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      Next-generation sequencing diagnostics of bacteremia in sepsis (Next GeneSiS-Trial) : Study protocol of a prospective, observational, noninterventional, multicenter, clinical trial

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          Sepsis remains a major challenge, even in modern intensive care medicine. The identification of the causative pathogen is crucial for an early optimization of the antimicrobial treatment regime. In this context, culture-based diagnostic procedures (e.g., blood cultures) represent the standard of care, although they are associated with relevant limitations. Accordingly, culture-independent molecular diagnostic procedures might be of help for the identification of the causative pathogen in infected patients. The concept of an unbiased sequence analysis of circulating cell-free DNA (cfDNA) from plasma samples of septic patients by next-generation sequencing (NGS) has recently been identified to be a promising diagnostic platform for critically ill patients suffering from bloodstream infections. Although this new approach might be more sensitive and specific than culture-based state-of-the-art technologies, additional clinical trials are needed to exactly define the performance as well as clinical value of a NGS-based approach.


          Next GeneSiS is a prospective, observational, noninterventional, multicenter study to assess the diagnostic performance of a NGS-based approach for the detection of relevant infecting organisms in patients with suspected or proven sepsis [according to recent sepsis definitions (sepsis-3)] by the use of the quantitative sepsis indicating quantifier (SIQ) score in comparison to standard (culture-based) microbiological diagnostics. The clinical value of this NGS-based approach will be estimated by a panel of independent clinical specialists, retrospectively identifying potential changes in patients’ management based on NGS results. Further subgroup analyses will focus on the clinical value especially for patients suffering from a failure of empiric treatment within the first 3 days after onset [as assessed by death of the patient or lack of improvement of the patient's clinical condition (in terms of an inadequate decrease of SOFA-score) or persistent high procalcitonin levels].


          This prospective, observational, noninterventional, multicenter study for the first time investigates the performance as well as the clinical value of a NGS-based approach for the detection of bacteremia in patients with sepsis and may therefore be a pivotal step toward the clinical use of NGS in this indication.

          Trial registration:

          DRKS-ID: DRKS00011911 (registered October 9, 2017); Identifier: NCT03356249 (registered November 29, 2017)

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          Most cited references 21

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          Epidemiology of severe sepsis

          Severe sepsis is a leading cause of death in the United States and the most common cause of death among critically ill patients in non-coronary intensive care units (ICU). Respiratory tract infections, particularly pneumonia, are the most common site of infection, and associated with the highest mortality. The type of organism causing severe sepsis is an important determinant of outcome, and gram-positive organisms as a cause of sepsis have increased in frequency over time and are now more common than gram-negative infections. Recent studies suggest that acute infections worsen pre-existing chronic diseases or result in new chronic diseases, leading to poor long-term outcomes in acute illness survivors. People of older age, male gender, black race, and preexisting chronic health conditions are particularly prone to develop severe sepsis; hence prevention strategies should be targeted at these vulnerable populations in future studies.
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            Epidemiology of sepsis in Germany: results from a national prospective multicenter study.

            To determine the prevalence and mortality of ICU patients with severe sepsis in Germany, with consideration of hospital size. Prospective, observational, cross-sectional 1-day point-prevalence study. 454 ICUs from a representative nationwide sample of 310 hospitals stratified by size. Data were collected via 1-day on-site audits by trained external study physicians. Visits were randomly distributed over 1 year (2003). Inflammatory response of all ICU patients was assessed using the ACCP/SCCM consensus conference criteria. Patients with severe sepsis were followed up after 3 months for hospital mortality and length of ICU stay. Main outcome measures were prevalence and mortality. A total of 3,877 patients were screened. Prevalence was 12.4% (95% CI, 10.9-13.8%) for sepsis and 11.0% (95% CI, 9.7-12.2%) for severe sepsis including septic shock. The ICU and hospital mortality of patients with severe sepsis was 48.4 and 55.2%, respectively, without significant differences between hospital size. Prevalence and mean length of ICU stay of patients with severe sepsis were significantly higher in larger hospitals and universities (
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              Endogenous non-retroviral RNA virus elements in mammalian genomes.

              Retroviruses are the only group of viruses known to have left a fossil record, in the form of endogenous proviruses, and approximately 8% of the human genome is made up of these elements. Although many other viruses, including non-retroviral RNA viruses, are known to generate DNA forms of their own genomes during replication, none has been found as DNA in the germline of animals. Bornaviruses, a genus of non-segmented, negative-sense RNA virus, are unique among RNA viruses in that they establish persistent infection in the cell nucleus. Here we show that elements homologous to the nucleoprotein (N) gene of bornavirus exist in the genomes of several mammalian species, including humans, non-human primates, rodents and elephants. These sequences have been designated endogenous Borna-like N (EBLN) elements. Some of the primate EBLNs contain an intact open reading frame (ORF) and are expressed as mRNA. Phylogenetic analyses showed that EBLNs seem to have been generated by different insertional events in each specific animal family. Furthermore, the EBLN of a ground squirrel was formed by a recent integration event, whereas those in primates must have been formed more than 40 million years ago. We also show that the N mRNA of a current mammalian bornavirus, Borna disease virus (BDV), can form EBLN-like elements in the genomes of persistently infected cultured cells. Our results provide the first evidence for endogenization of non-retroviral virus-derived elements in mammalian genomes and give novel insights not only into generation of endogenous elements, but also into a role of bornavirus as a source of genetic novelty in its host.

                Author and article information

                Medicine (Baltimore)
                Medicine (Baltimore)
                Wolters Kluwer Health
                February 2018
                09 February 2018
                : 97
                : 6
                [a ]Department of Anesthesiology, Heidelberg University Hospital, Heidelberg
                [b ]Fraunhofer IGB, Stuttgart
                [c ]Noscendo GmbH, Duisburg
                [d ]Institute of Medical Biometry and Informatics, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg
                [e ]Institute of Infectious Diseases and Infection Control, Jena University Hospital, Jena
                [f ]Department of Anaesthesiology, Division of Intensive Care, University Clinic Ulm, Ulm
                [g ]Department of Anesthesiology, Westpfalzklinikum, Kaiserslautern
                [h ]Department of Intensive Care and Intermediate Care, RWTH University Hospital Aachen, Aachen, Germany.
                Author notes
                []Correspondence: Thorsten Brenner, Department of Anesthesiology, Heidelberg University Hospital, Im Neuenheimer Feld 110, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany (e-mail: thorsten.brenner@ ).
                MD-D-18-00669 09868
                Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

                This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 (CCBY), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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