To investigate maternal immunoglobulins’ (IgM, IgG) response to SARS-CoV-2 infection during pregnancy and IgG transplacental transfer, to characterise neonatal antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, and to longitudinally follow actively and passively acquired antibodies in infants.
A prospective observational study.
Public healthcare system in Santa Clara County (California, USA).
Women with symptomatic or asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection during pregnancy and their infants were enrolled between 15 April 2020 and 31 March 2021.
SARS-CoV-2 serology analyses in the cord and maternal blood at delivery and longitudinally in infant blood between birth and 28 weeks of life.
Of 145 mothers who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 during pregnancy, 86 had symptomatic infections: 78 with mild-moderate symptoms, and 8 with severe-critical symptoms. The seropositivity rates of the mothers at delivery was 65% (95% CI 0.56% to 0.73%) and the cord blood was 58% (95% CI 0.49% to 0.66%). IgG levels significantly correlated between the maternal and cord blood (Rs=0.93, p
Maternal SARS-CoV-2 IgG is efficiently transferred across the placenta when infections occur more than 2 months before delivery. Maternally derived passive immunity may persist in infants up to 6 months of life. Neonates are capable of mounting a strong antibody response to perinatal SARS-CoV-2 infection.
Preserving residual kidney function (RKF) may be beneficial to patients on haemodialysis (HD) and it has been proposed that commencing dialysis incrementally rather than three times a week may preserve RKF. In Incremental HD, target dose includes a contribution from RKF, which is added to HD dose, allowing individualisation of the HD prescription. We will conduct a feasibility randomised controlled trial (RCT) comparing incremental HD and conventional three times weekly treatments in incident HD patients. The study is designed also to provide pilot data to allow determination of effect size to power a definitive study.
After screening to ensure native renal urea clearance >3 mL/min/1.73 m2, the study will randomise 54 patients within 3 months of HD initiation to conventional in-centre thrice weekly dialysis or incremental in-centre HD commencing 2 days a week. Subjects will be followed up for 12 months. The study will be carried out across four UK renal centres.
The primary outcome is to evaluate the feasibility of conducting a definitive RCT and to estimate the difference in rate of decline of RKF between the two groups at 6 and 12 months time points. Secondary outcomes will include the impact of dialysis intensity on vascular access events, major adverse cardiac events and survival. Impact of dialysis intensity on patient-reported outcomes measures, cognition and frailty will be assessed using EQ-5D-5L, PHQ-9, Illness Intrusiveness Rating Score, Montreal Cognitive assessment and Clinical Frailty Score. Safety outcomes include hospitalisation, fluid overload episodes, hyperkalaemia events and vascular access events.
This study will inform the design of a definitive study, adequately powered to determine whether RKF is better preserved after incremental HD initiation compared with conventional initiation.
Ethics approval has been granted by Cambridge South Research Ethics Committee, United Kingdom(REC17/EE/0311). Results will be disseminated via peer-reviewed publication.
End-stage kidney disease disproportionately affects people of South Asian origin. This study aimed to uncover the lived experiences of this group of patients on centre-based haemodialysis (HD), the most prevalent dialysis modality.
The study utilised a qualitative focus group methodology. Seven focus groups were conducted across four NHS Trusts in the UK including three in Gujarati and two each in Punjabi and Urdu. This provided an inclusive opportunity for South Asian patients to contribute in their language of origin. A total of 24 patients participated. Focus groups were facilitated by bilingual project workers and data were forward translated and analysed using thematic analysis.
Four themes were identified. This included (1) ‘treatment imposition’, which comprised of the restrictive nature of HD, the effects of treatment and the feeling of being trapped in an endless process. (2) The ‘patient–clinician relationship’ centred around the impact of a perceived lack of staff time, and inadequacies in the quality of interactions. (3) ‘Coping strategies’ highlighted the role of cognitive reappraisal, living in the moment and family support networks in facilitating adjustment. (4) ‘Pursuit of transplantation’ included equating this form of treatment with restoring normality, alongside cultural factors limiting hopefulness for receiving an organ.
In general, the experiences of South Asian patients receiving HD were not unique to this ethnic group. We did find distinct issues in relation to interactions with healthcare professionals, views on access to transplantation and the importance of family support networks. The study provides useful insights which may help enhance culturally tailored renal care.
There is a mismatch between research questions considered important by patients, carers and healthcare professionals and the research performed in many fields of medicine. The non-alcohol-related liver and gallbladder disorders priority setting partnership was established to identify the top research priorities in the prevention, diagnostic and treatment of gallbladder disorders and liver disorders not covered by the James-Lind Alliance (JLA) alcohol-related liver disease priority setting partnership.
The methods broadly followed the principles of the JLA guidebook. The one major deviation from the JLA methodology was the final step of identifying priorities: instead of prioritisation by group discussions at a consensus workshop involving stakeholders, the prioritisation was achieved by a modified Delphi consensus process.
A total of 428 unique valid diagnostic or treatment research questions were identified. A literature review established that none of these questions were considered ‘answered’ that is, high-quality systematic reviews suggest that further research is not required on the topic. The Delphi panel achieved consensus (at least 80% Delphi panel members agreed) that a research question was a top research priority for six questions. Four additional research questions with highest proportion of Delphi panel members ranking the question as highly important were added to constitute the top 10 research priorities.
A priority setting process involving patients, carers and healthcare professionals has been used to identify the top 10priority areas for research related to liver and gallbladder disorders. Basic, translational, clinical and public health research are required to address these uncertainties.