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Original Article
Increased viral load in patients infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 Omicron variant in the Republic of Korea
Jeong-Min Kim, Dongju Kim, Nam-Joo Lee, Sang Hee Woo, Jaehee Lee, Hyeokjin Lee, Ae Kyung Park, Jeong-Ah Kim, Chae Young Lee, Il-Hwan Kim, Cheon Kwon Yoo, Eun-Jin Kim
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2023;14(4):272-278.   Published online July 27, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2023.0024
  • 1,045 View
  • 105 Download
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been declared a global pandemic owing to the rapid spread of the causative agent, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. Its Delta and Omicron variants are more transmissible and pathogenic than other variants. Some debates have emerged on the mechanism of variants of concern. In the COVID-19 wave that began in December 2021, the Omicron variant, first reported in South Africa, became identifiable in most cases globally. The aim of this study was to provide data to inform effective responses to the transmission of the Omicron variant.
Methods
The Delta variant and the spike protein D614G mutant were compared with the Omicron variant. Viral loads from 5 days after symptom onset were compared using epidemiological data collected at the time of diagnosis.
Results
The Omicron variant exhibited a higher viral load than other variants, resulting in greater transmissibility within 5 days of symptom onset.
Conclusion
Future research should focus on vaccine efficacy against the Omicron variant and compare trends in disease severity associated with its high viral load.
Brief Report
The effectiveness of Paxlovid treatment in long-term care facilities in South Korea during the outbreak of the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2
Hanul Park, Young Joon Park, Hye Young Lee, Mi Yu, Yeong-Jun Song, Sang Eun Lee, Ji-Joo Lee, Eun-Sol Lee, Yeonjung Kim
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(6):443-447.   Published online December 23, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0262
  • 2,804 View
  • 209 Download
  • 5 Web of Science
  • 8 Crossref
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
On November 5, 2021, Pfizer Inc. announced Paxlovid (nirmatrelvir +ritonavir) asa treatment method that could reduce the risk of hospitalization or death for patients withconfirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).Methods: From February 6, 2022 to April 2, 2022, the incidence of COVID-19 and the effectsof treatment with Paxlovid were analyzed in 2,241 patients and workers at 5 long-term carefacilities during the outbreak of the Omicron variant of severe acute respiratory syndromecoronavirus 2 in South Korea.Results: The rate of severe illness or death in the group given Paxlovid was 51% lower thanthat of the non-Paxlovid group (adjusted risk ratio [aRR], 0.49; 95% confidence interval [CI],0.24−0.98). Compared to unvaccinated patients, patients who had completed 3 doses of thevaccine had a 71% reduced rate of severe illness or death (aRR, 0.29; 95% CI, 0.13−0.64) and a65% reduced death rate (aRR, 0.35; 95% CI, 0.15−0.79).Conclusion: Patients given Paxlovid showed a lower rate of severe illness or death and alower fatality rate than those who did not receive Paxlovid. Patients who received 3 dosesof the vaccine had a lower rate of severe illness or death and a lower fatality rate than theunvaccinated group.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Efficacy and safety of antiviral treatments for symptomatic COVID-19 outpatients: Systematic review and network meta-analysis
    Meital Zur, Thalia Peselev, Stav Yanko, Victoria Rotshild, Ilan Matok
    Antiviral Research.2024; 221: 105768.     CrossRef
  • Clinical Effectiveness of Ritonavir-Boosted Nirmatrelvir—A Literature Review
    Sydney Paltra, Tim O. F. Conrad
    Advances in Respiratory Medicine.2024; 92(1): 66.     CrossRef
  • COVID‐19 infection in patients with haematological malignancies: A single‐centre survey in the latest Omicron wave in China
    Xiaolu Zhu, Qian Jiang, Jin Lu, Yuqian Sun, Xiaosu Zhao, Shenmiao Yang, Feifei Tang, Wenjing Yu, Ting Zhao, Xiaohong Liu, Jinsong Jia, Wenbing Duan, Lijuan Hu, Jing Wang, Yang Liu, Nan Peng, Xuelin Dou, Rui Ma, Qiang Fu, Huifang Wang, Kaiyan Liu, Xiaojun
    British Journal of Haematology.2023; 202(1): 31.     CrossRef
  • The association mental health of adolescents with economic impact during the COVID-19 pandemic: a 2020 Korean nationally representative survey
    Hanul Park, Kang-Sook Lee
    BMC Public Health.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Efficacy and safety of paxlovid (nirmatrelvir/ritonavir) in the treatment of COVID‐19: An updated meta‐analysis and trial sequential analysis
    Haokun Tian, Changsen Yang, Tiangang Song, Kechen Zhou, Lequan Wen, Ye Tian, Lirui Tang, Weikai Xu, Xinyuan Zhang
    Reviews in Medical Virology.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Real-World Effectiveness of Nirmatrelvir-Ritonavir and Its Acceptability in High-Risk COVID-19 Patients
    Min-Kyung Kim, Kyung-Shin Lee, Sin Young Ham, Youn Young Choi, Eunyoung Lee, Seungjae Lee, Bora Lee, Jaehyun Jeon, BumSik Chin, Yeonjae Kim, Gayeon Kim, Hee-Chang Jang, Jae-Phil Choi, Sang-Won Park
    Journal of Korean Medical Science.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
