Clinical Microbiology Issues Update - August 2014

PSAB ACTIVITIES

  •  ASM President Asks “What’s in Your Laboratory Freezer?”
  • Committee on Laboratory Practices Drafts Interim Ebola Guideline
  • Committee on Laboratory Practices Prepares Listeria Guidance Document
  • ASM Makes Comments to FDA on Classification of Rapid Influenza Direct Tests
  • ASM Makes a Statement on Dual Use Research of Concern and Biosafety
  • Minority Microbiology Mentor Newsletter

ASM NEWS, JOURNAL ARTICLES AND UPDATES

  • ASM General Meeting and ICAAC Co-locate to Boston in 2016
  • August Hot Topic
  • Photo Quizzes
  • ASM Conferences
  • ASM Journal Articles of Interest
  • ASM Press
  • Articles of Interest

 FEDERAL AGENCY UPDATES

  • CDC Updates Interim Guidance on Testing for Suspected Cases of Ebola Virus Disease
  • FDA Takes Steps to Help Ensure the Reliability of Laboratory Developed Tests
  • CDC Releases New Online Resource Highlighting Advanced Molecular Detection (AMD)
  • FDA Warns Consumers about Fraudulent Ebola Treatment Products
  • CDC Reports Progress on Laboratory Safety
  • Experimental Chikungunya Vaccine Induces Robust Antibody Response
  • CDC Provides Ebola Questions and Answers on Ebola
  • Recognizing National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM)
  • MMWR Articles of Interest

OTHER INFORMATION AND UPDATES

  • Critical and PoC Testing: Real World and Emerging Applications for Improved Clinical Outcomes
  • Fall ASCLS APHL Webinar Series
  • ASCP 2014 Annual Meeting
  • Articles of Interest

 

PSAB ACTIVITIES

ASM President Asks “What’s in Your Laboratory Freezer?”
ASM President Timothy Donahue sent a message to all members asking them to inventory their lab freezers. He encouraged “laboratory housekeeping” to review what microbes are in the lab, and to use appropriate methods to deposit in an approved collection or destroy any cultures that are no longer needed by the labs. To see the message, please go to http://www.asm.org/index.php/public-policy-2/99-policy/policy/93059-freezer-8-14.

Committee on Laboratory Practices Drafts Interim Ebola Guideline
The Laboratory Practice Committee of the ASM has drafted a document which includes enhanced precautions to assist laboratory personnel to follow those guidelines currently being recommended by the CDC. This document is presented as one possible approach to testing of patients with suspected Ebola hemorrhagic fever. To see the suggestions, please go to http://www.asm.org/images/PSAB/ASM-HFVEbolaLaboratoryInterimGuidance.pdf.

Committee on Laboratory Practices Prepares Listeria Guidance Document
In response to recent reports of Listeria monocytogenes contamination of peaches, plums, nectarines and other stone fruits, the Laboratory Practice Committee has commented on aspects of testing in suspected cases of listeriosis. To see their recommendations, please click http://www.asm.org/index.php/public-policy-2/100-policy/policy-programs/93029-listeria-guide.

ASM Makes Comments to FDA on Classification of Rapid Influenza Direct Tests
The Laboratory Practices Committee commented on the FDA’s “Reclassification of Influenza Virus Antigen Detection Test Systems Intended for Use Directly with Clinical Specimens” as published in the May 22 Federal Register, Docket Number FDA–2014–N–0440. Reliable Rapid Influenza Direct Tests (RIDTs) can have significant clinical impact on patient outcome and a financial impact on laboratory services. To see the comments, please click http://www.asm.org/index.php/publicpolicy-2/statements-testimony/137-policy/documents/statements-and-testimony/93035-fda-8-20.

ASM Makes a Statement on Dual Use Research of Concern and Biosafety
President Tim Donohue and PSAB Chair Ron Atlas sent the membership a statement clarifying ASM’s position on dual use research of concern (DURC), gain of function research, and laboratory biosafety. To read this statement, please go to http://www.asm.org/index.php/component/content/article/137-policy/documents/statements-and-testimony/93024-durc-7-31-14

Minority Microbiology Mentor Newsletter
The August issue of the Minority Microbiology Newsletter has been published by the Committee on Microbiological Issues Impacting Minorities (CMIIM). You can read the newsletter by going to this link:http://www.asm.org/index.php/public-policy-2/135-policy/documents/newsletters/minority-microbiology-mentor-newsletter/93032-mmm-8-14.

