ESCMID weekly news 18.02.2020

18 February 2020: ESCMID Weekly News
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18 February 2020

Dear colleagues,

Please find below the latest edition of ESCMID Weekly News.

With kind regards,
ESCMID Executive Office.


ESCMID Excellence Awardee 2020: Prof. Herman Goossens

The ESCMID Award for Excellence in Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases is our most prestigious award. For 2020, the ESCMID Executive Committee selected Prof. Herman Goossens (University of Antwerp, Antwerpen, Belgium) as recipient of this prestigious award.  Prof. Herman Goossens is a full professor of Medical Microbiology at the University of Antwerp in Belgium since 1992, director of the laboratory of Clinical Microbiology at the University Hospital Antwerp since 1992 and director of Laboratory Medicine of the University Hospital Antwerp since 1997. His professional goal is to bridge the gap between basic and clinical research, with a major focus on antibiotic resistance, to enhance the standard of healthcare, public health and professional standards, for the good of the public in large.

Prof. Goossens’s current research is focused in five areas. First, the detection and genetic mechanisms involved in the emergence and evolution of antibiotic resistance and virulence in bacteria and its epidemiological and ecological bases and implications. Second, studying antimicrobial use in hospitals, the community and long-term care facilities, developing indicators of use and quality of prescribing, initially in Europe, later globally, focusing on Low and Middle Income Countries. Third, linking scientific and clinical research throughout Europe in lower respiratory tract infections, in primary health care and hospital medical practice. Fourth, better prepare Europe for emerging infectious diseases and pandemics. Fifth, building a network of more than 800 diagnostic labs in more than 40 countries in Europe to support clinical trials that investigate the utility of new antimicrobial strategies and diagnostics.

Prof. Goossens will receive his award at ECCMID 2020 in Paris during the Excellence Award session on Monday 20 April 2020. During the ceremony, he will give his recipient lecture entitled “Transcending European clinical research in infectious diseases through collaboration to break down traditional silos”.

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ESCMID Course Highlight: Translation of recent advances in diagnostic methods to CM and ID – Lund, Sweden

Don’t miss out on this great upcoming ESCMID Postgraduate Education Course in Lund, Sweden, from 28-29 May 2020. This course aims to update the audience concerning recent advances in diagnostic methods, give the audience a chance to see how these advancements are considered by the experts in the field, stimulate future collaborations between participants and to facilitate a visit to one of the biggest Scandinavian clinical microbiology laboratories.

Attendance grants are available, apply on the ESCMID courses website.

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Via EITaF: COVID-19 update

A new article by EITaF has outlined several key resources and happenings in the evolution of the novel Chinese Coronavirus, including:

World Health Organization names the new coronavirus disease: COVID-19
The CO stands for COrona, the VI for virus and the D for disease.

The VIRUS has been named SARS-CoV-2 by the international committee for taxonomy of viruses.

Find out more on the EITaF Outbreak News webpage. 

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ECCMID Attendance grants – Further enabling our colleagues

We are proud to announce that selection is currently underway for the new ECCMID Attendance grants – This entails all-inclusive grants to at least 15 authors of accepted abstracts from Low-Middle income countries (as defined by the World Bank). The grant will cover ECCMID 2020 registration, as well as travel and accommodation costs.

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CMI highlight: Multidrug-resistant Salmonella enterica serovar London carrying blaNDM-1 encoding plasmid from Singapore

Octavia et al. report a case at the National Public Health Laboratory in Singapore of a patient with infection by, Salmonella and Clostridium difficile. The C. difficile was treated with oral vancomycin with symptomatic recovery while no specific antimicrobial treatment was prescribed for the salmonellosis. The patient was discharged after five days and further characterisation was performed on the Salmonella isolate. On identification of resistance to meropenem and imipenem, additional susceptibility testing was performed for colistin, ceftazidime-avibactam, ceftolozane-tazobactam, aztreonam, and tigecycline. The Salmonella isolate was found to be multi-drug resistant (MDR).

Whole genome sequencing was done and suggests that the isolate is Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar London. Only 0.15% of Salmonella isolates received at the National Public Health Laboratory between 2011-2018 were S. London and none of them were MDR. A large completely closed blaNDM-1 bearing plasmid was obtained, and apart from blaNDM-1, the plasmid was found to contain multiple antibiotic resistance genes. The plasmid shared a 99% identity to a blaNDM-1-bearing plasmid from an E. coli strain and conjugation assays demonstrated that it was transmissible.

The authors conclude that, increasing accessibility of global travel and medical tourism is accompanied by the risk of importing multi-drug-resistant bacteria. Plasmid-mediated blaNDM-1 also carries risk of horizontal transmission to other bacterial species, and due to the nature of Salmonella spp., there is a significant potential for spread in both healthcare and wider community settings.

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The ESCMID Newsletter is issued on behalf of the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) by the ESCMID Executive Office. It contains announcements of ESCMID-related matters and other information of interest to professionals in the infection field.

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