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    Zika virus infection in pregnancy: a protocol for the joint analysis of the prospective cohort studies of the ZIKAlliance, ZikaPLAN and ZIKAction consortia

    By A E Ades, Elizabeth B Brickley, Neal Alexander, David Brown, Thomas Jaenisch, Demócrito de Barros Miranda-Filho, Moritz Pohl, Kerstin D Rosenberger, Antoni Soriano-Arandes , Claire Thorne et al


    Zika virus (ZIKV) infection in pregnancy has been associated with microcephaly and severe neurological damage to the fetus. Our aim is to document the risks of adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes and the prevalence of laboratory markers of congenital infection in deliveries to women experiencing ZIKV infection during pregnancy, using data from European Commission-funded prospective cohort studies in 20 centres in 11 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean.

    Published in BMJ Journals 2020 Dec 15

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    Vertical transmission of Zika virus and its outcomes: a Bayesian synthesis of prospective studies

    By A E Ades, Antoni Soriano-Arandes, Ana Alarcon, Francesco Bonfante, Claire Thorne, Catherine S Peckham, Carlo Giaquinto

    Prospective studies of Zika virus in pregnancy have reported rates of congenital Zika syndrome and other adverse outcomes by trimester. However, Zika virus can infect and damage the fetus early in utero, but clear before delivery. The true vertical transmission rate is therefore unknown. We aimed to provide the first estimates of underlying vertical transmission rates and adverse outcomes due to congenital infection with Zika virus by trimester of exposure. Methods This was a Bayesian latent class analysis of data from seven prospective studies of Zika virus in pregnancy. We estimated vertical transmission rates, rates of Zika-virus-related and non-Zika-virus-related adverse outcomes, and the diagnostic sensitivity of markers of congenital infection. We allowed for variation between studies in these parameters

    Published in:  The Lancet 2020 Oct 14

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    Celia Christie Samuels on COVID-19 in the Caribbean
    Celia Christie Samuels on COVID-19 in the Caribbean

    Celia Christie Samuels from the University of West Indies, provided her perspective on COVID-19 in the Caribbean in the recent webinar hosted by the Commonwealth Medical Association on the regional perspectives on clinical case management of COVID-19 , introduced by WHO Director General, Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus on 1 July 2020.

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    Clinical outcomes of a Zika virus mother–child pair cohort in Spain

    By Soriano-Arandes A, Frick MA, García López-Hortelano M, et al.

    Zika virus (ZIKV) infection has been associated with congenital microcephaly and other neurodevelopmental abnormalities. There is little published research on the effect of maternal ZIKV infection in a non-endemic European region. We aimed to describe the outcomes of pregnant travelers diagnosed as ZIKV-infected in Spain, and their exposed children. This prospective observational cohort study of nine referral hospitals enrolled pregnant women (PW) who travelled to endemic areas during their pregnancy or the two previous months, or those whose sexual partners visited endemic areas in the previous 6 months. Infants of ZIKV-infected mothers were followed for about two years.

    Published in: Pathogens 2020;9(5):E352

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    Genomic and epidemiological surveillance of Zika virus in the Amazon region

    By Giovanetti M, Faria NR, Lourenco J, et al.

    Zika virus (ZIKV) has caused an explosive epidemic linked to severe clinical outcomes in the Americas. As of June 2018, 4,929 ZIKV suspected infections and 46 congenital syndrome cases had been reported in Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil. Although Manaus is a key demographic hub in the Amazon region, little is known about the ZIKV epidemic there, in terms of both transmission and viral genetic diversity. Using portable virus genome sequencing, we generated 59 ZIKV genomes in Manaus. Phylogenetic analyses indicated multiple introductions of ZIKV from northeastern Brazil to Manaus. Spatial genomic analysis of virus movement among six areas in Manaus suggested that populous northern neighborhoods acted as sources of virus transmission to other neighborhoods.

    Published in: Cell Rep. 2020;30(7):2275-2283

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    Researching Zika in pregnancy: lessons for global preparedness

    By: Ades AE, Thorne C, Soriano-Arandes A, et al.

    Our understanding of congenital infections is based on prospective studies of women infected during pregnancy. The EU has funded three consortia to study Zika virus, each including a prospective study of pregnant women. Another multi-centre study has been funded by the US National Institutes of Health. This Personal View describes the study designs required to research Zika virus, and questions whether funding academics in the EU and USA to work with collaborators in outbreak areas is an effective strategy.


    Published in: Lancet Infect Dis. 2020 Feb 18

    Available for Open Access at UCL Discovery Repository here

    Severity and outcomes of Dengue in hospitalized children from five hospitals in Jamaica during the 2018-2019 epidemic: is this due to antibody dependent immune enhancement from ZIKA virus exposure?

    By Lue A.

    Published in: Oral presentation at 3rd international Conference on Zika Virus and aedes related infections, February 13th – 16th, 2020– Washington DC, USA.