ASM NEWS, JOURNAL ARTICLES AND UPDATES

ASM General Meeting and ICAAC Co-locate to Boston in 2016
The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) announces that starting in 2016 the Society will co-locate its two major annual meetings, the General Meeting and the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC).   The first co-located General Meeting /ICAAC will be held June 2016 in Boston, MA. For details, see http://www.asm.org/index.php/asm-newsroom2/press-releases/92-news-room/press-releases/93034-asm-general-meeting-and-icaac-co-locate-to-boston-in-2016.

August Hot Topic
The Clinical Microbiology Portal August Hot Topic discussion is entitled “MERS in the United States” and was presented by Judith Lovchik, Ph.D., D(ABMM), Indiana State Department of Health. The discussion can be found by going to https://clinmicro.asm.org/index.php/portal/hot-topics/82-portal-resources/416-mers-in-the-united-states.

Photo Quizzes
To see this popular feature of The Journal of Clinical Microbiology on the Clinical Microbiology Portal and to test your knowledge, go to https://clinmicro.asm.org/index.php/bench-work-resources/guidelines/22-identifying-organisms/399-photo-quizzes.

ASM Conferences

5th ASM Conference on Beneficial Microbes
September 27-30, 2014
Washington, DC

5th ASM Conference on Cell-Cell Communication in Bacteria
October 18-21, 2014
San Antonio, TX

3rd ASM Conference on Viral Manipulation of Nuclear Processes
October 30 - November 2, 2014
Washington, DC

1st ASM Conference on Polymicrobial Infections
November 13 – 16, 2014
Washington, DC

For a complete list of upcoming ASM conferences, please see http://conferences.asm.org/

ASM Journal Articles of Interest

Origin and Evolution of European Community-Acquired Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus
Phylogenetic analyses strongly suggest that the European epidemic community acquired-MRSA is derived from a methicillin sensitive ancestor from sub-Saharan Africa. Moreover, research suggests that a single genetic event results in resistance to both methicillin and fusidic acid. To read the article in mBio®, click the following link http://mbio.asm.org/content/5/5/e01044-14.

Highly Drug Resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa Strains Isolated in Ohio
Carbapenem-resistance mediated by metallo-β-lactamases (MBLs) is uncommon in the USA, but s widespread globally. This particular MBL, verona integron-encoded metallo-β-lactamase (VIM), is responsible for inducing resistance to all fluoroquinolones, aminoglycosides and β-lactams. Read more at http://www.asm.org/index.php/journal-press-releases/93030-highly-drug-resistant-virulent-strain-of-pseudomonas-aeruginosa-arises-in-ohio.

ASM Press

Cases in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Fourth Edition
Authors: Peter Gilligan, Daniel Shapiro, and Melissa Miller
Paperback, 590 pages, four-color illustrations throughout, glossary, index
(9781555818685) for more information, please visit the e-store at:

http://www.asmscience.org/content/book/10.1128/9781555818678;jsessionid=4kuoq12jq1c7l.x-asm-books-live-01

Journal Articles

Deaths Attributable to Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae Infections
Authors evaluated the number of deaths attributable to carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae by using studies from around the world published before April 9, 2012. Attributable death was defined as the difference in deaths between patients with carbapenem-resistant infections and those with carbapenem-susceptible infections. Read the article at http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/20/7/12-1004_article.

Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacter cloacae Isolates Producing KPC-3, North Dakota
After reporting of CRE infections to the North Dakota Department of Health became mandatory in 2011, a total of 20 CRE cases were noted in 12 of 53 counties (2.9 cases/100,000 population). Most cases involved infection with Enterobacter cloacae and occurred in Cass County, where Fargo is located. The report describes an outbreak of clonal carbapenem-resistant E. cloacae in a health care system there. The report can be found at http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/20/9/14-0344_article.

FEDERAL AGENCY UPDATES

CDC Updates Interim Guidance on Testing for Suspected Cases of Ebola Virus Disease
On August 26, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provided updated guidance for laboratorians and other healthcare personnel handling specimens for Ebola testing. This guidance should be used to explain exactly the biosafety requirements for how to collect and perform routine testing of specimens to staff working in laboratory and healthcare settings. To read the updated guidance document, please go to http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/hcp/interim-guidance-specimen-collection-submission-patients-suspected-infection-ebola.html.

FDA Takes Steps to Help Ensure the Reliability of Laboratory Developed Tests
On July 31, consistent with the requirements of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act of 2012 (FDASIA), the Agency notified Congress of its intention to publish a proposed risk-based oversight framework for laboratory developed tests (LDTs), which are designed, manufactured and used within a single laboratory. They include tests that are used by health care professionals to guide medical treatment for their patients. FDA will accept comments on the proposed framework when it is released. To see more, go to http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm407321.htm.

