Benjamin John Cowling

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BACKGROUND Hand, foot, and mouth disease is a common childhood illness caused by enteroviruses. Increasingly, the disease has a substantial burden throughout east and southeast Asia. To better inform vaccine and other interventions, we characterised the epidemiology of hand, foot, and mouth disease in China on the basis of enhanced surveillance. METHODS(More)
BACKGROUND There are few data on the comparative epidemiology and virology of the pandemic 2009 influenza A (H1N1) virus and cocirculating seasonal influenza A viruses in community settings. METHODS We recruited 348 index patients with acute respiratory illness from 14 outpatient clinics in Hong Kong in July and August 2009. We then prospectively followed(More)
Joseph T. Wu, Edward S. K. Ma, Cheuk Kwong Lee, Daniel K. W. Chu, Po-Lai Ho, Angela L. Shen, Andrew Ho, Ivan F. N. Hung, Steven Riley, Lai Ming Ho, Che Kit Lin, Thomas Tsang, Su-Vui Lo, Yu-Lung Lau, Gabriel M. Leung, Benjamin J. Cowling, and J. S. Malik Peiris Departments of Community Medicine and School of Public Health, Microbiology, Medicine, and(More)
BACKGROUND Few data are available about the effectiveness of nonpharmaceutical interventions for preventing influenza virus transmission. OBJECTIVE To investigate whether hand hygiene and use of facemasks prevents household transmission of influenza. DESIGN Cluster randomized, controlled trial. Randomization was computer generated; allocation was(More)
BACKGROUND The novel influenza A H7N9 virus emerged recently in mainland China, whereas the influenza A H5N1 virus has infected people in China since 2003. Both infections are thought to be mainly zoonotic. We aimed to compare the epidemiological characteristics of the complete series of laboratory-confirmed cases of both viruses in mainland China so far.(More)
BACKGROUND Recent studies suggest that humans exhale fine particles during tidal breathing but little is known of their composition, particularly during infection. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS We conducted a study of influenza infected patients to characterize influenza virus and particle concentrations in their exhaled breath. Patients presenting with(More)
BACKGROUND Testosterone therapy is increasingly promoted. No randomized placebo-controlled trial has been implemented to assess the effect of testosterone therapy on cardiovascular events, although very high levels of androgens are thought to promote cardiovascular disease. METHODS A systematic review and meta-analysis was conducted of placebo-controlled(More)
South Korea is experiencing the largest outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infections outside the Arabian Peninsula, with 166 laboratory-confirmed cases, including 24 deaths up to 19 June 2015. We estimated that the mean incubation period was 6.7 days and the mean serial interval 12.6 days. We found it unlikely that infectiousness(More)
BACKGROUND Volunteer challenge studies have provided detailed data on viral shedding from the respiratory tract before and through the course of experimental influenza virus infection. There are no comparable quantitative data to our knowledge on naturally acquired infections. METHODS In a community-based study in Hong Kong in 2008, we followed up(More)
In Hong Kong, kindergartens and primary schools were closed when local transmission of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 was identified. Secondary schools closed for summer vacation shortly afterwards. By fitting a model of reporting and transmission to case data, we estimated that transmission was reduced approximately 25% when secondary schools closed.