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BACKGROUND Mathematical modelling of infectious diseases transmitted by the respiratory or close-contact route (e.g., pandemic influenza) is increasingly being used to determine the impact of possible interventions. Although mixing patterns are known to be crucial determinants for model outcome, researchers often rely on a priori contact assumptions with(More)
The force of infection, describing the rate at which a susceptible person acquires an infection, is a key parameter in models estimating the infectious disease burden, and the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of infectious disease prevention. Since Muench formulated the first catalytic model to estimate the force of infection from current status data in(More)
Following the emergence of a novel strain of influenza A(H1N1) in Mexico and the United States in April 2009, its epidemiology in Europe during the summer was limited to sporadic and localised outbreaks. Only the United Kingdom experienced widespread transmission declining with school holidays in late July. Using statistical modelling where applicable we(More)
Diseases of humans and wildlife are typically tracked and studied through incidence, the number of new infections per time unit. Estimating incidence is not without difficulties, as asymptomatic infections, low sampling intervals and low sample sizes can introduce large estimation errors. After infection, biomarkers such as antibodies or pathogens often(More)
Maternal antibodies against cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection offer, to some extent, protection against congenital CMV infection. This study describes the seroprevalence of CMV-specific IgG in 220 parturient women during pregnancy, at delivery, at 3 months after delivery and in their cord blood (Flanders, Belgium, 2006-2008). ELISA was used to measure IgG. Of(More)
BACKGROUND The spread of infectious diseases from person to person is determined by the frequency and nature of contacts between infected and susceptible members of the population. Although there is a long history of using mathematical models to understand these transmission dynamics, there are still remarkably little empirical data on contact behaviors(More)
BACKGROUND An altered gut microbiota composition has recently been linked to obesity. The principal aim of this study is to investigate and compare the gut microbiota composition in obese and lean children. Secondly, associations between analysed gut bacterial species, dietary compounds, energy intake and biochemical blood parameters are evaluated. (More)
We conducted a seroprevalence survey in Belgium, Finland, England & Wales, Italy and Poland on 13 449 serum samples broadly representative in terms of geography and age. Samples were tested for the presence of immunoglobulin G antibody using an enzyme immunoassay. The age-specific risk of infection was estimated using parametric and non-parametric(More)
BACKGROUND Data on more than a decade of outpatient use of tetracyclines, sulphonamides and trimethoprim, and other antibacterials in Europe were collected from 33 countries as part of the European Surveillance of Antimicrobial Consumption (ESAC) project, funded by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). METHODS For the period(More)