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Infection and Immunity nieuws

Infection and Immunity nieuws

Jul 27: Automated surveillance of healthcare-associated infections

Automated surveillance of healthcare-associated infections uses routine-care data stored in electronic health records (EHR) to identify patients who (may) have developed a HAI. These systems reduce the workload of manual surveillance, thereby freeing up infection control practitioners' time; in addition, it can provide better standardization of surveillance results by facilitating data collection and standardizing case ascertainment.

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Jul 2: UMC Utrecht starts clinical trial into possible corona treatment

A phase 2 clinical study with a new drug candidate in adults with a corona infection will start on July 5 at UMC Utrecht. The drug, ensovibep, should accelerate the recovery from corona and prevent the need for (urgent) hospital care.

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Jul 1: Antibody measurement does not predict clinical outcomes in chronic Q-fever

Measurement of IgG antibodies against the bacterium Coxiella burnetii does not reliably predict disease-related events or therapy failure during treatment and follow-up of patients with chronic Q-fever. Alternative markers for disease management are therefore needed. For the time being, management of patients with chronic Q-fever should be based on clinical factors, PCR test results, and imaging results. This was concluded in a Dutch study that has now been published in Clinical Microbiology and Infection.

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Jun 29: Antiplatelet therapy not effective in treating critically ill COVID-19 patients

For patients with COVID-19 who are receiving organ support in an intensive care unit (ICU), antiplatelet therapy, either with aspirin or P2Y12 inhibitor (which were found to be equivalent), was ineffective at improving the composite endpoint of death and organ support free days when compared to no antiplatelet therapy.

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Jun 28: Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis fall within a spectrum of one single disease

Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis (PsA) have a predominantly shared genetic background and overlapping immunologic and proteomic signature. This confirms their denomination as falling within a spectrum of one single disease, as was concluded by Emmerik Leijten in his PhD thesis that he will defend on June 29 at Utrecht university.

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Jun 22: Basic research at UMC Utrecht contributes to candidate anticancer drug

Investigators at UMC Utrecht and biopharmaceutical company NextCure have published preclinical data on the LAIR family of molecules. A novel first-in-class medicine, NC410, was designed to block immune suppression mediated by LAIR-1, an immunomodulatory receptor expressed on T cells and myeloid cells, including dendritic cells. The candidate drug is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1/2 clinical study in patients with advanced or metastatic solid tumors.

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Jun 4: Towards a better understanding of ‘difficult-to-treat’ rheumatoid arthritis

Despite significant progress in the management of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), approximately 5-20 percent of patients do not respond well to treatment (known as ‘difficult-to-treat’ RA). In her PhD research, Nadia Roodenrijs focused on this specific patient population, to define and improve our understanding of difficult-to-treat RA. This has resulted in uniform terminology and a clear definition of this patient group as well as European management recommendations specific for difficult-to-treat RA.

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Jun 1: José Borghans appointed Professor of Quantitative Immunology

Principal investigator José Borghans of the Center for Translational Immunology (CTI), whose research interests include immunological memory in humans, has been appointed Professor of Quantitative Immunology with effect from June 1. “For me, the core of this chair is integrating mathematics and immunology in the lab.”

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May 29: Research into the use of corona self-tests when secondary schools reopen

UMC Utrecht has been commissioned by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) to investigate the use of corona self-tests in secondary schools in the Netherlands. They have calculated what effects on infections in schools can be expected when education takes place with complete physical presence in the class room. It was examined whether the use of frequent self-testing and vaccination could counteract an increase in infections.

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May 10: Immunotherapy for high-risk neuroblastoma affects fighting capacity of the immune system

In children with high-risk neuroblastoma, immunotherapy results in both stimulatory and inhibitory effects on the immune system. This finding by researchers from UMC Utrecht and the Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology in Utrecht provides new insights for improvement of therapy timing as well as new therapy strategies enhancing immune cell fighting capacity.

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