  • Effectiveness of Molnupiravir Treatment in Patients with COVID-19 in Korea: A Propensity Score Matched Study
    Hye Rim Park, Min-Gyu Yoo, Jong Mu Kim, Soon Jong Bae, Hyungmin Lee, Jungyeon Kim
    Infection & Chemotherapy.2023; 55(4): 490.     CrossRef
  • Nirmatrelvir combined with ritonavir for preventing and treating COVID-19
    Stefanie Reis, Maria-Inti Metzendorf, Rebecca Kuehn, Maria Popp, Ildiko Gagyor, Peter Kranke, Patrick Meybohm, Nicole Skoetz, Stephanie Weibel
    Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef
Original Articles
mRNA vaccine effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.2 (Delta) and B.1.1.529 (Omicron) variant transmission from home care cases to household contacts in South Korea
Hanul Park, Young Joon Park, Sang Eun Lee, Min Jei Lee, Hyungtae Ahn
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(6):435-442.   Published online November 28, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0243
  • 4,461 View
  • 170 Download
  • 1 Web of Science
  • 1 Crossref
Graphical AbstractGraphical Abstract AbstractAbstract PDF
Objectives
Household contacts of confirmed cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) areexposed to a high risk of viral transmission, and secondary incidence is an important indicatorof community transmission. This study analyzed the secondary attack rate and mRNA vaccineeffectiveness against transmission (VET) for index cases (patients treated at home) confirmedto be infected with the Delta and Omicron variants.Methods: The subjects of the study were 4,450 index cases and 10,382 household contacts.Logistic regression analysis was performed to compare the secondary attack rate byvaccination status, and adjusted relative risk and 95% confidence intervals were identified.Results: The secondary attack rate of the Delta variant was 27.3%, while the secondary attackrate of the Omicron variant was 29.8%. For the Delta variant, groups with less than 90 daysand more than 90 days after 2 doses of mRNA vaccination both showed a VET of 37%. For theOmicron variant, a 64% VET was found among those with less than 90 days after 2 doses ofmRNA vaccination.Conclusion: This study provides useful data on the secondary attack rate and VET of mRNAvaccines for household contacts of COVID-19 cases in South Korea.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Household secondary attack rates and risk factors during periods of SARS-CoV-2 Delta and Omicron variant predominance in the Republic of Korea
    Jin Lee, Mijeong Ko, Seontae Kim, Dosang Lim, Gemma Park, Sang-Eun Lee
    Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives.2023; 14(4): 263.     CrossRef
Investigation of SARS-CoV-2 lineages and mutations circulating in a university-affiliated hospital in South Korea analyzed using Oxford Nanopore MinION sequencing
Hyaekang Kim, Sung Hee Chung, Hyun Soo Kim, Han-Sung Kim, Wonkeun Song, Ki Ho Hong, Jae-Seok Kim
Osong Public Health Res Perspect. 2022;13(5):360-369.   Published online October 11, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.24171/j.phrp.2022.0183
  • 2,795 View
  • 72 Download
  • 1 Web of Science
  • 1 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDFSupplementary Material
Objectives
Despite the introduction of vaccines, treatments, and massive diagnostic testing, the evolution of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has continued to overcome barriers that had slowed its previous spread. As the virus evolves towards increasing fitness, it is critical to continue monitoring the occurrence of new mutations that could evade human efforts to control them. Methods: We performed whole-genome sequencing using Oxford Nanopore MinION sequencing on 58 SARS-CoV-2 isolates collected during the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic at a tertiary hospital in South Korea and tracked the emergence of mutations responsible for massive spikes in South Korea. Results: The differences among lineages were more pronounced in the spike gene, especially in the receptor-binding domain (RBD), than in other genes. Those RBD mutations could compromise neutralization by antibodies elicited by vaccination or previous infections. We also reported multiple incidences of Omicron variants carrying mutations that could impair the diagnostic sensitivity of reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction-based testing. Conclusion: These results provide an understanding of the temporal changes of variants and mutations that have been circulating in South Korea and their potential impacts on antigenicity, therapeutics, and diagnostic escape of the virus. We also showed that the utilization of the nanopore sequencing platform and the ARTIC workf low can provide convenient and accurate SARS-CoV-2 genomic surveillance even at a single hospital.

Citations

Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Molecular epidemiology of SARS‐CoV‐2 in Mongolia, first experience with nanopore sequencing in lower‐ and middle‐income countries setting
    Munkhtuya Erendereg, Suvd Tumurbaatar, Otgonjargal Byambaa, Gerelmaa Enebish, Natsagdorj Burged, Tungalag Khurelsukh, Nomin‐Erdene Baatar, Badmaarag Munkhjin, Jargaltulga Ulziijargal, Anuujin Gantumur, Oyunbaatar Altanbayar, Ochbadrakh Batjargal, Delgermu
    Immunity, Inflammation and Disease.2023;[Epub]     CrossRef

PHRP : Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives