Author Archives: PLoS Medicine

Validity of a minimally invasive autopsy for cause of death determination in stillborn babies…

by Clara Menendez, Paola Castillo, Miguel J. Martínez, Dercio Jordao, Lucilia Lovane, Mamudo R. Ismail, Carla Carrilho, Cesaltina Lorenzoni, Fabiola Fernandes, Tacilta Nhampossa, Juan Carlos Hurtado, Mireia Navarro, Isaac Casas, Paula Santos Ritchie, Sonia Bandeira, Sibone Mocumbi, Zara Jaze, Flora Mabota, Khátia Munguambe, Maria Maixenchs, Ariadna Sanz, Inacio Mandomando, Alfons Nadal, Anna Goncé, Carmen Muñoz-Almagro, Llorenç Quintó, Jordi Vila, Eusebio Macete, Pedro Alonso, Jaume Ordi, Quique Bassat Background Over 5 million stillbirths and neonatal deaths occur annually. Limited and imprecise information on the cause of these deaths hampers progress in achieving global health targets.

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Validity of a minimally invasive autopsy tool for cause of death determination in pediatric…

by Quique Bassat, Paola Castillo, Miguel J. Martínez, Dercio Jordao, Lucilia Lovane, Juan Carlos Hurtado, Tacilta Nhampossa, Paula Santos Ritchie, Sónia Bandeira, Calvino Sambo, Valeria Chicamba, Mamudo R. Ismail, Carla Carrilho, Cesaltina Lorenzoni, Fabiola Fernandes, Pau Cisteró, Alfredo Mayor, Anelsio Cossa, Inacio Mandomando, Mireia Navarro, Isaac Casas, Jordi Vila, Khátia Munguambe, Maria Maixenchs, Ariadna Sanz, Llorenç Quintó, Eusebio Macete, Pedro Alonso, Clara Menéndez, Jaume Ordi Background In recent decades, the world has witnessed unprecedented progress in child survival. However, our knowledge of what is killing nearly 6 million children annually in low- and middle-income countries remains poor, partly because of the inadequacy and reduced precision of the methods currently utilized in these settings to investigate causes of death (CoDs). The study objective was to validate the use of a minimally invasive autopsy (MIA) approach as an adequate and more acceptable substitute for the complete diagnostic autopsy (CDA) for pediatric CoD investigation in a poor setting.

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Population-level impact of an accelerated HIV response plan to reach the UNAIDS 90-90-90 target…

by Mathieu Maheu-Giroux, Juan F. Vesga, Souleymane Diabaté, Michel Alary, Stefan Baral, Daouda Diouf, Kouamé Abo, Marie-Claude Boily Background National responses will need to be markedly accelerated to achieve the ambitious target of the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). This target aims for 90% of HIV-positive individuals to be aware of their status, for 90% of those aware to receive antiretroviral therapy (ART), and for 90% of those on treatment to have a suppressed viral load by 2020, with each individual target reaching 95% by 2030. We aimed to estimate the impact of various treatment-as-prevention scenarios in Côte d’Ivoire, one of the countries with the highest HIV incidence in West Africa, with unmet HIV prevention and treatment needs, and where key populations are important to the broader HIV epidemic. Methods and findings An age-stratified dynamic model was developed and calibrated to epidemiological and programmatic data using a Bayesian framework

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The US President’s Malaria Initiative and under-5 child mortality in sub-Saharan Africa: A…

by Aleksandra Jakubowski, Sally C. Stearns, Margaret E. Kruk, Gustavo Angeles, Harsha Thirumurthy Background Despite substantial financial contributions by the United States President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) since 2006, no studies have carefully assessed how this program may have affected important population-level health outcomes. We utilized multiple publicly available data sources to evaluate the association between introduction of PMI and child mortality rates in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).

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Malaria control adds to the evidence for health aid effectiveness

by Eran Bendavid In this Perspective, Eran Bendavid discusses the broader political and health consequences of US foreign aid in light of the study by Aleksandra Jakubowski and colleagues of the President’s Malaria Initiative in sub-Saharan Africa.

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Estimating the causal influence of body mass index on risk of Parkinson disease: A Mendelian…

See original article: Estimating the causal influence of body mass index on risk of Parkinson disease: A Mendelian…

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Risk factors and short-term projections for serotype-1 poliomyelitis incidence in Pakistan: A…

by Natalie A. Molodecky, Isobel M. Blake, Kathleen M. O’Reilly, Mufti Zubair Wadood, Rana M.

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Reducing US cardiovascular disease burden and disparities through national and targeted dietary…

by Jonathan Pearson-Stuttard, Piotr Bandosz, Colin D. Rehm, Jose Penalvo, Laurie Whitsel, Tom Gaziano, Zach Conrad, Parke Wilde, Renata Micha, Ffion Lloyd-Williams, Simon Capewell, Dariush Mozaffarian, Martin O’Flaherty Background Large socio-economic disparities exist in US dietary habits and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality. While economic incentives have demonstrated success in improving dietary choices, the quantitative impact of different dietary policies on CVD disparities is not well established. We aimed to quantify and compare the potential effects on total CVD mortality and disparities of specific dietary policies to increase fruit and vegetable (F&V) consumption and reduce sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) consumption in the US. Methods and findings Using the US IMPACT Food Policy Model and probabilistic sensitivity analyses, we estimated and compared the reductions in CVD mortality and socio-economic disparities in the US population potentially achievable from 2015 to 2030 with specific dietary policy scenarios: (a) a national mass media campaign (MMC) aimed to increase consumption of F&Vs and reduce consumption of SSBs, (b) a national fiscal policy to tax SSBs to increase prices by 10%, (c) a national fiscal policy to subsidise F&Vs to reduce prices by 10%, and (d) a targeted policy to subsidise F&Vs to reduce prices by 30% among Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants only.

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Data Sharing Statements for Clinical Trials: A Requirement of the International Committee of…

by Darren B. Taichman, Peush Sahni, Anja Pinborg, Larry Peiperl, Christine Laine, Astrid James, Sung-Tae Hong, Abraham Haileamlak, Laragh Gollogly, Fiona Godlee, Frank A. Frizelle, Fernando Florenzano, Jeffrey M. Drazen, Howard Bauchner, Christopher Baethge, Joyce Backus The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors announces requirements that a data sharing plan be prospectively registered, and a data sharing statement be included in submitted manuscripts, for clinical trials to be published in ICMJE journals.

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Maternal age and severe maternal morbidity: A population-based retrospective cohort study

by Sarka Lisonkova, Jayson Potts, Giulia M. Muraca, Neda Razaz, Yasser Sabr, Wee-Shian Chan, Michael S. Kramer Background One of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals of 2000 was to reduce maternal mortality by 75% in 15 y; however, this challenge was not met by many industrialized countries. As average maternal age continues to rise in these countries, associated potentially life-threatening severe maternal morbidity has been understudied. Our primary objective was to examine the associations between maternal age and severe maternal morbidities.

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Tobacco control: Developing an innovative and effective global strategy

by The PLOS Medicine Editors In this month’s editorial, the PLOS Medicine Editors discuss the campaign for World No Tobacco Day 2017.

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Association between expansion of primary healthcare and racial inequalities in mortality…

by Thomas Hone, Davide Rasella, Mauricio L. Barreto, Azeem Majeed, Christopher Millett Background Universal health coverage (UHC) can play an important role in achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 10, which addresses reducing inequalities, but little supporting evidence is available from low- and middle-income countries. Brazil’s Estratégia de Saúde da Família (ESF) (family health strategy) is a community-based primary healthcare (PHC) programme that has been expanding since the 1990s and is the main platform for delivering UHC in the country. We evaluated whether expansion of the ESF was associated with differential reductions in mortality amenable to PHC between racial groups. Methods and findings Municipality-level longitudinal fixed-effects panel regressions were used to examine associations between ESF coverage and mortality from ambulatory-care-sensitive conditions (ACSCs) in black/pardo (mixed race) and white individuals over the period 2000–2013.

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Contribution of systemic and somatic factors to clinical response and resistance to PD-L1…

by Alexandra Snyder, Tavi Nathanson, Samuel A. Funt, Arun Ahuja, Jacqueline Buros Novik, Matthew D. Hellmann, Eliza Chang, Bulent Arman Aksoy, Hikmat Al-Ahmadie, Erik Yusko, Marissa Vignali, Sharon Benzeno, Mariel Boyd, Meredith Moran, Gopa Iyer, Harlan S. Robins, Elaine R.

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Estimation of the cost-effectiveness of HIV prevention portfolios for people who inject drugs…

by Cora L. Bernard, Douglas K. Owens, Jeremy D. Goldhaber-Fiebert, Margaret L. Brandeau Background The risks of HIV transmission associated with the opioid epidemic make cost-effective programs for people who inject drugs (PWID) a public health priority

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