The number of people living with undiagnosed HIV is increasing in the WHO European Region. According to data published today by ECDC and the WHO/Europe, more than 136 000 people were newly diagnosed in 2019 - roughly 20% of these diagnoses were in the EU/EAA and 80% in the eastern part of the European Region. Every second HIV diagnosis (53%) happens at a late stage of the infection, when the immune system has already started to fail.
The lives of patients hospitalised with COVID-19 are being saved by doctors who are using an existing medical treatment at an earlier stage. Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) in the first days of hospitalisation seems to save between 10% to 20% of patients. The researchers also found that the early use of CPAP potentially reduces lung damage during the worst of the COVID-19 infection and allows the patient to recover from the inflammatory effects.
Lung tissue of patients who suffered severely from COVID-19 shows good recovery in most cases. This was revealed by a study carried out by the Radboud university medical center that has now been published in Clinical Infectious Diseases. A striking conclusion is that the group who was referred by a GP did not recover as well as patients who were admitted to the hospital's Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
None of the mutations currently documented in the SARS-CoV-2 virus appear to increase its transmissibility in humans, according to a study led by UCL researchers, published in Nature Communications.
In mid-March, public health officials across the San Francisco area issued the first US regional shelter-in-place order in response to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic. A 'field report' on the crisis decision-making approach followed in that effective early response is featured in a special COVID-19 supplement to the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice. The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.
Currently, there are over 10 million confirmed cases and more than 240,000 casualties attributed to COVID-19 in the U.S. Researchers at Louisiana State University have applied computational models to investigate infection rates in relation to social distancing measures. Their paper, Effect of mitigation measures on the spreading of COVID-19 in hard-hit states in the US, was recently published in PLOS ONE.
Launched under the aegis of the Research Luxembourg COVID-19 Task Force on April 24th, "Predi-COVID " is a cohort study promoted by the Luxembourg Institute of Health that aims to identify the key risk factors and biomarkers associated with COVID-19 severity and comprehend the long-term health consequences of the disease. The protocol of the study was published on November 24th in the British Medical Journal Open, reinforcing the international visibility and success of this highly collaborative "Made in Luxembourg" project.
An interdisciplinary team from the University of Geneva and the ETH Zürich spin-off Meteodat investigated possible interactions between acutely elevated levels of fine particulate matter and the virulence of the coronavirus disease. Their results suggest that high concentrations of particles less than 2.5 micrometers in size may modulate, or even amplify, the waves of SARS-CoV-2 contamination and explain in part the particular profile of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Using face masks to help slow the spread of COVID-19 has been widely recommended by health professionals. This has triggered studies of the materials, design, and other issues affecting the way face masks work. In Physics of Fluids, investigators looked at research on face masks and their use and summarized what we know about the way they filter or block the virus. They also summarize design issues that still need to be addressed.
To find out how the COVID-19 virus survives on surfaces, researchers are exploring the drying times of thin liquid films that persist after most respiratory droplets evaporate. While the drying time of typical respiratory droplets is on the order of seconds, the survival time of the COVID-19 virus was on the order of hours. In Physics of Fluids, the researchers describe how a nanometers-thick liquid film clings to the surface, allowing the virus to survive.