Johannes Forster

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OBJECTIVES Rotavirus is the leading cause of acute gastroenteritis requiring hospitalization in young children. Data on the burden of rotavirus gastroenteritis are needed to guide recommendations for rotavirus vaccine use. This study was undertaken to estimate the burden of rotavirus gastroenteritis in European children <5 years of age. METHODS This(More)
Interleukin-4 (IL-4) plays a major role in immunoglobulin E (IgE) production. Its signal is conferred to effector cells through binding to the alpha chain of the IL-4 receptor (IL-4Ralpha). We present further evidence for polymorphisms in the IL-4Ralpha gene having an effect on IgE regulation. For two of four common polymorphisms, S503P and Q576R, we found(More)
The platelet-activating factor (PAF) represents a phospholipid with complex biological functions, including involvement in inflammatory processes. The degrading enzyme PAF acetylhydrolase (PAFAH) represents a candidate for asthma and other atopic diseases. Two loss-of-function mutations of PAFAH are associated with severe asthma in Japanese individuals. Our(More)
Data on the economic burden of lower respiratory tract infections (LRTI) in young children are lacking in Germany. The objective of the cost-of-illness study was to estimate the economic impact of community-acquired LRTI and nosocomial LRTI as well as of infections due to respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), parainfluenza viruses (PIV) and influenza viruses(More)
BACKGROUND Interleukin 8 (IL8) belongs to the family of chemokines. It mediates the activation and migration of neutrophils from peripheral blood into tissue and hereby plays a pivotal role in the initiation of inflammation. Thus it is important in inflammatory lung diseases like bronchial asthma or severe infections by Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).(More)
BACKGROUND The great impact of rotavirus disease on morbidity and medical health care costs in industrialized countries together with the withdrawal of the live oral rotavirus vaccine have made a reassessment of rotavirus gastroenteritis necessary. Such a reassessment should provide sufficient data for developing alternative disease prevention strategies(More)
BACKGROUND The clinical relevance of infections with the novel human coronavirus NL63 (HCoV-NL63) has not been investigated systematically. We therefore determined its association with disease in young children with lower respiratory tract infection (LRTI). METHODS AND FINDINGS Nine hundred forty-nine samples of nasopharyngeal secretions from children(More)
BACKGROUND It is unclear which exposures may cause or modify the adverse effect of rapid weight gain on fat mass development in term children whose birth weight is appropriate-for-gestational age (AGA). OBJECTIVE To determine which intrauterine or postnatal exposures increase the risk of or modify the effect of rapid weight gain on body fat percentage(More)
Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the major cause of lower respiratory tract infections in infants. Since epidemiological data from Germany are scarce, a large retrospective hospital based analysis was performed. In the first part of the study, laboratory records were checked for RSV positive specimens from January 1988 to December 1997. A total of 1664(More)
Surveillance systems for acute respiratory infections (ARI) in children currently are often limited in terms of the panel of pathogens and the age range investigated or are only syndromic and at times only active in the winter season. Within PID-ARI.net, a research network for ARI in children in Germany, an active, year-round surveillance system was formed(More)