Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Burden and aetiology of diarrhoeal disease (GEMS)

Main findings from GEMS (the Global Enteric Multicenter Study) have just been published in the Lancet, along with a commentary. The GEMS study enrolled thousands of children with and without diarrhea from Kenya, Mali, Mozambique, The Gambia, Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan. The researchers found that most cases of moderate/severe diarrhea can be attributed to four pathogens: rotavirus, Shigella, cryptosporidium, and enterotoxigenic E. coli (ST-ETEC). Notably, at least one enteric pathogen was identified in the stool of 72% of control children (compared to 83% of cases), suggesting high prevalence of asymptomatic infections. Co-infection was also common, with two or more pathogens detected in 45% of cases and 31% of control children.  

The release is also covered in The New York Times:

GLOBAL HEALTH: 4 Germs Cause Most of Infants’ Severe Diarrhea

A study pinpoints just four microbes as the most common causes of
severe and fatal diarrhea among the world’s infants.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Sanitation in the Literature - May 20

Your semi-erratic-but-maybe-weekly-someday literature round-up on Sanitation, Courtesy of PipesAndPotties.

Any all comments are appreciated!

Factors associated with breastfeeding in two municipalities with low human development index in Northeast Brazil.
Mothers with better socioeconomic conditions, as represented by education, sanitation, and possession of consumer goods, had a higher median duration of exclusive/ predominant breastfeeding in both towns.

Determinants of reduced child stunting in Cambodia: analysis of pooled data from three Demographic and Health Surveys.
The reduction in stunting prevalence during the past decade was attributable to improvements in household wealth, sanitation, parental education, birth spacing and maternal tobacco use. The prevalence of stunting would have been further reduced by scaling up the coverage of improved sanitation facilities, extending birth intervals, and eradicating maternal tobacco use.

Are constructed treatment wetlands sustainable sanitation solutions?
Constructed treatment wetlands meet the basic criteria of sustainable sanitation systems by preventing diseases, protecting the environment, and being an affordable, acceptable, and simple technology. Additionally, constructed treatment wetlands produce treated wastewater of high quality, which is fostering reuse, which in turn makes them applicable in resources-oriented sanitation systems. The paper discusses the features that make constructed treatment wetlands a suitable solution in sustainable resources-oriented sanitation systems, the importance of system thinking for sustainability, as well as key factors for sustainable implementation of constructed wetland systems.

Faecal sludge management with the larvae of the black soldier fly (Hermetia illucens) - From a hygiene aspect.
 For example, grown larvae of the black soldier fly, Hermetia illucens L. (Diptera: Stratiomyidae), make an excellent protein source in animal feed, while the feeding activity of the larvae substantially reduces the dry mass of the treated material. This study examined the effect of black soldier fly larvae on the concentration of pathogenic microorganisms in human faeces and found a 6 log10 reduction in Salmonella spp. in human faeces in eight days, compared with a <2 log10 reduction in the control.

Land application of manure and Class B biosolids: an occupational and public quantitative microbial risk assessment.
Comparison of risks by pathogen group confirmed greater bacterial risks from manure, whereas viral risks were exclusive to biosolids. A direct comparison of the two residual types showed that biosolids use had greater risk because of the high infectivity of viruses, whereas the presence of environmentally recalcitrant pathogens such as and maintained manure risk. Direct comparisons of shared pathogens resulted in greater manure risks. Overall, it appears that in the short term, risks were high for both types of residuals, but given treatment, attenuation, and dilution, risks can be reduced to near-insignificant levels.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Sanitation in the Literature - May 6 through May 13

The following research articles from the previous week caught my attention.  Weigh in if you have any thoughts on any of them, or saw something this past week I missed.

Assessment of village water and sanitation committee in a district of Tamil Nadu, India.
"A descriptive study was conducted among 75 members of five Village Water and Sanitation Committees (VWSCs) and 15 local residents in Tamil Nadu, India to assess committee's formation and decision making process.... Although, all of them were aware about presence of guidelines, none of them knew its contents. About 20% opined that meetings were not being conducted regularly. All members said that they had problems in attending meeting regularly, take decisions if at least 10 (67%) members are present and fund was not adequate for 1 year period. One-third of local residents did not know the committee formation process and none of them aware about guidelines."

Food safety knowledge and practices of abattoir and butchery shops and the microbial profile of meat in Mekelle City, Ethiopia.
"15.4% of the abattoir workers had no health certificate and there was no hot water, sterilizer and cooling facility in the abattoir. 11.3% of the butchers didn't use protective clothes. There was a food safety knowledge gap within the abattoir and butcher shop workers. The mean values of bacterial load of abattoir meat, butcher shops and street meat sale was found to be 1.1×10(5), 5.6×10(5) and 4.3×10(6) cfu/g, respectively. The major bacterial pathogens isolated were Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus cereus."

Cooking fuel choices and garbage burning practices as determinants of birth weight: a cross-sectional study in Accra, Ghana.
"Maternal use of charcoal as a cooking fuel during pregnancy and burning of garbage at home are strong determinants of average fetal growth and risk of LBW. Efforts to reduce maternal exposures to IAP are thus important to improve birth outcomes."

School toilets: facilitating hand hygiene? A review of primary school hygiene facilities in a developed country.
"Nineteen schools (28%) followed the New Zealand Ministry of Education Code of Practice for toilet and bathroom facilities in schools, by providing warm water, liquid soap at every basin and functioning hand drying facilities. A further 25 schools (37%) would have met the standards except they provided only cold water (21 schools) or the cloth roller towels were unusable (4 schools). The other 24 schools' toilet facilities were deficient in some way, including one with no soap and six that provided no drying facilities. School socioeconomic position and toilet facility quality were not related."