Cervical cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the world and more than 85% of cervical cancer cases occur in women living in developing countries. Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection is the major cause of cervical cancer. Since 2006, two prophylactic vaccines against the high-risk strains of HPV have been developed and approved in more than 100 countries around the world. However, in China, HPV vaccines are still under clinical trials for government approval. In this paper feasibility and justification of HPV vaccine introduction into China is examined by reviewing experiences in both developed and developing countries where the vaccination program has been implemented. The vaccination program has showed significant cost-effectiveness and great health and economic impacts on cervical cancer prevention and control in both high-income and middle- and low-income countries. On the other hand, based on the lessons from both developed and developing countries, secondary prevention alone cannot fully play a role to reduce the incidence and the disease burden, and neither does the vaccination program. The epidemiological characteristics in China suggest an urgent need to introduce the vaccines and the geographically diversified prevalence of oncogenic HPV types as well as socioeconomic status also highlight the importance of region-driven approaches for cervical cancer prevention and control by integration of a screening and vaccination program.
From March 31 to May 31, 2013, 132 cases of humans were infected with the H7N9 avian influenza virus, 39 of which resulted in death in China, which sparked global concerns about public health. Fortunately, no new case was reported in China since May 8, which seems like to make it step into a stable stage, and the emergency response to the event launched by Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Shandong, and Hu'nan of China have been terminated currently. However, on July 20 and August 10, two new cases were reported from two provinces - Hebei and Guangdong - where no case was reported during the period of spring of 2013. The emerged two new cases rung an alarm bell, thus, the continued public health response cannot let down its guard. Based on our before studies, we found that live poultry purchasing habits, poultry handling, and living conditions increase the risk of exposure to H7N9 virus contaminated environments in China. Due to the difficulty in changing live poultry purchasing habits and in thoroughly removing or closing live poultry markets in China, we suggest that enhanced regulation of poultry markets would be a more feasible and effective strategy to fight against H7N9 virus infection in China. Moreover, in view of the fact that frequent and inevitable contact between rural residents and poultry where rural residents lived also exists due to poultry handling and living conditions, the enhanced regulations on environmental health are also needed for free-range poultry, especially in rural areas.
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is an intractable disease with a median survival time of 2 to 3 years. Serum levels of Krebs von den Lungen-6 (KL-6), surfactant protein A (SP-A), and surfactant protein D (SP-D) are useful biomarkers for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and they are widely used in Japan. Based on clinical use in Japan, a combination of KL-6, SP-A, and SP-D is useful at diagnosing interstitial lung diseases and predicting the prognoses for patients with these diseases. However, the differential diagnosis of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis from other interstitial lung diseases is still challenging. Several other biomarkers have been identified and are being studied in Japan.
Vaccines are one of the most important achievements in public health, and a major contributor to this success is the Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI). The effective vaccination series of the EPI should be used by its target population. Various factors influence the utilization of the EPI vaccination series. In Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), immunization coverage was lower than the regional average. This study evaluates risk factors affecting immunization underutilization among children five to nine years of age. It is a cross-sectional study from nationwide, population-based, multistage cluster sampling. The children who have received 'standard six' antigens and those who have been partially immunized are compared. In a bivariate analysis, household occupation, maternal age, means of transportation, time to the nearest health facilities, the child's birthplace, birth attended by medical staff, and notification of vaccination date by medical staff, village authority, or megaphone were associated with vaccination status. The final multivariate logistic regression model revealed that maternal age and notification of vaccination date by the village authority increased the odds of full vaccination, while notification of vaccination date by megaphone had decreased those odds. Further detailed qualitative research may be needed to discover how maternal sociodemographic factors influence the utilization of these services. Future research needs to target younger children and must include health care provider factors related to vaccination services.
To study the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) protein profiles of tuberculous meningitis (TBM) and discover potential biomarkers for TBM, differential expression of proteins in the CSF of patients with TBM, patients with cryptococcal meningitis, and a control group were compared using isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation labelling (iTRAQ) coupled with 2-dimensional liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS). As a result, a total of 208 unique proteins with a molecular weight ranging from 10 KD to 135 KD were identified and quantified in CSF samples from patients with TBM. Of the proteins, 9 were expressed at levels differing 2.0 fold, 6 were up-regulated, and 3 were down-regulated. These proteins appear to be involved in calcium ion binding, lipoprotein metabolism, immune response, and signal conduction. Two differentially expressed proteins were identified using ELISA. The present study represents the successful use of iTRAQ to examine CSF from patients with TBM. The differentially expressed proteins identified may be potential diagnostic biomarkers and provide valuable insight into the underlying mechanisms of TBM. This study also demonstrated that the differential protein profiles of diseases can be quickly determined using iTRAQ-LC-MS, a potential method for quantitative comparative proteomics.
Atrazine (ATR), one of the most widely used herbicides worldwide, has caused a series of toxicological and environmental problems. This study sought to investigate the effects of ATR on the immune system of mice. Four-week-old female C57B l/6 mice were treated with 5, 25, and 125 mg/kg ATR for 28 days. On day 29, blood was collected and the spleen was harvested to detect lymphocyte transformation, natural killer (NK) cell activity, cellular phenotypes, and cytokines. Results indicated that the thymus and spleen weights decreased after ATR treatment, and the spleen was found to be more sensitive to ATR than the thymus. Decreases in lymphocyte transformation and NK cell activity were also observed in mice treated with 25 mg/kg ATR and 125 mg/kg ATR compared to the control group. In addition, there were also alterations of lymphocyte phenotypes in the spleen, and the percentages of CD3+ and CD4+ cells decreased in mice treated with 25 mg/kg ATR and 125 mg/kg ATR compared to the control group. Moreover, serum interleukin-4 level decreased significantly after treatment with 25 mg/kg and 125 mg/kg ATR, but ATR did not affect the expression of interleukin-2, interferon-γ, and tumor necrosis factor-α. These results suggest that ATR may have induced damage in spleen cells. As ATR is an environmental contaminant, its immunosuppressive action raises concerns that it may potentiate clinical conditions such as tumors, inflammation, and infections. Thus, it needs to be carefully monitored and studied.
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