- Assessment of liver fibrosis and associated risk factors in HIV-infected individuals using transient elastography and serum biomarkers (2012)
- Background: Liver fibrosis in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals is mostly attributable to co-infection with hepatitis B or C. The impact of other risk factors, including prolonged exposure to combined antiretroviral therapy (cART) is poorly understood. Our aim was to determine the prevalence of liver fibrosis and associated risk factors in HIV-infected individuals based on non-invasive fibrosis assessment using transient elastography (TE) and serum biomarkers (Fibrotest [FT]). Methods: In 202 consecutive HIV-infected individuals (159 men; mean age 47 ± 9 years; 35 with hepatitis-C-virus [HCV] co-infection), TE and FT were performed. Repeat TE examinations were conducted 1 and 2 years after study inclusion. Results: Significant liver fibrosis was present in 16% and 29% of patients, respectively, when assessed by TE (≥ 7.1 kPa) and FT (> 0.48). A combination of TE and FT predicted significant fibrosis in 8% of all patients (31% in HIV/HCV co-infected and 3% in HIV mono-infected individuals). Chronic ALT, AST and γ-GT elevation was present in 29%, 20% and 51% of all cART-exposed patients and in 19%, 8% and 45.5% of HIV mono-infected individuals. Overall, factors independently associated with significant fibrosis as assessed by TE (OR, 95% CI) were co-infection with HCV (7.29, 1.95-27.34), chronic AST (6.58, 1.30-33.25) and γ-GT (5.17, 1.56-17.08) elevation and time on dideoxynucleoside therapy (1.01, 1.00-1.02). In 68 HIV mono-infected individuals who had repeat TE examinations, TE values did not differ significantly during a median follow-up time of 24 months (median intra-patient changes at last TE examination relative to baseline: -0.2 kPa, p = 0.20). Conclusions: Chronic elevation of liver enzymes was observed in up to 45.5% of HIV mono-infected patients on cART. However, only a small subset had significant fibrosis as predicted by TE and FT. There was no evidence for fibrosis progression during follow-up TE examinations.
- Mobile air quality studies (MAQS) in inner cities: particulate matter PM10 levels related to different vehicle driving modes and integration of data into a geographical information program (2012)
- ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Particulate matter (PM) is assumed to exert a major burden on public health. Most studies that address levels of PM use stationary measure systems. By contrast, only few studies measure PM concentrations under mobile conditions to analyze individual exposure situations. METHODS: By combining spatial-temporal analysis with a novel vehicle-mounted sensor system, the present Mobile Air Quality Study (MAQS) aimed to analyse effects of different driving conditions in a convertible vehicle. PM10 was continuously monitored in a convertible car, driven with roof open, roof closed, but windows open, or windows closed. RESULTS: PM10 values inside the car were nearly always higher with open roof than with roof and windows closed, whereas no difference was seen with open or closed windows. During the day PM10 values varied with high values before noon, and occasional high median values or standard deviation values due to individual factors. Vehicle speed in itself did not influence the mean value of PM10; however, at traffic speed (10 -- 50 km/h) the standard deviation was large. No systematic difference was seen between PM10 values in stationary and mobile cars, nor was any PM10 difference observed between driving within or outside an environmental (low emission) zone. CONCLUSIONS: he present study has shown the feasibility of mobile PM analysis in vehicles. Individual exposure of the occupants varies depending on factors like time of day as well as ventilation of the car; other specific factors are clearly identifiably and may relate to specific PM10 sources. This system may be used to monitor individual exposure ranges and provide recommendations for preventive measurements. Although differences in PM10 levels were found under certain ventilation conditions, these differences likely are not of concern for the safety and health of passengers.
- Nevirapine (NVP), tenofovir (TDF) and lamivudine (3TC) or emtricitabine (FTC) is effective and well tolerated in naïve HIV-1 infected patients (2008)
- Poster presentation: Background The combination of stavudine (d4T), 3TC and NVP was the WHO recommended first-line regimen for the treatment of naïve HIV-1 infected patients in resource-limited settings. But peripheral polyneuropathy, lipoatrophy and symptomatic hyperlactatemia are frequent and treatment-limiting adverse events associated with stavudine, especially when combined with antituberculous drugs. Tenofovir combined with lamivudine and efavirenz has proven excellent efficacy, but there is little experience when given with NVP. Methods Retrospective analysis of all patients receiving TDF, NVP and 3TC or FTC as first-line treatment in the Frankfurt HIV cohort. Summary of results 70 patients (15 female) with a median CD4 cell count of 210/micro l (47–949) and HIV-RNA PCR of 140,000 copies/ml (2,500–2,000,000) at baseline received TDF, NVP and 3TC/FTC, and were treated for a median of 68 weeks (16–278). CD4 cells rose up to cells/micro l 322 (119–1075) and 75% of the patients remained on treatment. All patients on treatment at week 48 were <50 c/ml, even those starting with CD4 cells of <200 cells/micro l or a HIV-RNA PCR >100,000 c/m. Reasons for discontinuation (24%) were mainly adverse events (13%), with rash (7%) and liver toxicity (6%) being the two most common, whereas virologic failure, drug interaction and non-adherence were all relatively rare (each 3%). Conclusion The combination of NVP, TDF and 3TC or FTC is effective and well tolerated in previously naïve HIV-1 infected patients even when started with low CD4 cell counts (<200/ml) and high viral loads (>100,000 c/ml). In the latest amendment of the WHO guidelines TDF, instead of d4T, is the recommended first-line treatment in resource-limited settings.