quantization axis, in agreement with nonrelativistic quantum chromodynamics predictions. This is the first measurement of significantly polarized quarkonia produced at high transverse momentum

    A Field Trial of Alternative Targeted Screening Strategies for Chagas Disease in Arequipa, Peru

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    In the wake of emerging T. cruzi infection in children of periurban Arequipa, Peru, we conducted a prospective field trial to evaluate alternative targeted screening strategies for Chagas disease across the city. Using insect vector data that is routinely collected during Ministry of Health insecticide application campaigns in 3 periurban districts of Arequipa, we separated into 4 categories those households with 1) infected vectors; 2) high vector densities; 3) low vector densities; and 4) no vectors. Residents of all infected-vector households and a random sample of those in the other 3 categories were invited for serological screening for T. cruzi infection. Subsequently, all residents of households within a 15-meter radius of detected seropositive individuals were invited to be screened in a ring case-detection scheme. Of 923 participants, 21 (2.28%) were seropositive. There were no significant differences in prevalence across the 4 screening strategies, indicating that household entomologic factors alone could not predict the risk of infection. Indeed, the most predictive variable of infection was the number of years a person lived in a location with triatomine insects. Therefore, a simple residence history questionnaire may be a useful screening tool in large, diverse urban environments with emerging Chagas disease

    The Pixel Luminosity Telescope: a detector for luminosity measurement at CMS using silicon pixel sensors

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    The Pixel Luminosity Telescope is a silicon pixel detector dedicated to luminosity measurement at the CMS experiment at the LHC. It is located approximately 1.75 m from the interaction point and arranged into 16 “telescopes”, with eight telescopes installed around the beam pipe at either end of the detector and each telescope composed of three individual silicon sensor planes. The per-bunch instantaneous luminosity is measured by counting events where all three planes in the telescope register a hit, using a special readout at the full LHC bunch-crossing rate of 40 MHz. The full pixel information is read out at a lower rate and can be used to determine calibrations, corrections, and systematic uncertainties for the online and offline measurements. This paper details the commissioning, operational history, and performance of the detector during Run 2 (2015–18) of the LHC, as well as preparations for Run 3, which will begin in 2022

    The production of isolated photons in PbPb and pp collisions at sNN \sqrt{s_{\mathrm{NN}}} = 5.02 TeV