CDC Releases New Online Resource Highlighting Advanced Molecular Detection (AMD)
CDC launched a new, interactive AMD web site featuring stories of AMD technology use in response to public health threats, highlighting CDC funded projects, and providing multimedia tools. To see the latest, click http://www.cdc.gov/amd/index.html.

FDA Warns Consumers about Fraudulent Ebola Treatment Products
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is advising consumers to be aware of products sold online claiming to prevent or treat the Ebola virus. Since the outbreak of the Ebola virus in West Africa, the FDA has seen and received consumer complaints about a variety of products claiming to either prevent the Ebola virus or treat the infection. There are currently no FDA-approved vaccines or drugs to prevent or treat Ebola. To read more, see http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm410086.htm.

CDC Reports Progress on Laboratory Safety
On August 15, CDC released a series of updates and actions taken showing its progress in laboratory safety. CDC reported on its response to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s (APHIS) Agricultural Select Agent Program’s (ASAP) summary of findings on the anthrax incident. CDC also reported findings of an internal CDC investigation on the H5N1 flu lab incident, and actions taken in response to findings of both the APHIS and CDC investigations into the H5N1 incident. To see these updates, click the following link http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2014/s0815-lab-safety.html.

Experimental Chikungunya Vaccine Induces Robust Antibody Response
An experimental vaccine to prevent the mosquito-borne viral illness chikungunya elicited neutralizing antibodies in all 25 adult volunteers who participated in a recent early-stage clinical trial conducted by researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAIDThe results are reported in the current issue of The Lancet. Read more at http://www.nih.gov/news/health/aug2014/niaid-14.htm.

CDC Provides Ebola Questions and Answers on Ebola
CDC has published a series of questions and answers on the 2014 Ebola outbreak, which has been the largest Ebola outbreak in history and the first time the disease has spread in West Africa. To share these with your colleagues, please go to http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola/outbreaks/guinea/qa.html.  

Recognizing National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM)
Each year in August, National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM) provides an opportunity to highlight the value of immunization across the lifespan. This year the National Public Health Information Coalition is coordinating NIAM activities. To see the materials you can disseminate, please go to http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/events/niam.html.

MMWR Articles of Interest

Hospitalizations for Respiratory Disease among Unaccompanied Children from Central America: June-July 2014
During October 2013 through June 2014, approximately 54,000 unaccompanied children, mostly from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, were identified attempting entry into the United States from Mexico, exceeding numbers reported in previous years. By July 6–19, 2014, CDC was informed of clusters of hospitalized children with respiratory disease indicating the total number of respiratory hospitalizations was 16 cases.

Pertussis in a School and Religious Community Averse to Health Care and Vaccinations
In vaccine-averse communities, controlling vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks is challenging, particularly when susceptible community members have prolonged contact in multiple settings. Local public health agencies need to identify and collaborate with institutions and health care resources to reduce morbidity from vaccine-preventable diseases in communities where a substantial number of persons do not have immunity. 

OTHER INFORMATION AND UPDATES

Critical and PoC Testing: Real World and Emerging Applications for Improved Clinical Outcomes
This 25th international symposium, to be held on September 17-20, 2014, examines advances in point-of-care testing and healthcare delivery trends that are changing the face of clinical diagnostics and the quality of patient care. This conference is sponsored by the American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) in cooperation with the Canadian Society of Clinical Chemistry (CSCC) and the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM), and the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (IFCC). To register, go to http://www.aacc.org/events/meetings/Pages/8719.aspx#.

Fall ASCLS APHL Webinar Series
The American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science (ASCLS) and the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL) have partnered to offer a series of webinars in September and October, 2014. To register, please go to http://www.ascls.org/index.php/professional-development/online-education/ascls-aphl-webinars.

ASCP 2014 Annual Meeting
The American Society of Clinical Pathology Annual Meeting will be held in Tampa, FL October 8-10, 2014. Discounted registration is now available by going to http://www.ascp.org/2014-Annual-Meeting/index.html.

Articles of Interest

W.H.O. Moves Team in Sierra Leone after a Medical Worker Contracts Ebola
New York Times
August 26, 2014
The World Health Organization (WHO) announced August 26 that it had removed its Ebola response teams from a region of Sierra Leone that has been hardest hit by the outbreak after a Senegalese epidemiologist there contracted the virus.

Our Microbiome May Be Looking Out for Itself
New York Times
August 14, 2014
In the journal Bioessays, a team of scientists has raised a creepy possibility. Perhaps our menagerie of germs is also influencing our behavior in order to advance its own evolutionary success giving us cravings for certain foods, for example. Maybe the microbiome is our puppet master.

A Polish to Fight Nail Fungus
Wall Street Journal
August 4, 2014
A special nail polish can help prevent toenail-fungus infection from recurring after it has been treated.

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