Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

Hot Topics of the Day|PHGKB
Search PHGKB:


Hot Topics of the Day are picked by experts to capture the latest information and publications on public health genomics and precision health for various diseases and health topics. Sources include published scientific literature, reviews, blogs and popular press articles.

Sign up MyPHGKB to receive the daily hot topic email alert.

Search Archive:
Archived Hot Topics of the Day By Date

Newborn Screening by Genomic Sequencing: Opportunities and Challenges
D Bick et al, IJNS, July 20, 2022

Newborn screening for treatable disorders is one of the great public health success stories of the twentieth century worldwide. This commentary examines the potential use of a new technology, next generation sequencing, in newborn screening through the lens of the Wilson and Jungner criteria. Each of the ten criteria are examined to show how they might be applied by programs using genomic sequencing as a screening tool. While there are obvious advantages to a method that can examine all disease-causing genes in a single assay at an ever-diminishing cost, implementation of genomic sequencing at scale presents numerous challenges,

The Progress and Future of US Newborn Screening
MS Watson et al, IJNS, July 20, 2022

Progress in newborn screening (NBS) has been driven for 60 years by developments in science and technology, growing consumer advocacy, the actions of providers involved in the care of rare disease patients, and by federal and State government funding and policies. With the current explosion of clinical trials of treatments for rare diseases, the pressure for expansion has grown, and concerns about the capacity for improvement and growth are being expressed. Genome and exome sequencing (GS/ES) have now opened more opportunities for early identification and disease prevention at all points in the lifespan.

Modelling the Cost-Effectiveness and Budget Impact of a Newborn Screening Program for Spinal Muscular Atrophy and Severe Combined Immunodeficiency
STF Shih et al, IJNS, July 20, 2022

Over a 60-year time horizon, screening every newborn in the population and treating diagnosed SCID by early hematopoietic stem cell transplantation and SMA by gene therapy, would result in 95 QALYs gained per 100,000 newborns, and result in cost savings of USD 8.6 million. Sensitivity analysis indicates 97% of simulated results are considered cost-effective against commonly used willingness-to-pay thresholds. The introduction of combined NBS for SCID and SMA is good value for money from the long-term clinical and economic perspectives, representing a cost saving to governments in the long-term, as well as improving and saving lives

Prediction of hospital-onset COVID-19 infections using dynamic networks of patient contact: an international retrospective cohort study
A Myall et al, The Lancet, August 2022

We report an international retrospective cohort study of our framework, which extracted patient-contact networks from routine hospital data and combined network-derived variables with clinical and contextual information to predict individual infection risk. We trained and tested the framework on HOCIs using the data from 51?157 hospital inpatients admitted to a UK National Health Service hospital group. The framework was highly predictive across test data with all variable types (area under the curve [AUC]-receiver operating characteristic curve [ROC] 0·89 [95% CI 0·88–0·90]) and similarly predictive using only contact-network variables (0·88 [0·86–0·90]).

Comparative effectiveness of ChAdOx1 versus BNT162b2 covid-19 vaccines in health and social care workers in England: cohort study using OpenSAFELY
WJ Hulme et al, BMJ, July 20, 2022

In this cohort of healthcare workers where we would not anticipate vaccine type to be related to health status, we found no substantial differences in the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection or covid-19 disease up to 20 weeks after vaccination. Incidence dropped sharply at 3-4 weeks after vaccination, and there were few covid-19 related hospital attendance and admission events after this period. This is in line with expected onset of vaccine induced immunity and suggests strong protection against Alpha variant covid-19 disease for both vaccines in this relatively young and healthy population of healthcare workers.

Generalizable Long COVID Subtypes: Findings from the NIH N3C and RECOVER Programs
J Reese et al, MEDRXIV, July 20, 2022

The natural history of long COVID is incompletely understood and characterized by an extremely wide range of manifestations that are difficult to analyze computationally. In addition, the generalizability of machine learning classification of COVID-19 clinical outcomes has rarely been tested. We present a method for computationally modeling PASC phenotype data based on electronic healthcare records (EHRs) and for assessing pairwise phenotypic similarity between patients using semantic similarity.

Exome-wide association study to identify rare variants influencing COVID-19 outcomes: Results from the Host Genetics Initiative
GB Laporte et al, MEDRXIV, July 20, 2022

We combined whole-exome and whole-genome sequencing from 21 cohorts across 12 countries and performed rare variant exome-wide burden analyses for COVID-19 outcomes. In an analysis of 5,085 severe disease cases and 571,737 controls, we observed that carrying a rare deleterious variant in the SARS-CoV-2 sensor toll-like receptor TLR7 (on chromosome X) was associated with a 5.3-fold increase in severe disease (95% CI: 2.75-10.05, p=5.41x10-7). This association was consistent across sexes. These results further support TLR7 as a genetic determinant of severe disease.

CFTR genotype analysis of Asians in international registries highlights disparities in the diagnosis and treatment of Asian patients with cystic fibrosis.
Vaidyanathan Sriram et al. Genetics in medicine : official journal of the American College of Medical Genetics 2022 7

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is not well-characterized in Asians, potentially resulting in delayed diagnosis and poor prognosis. We characterized CF in Asian subgroups to address these disparities. The prevalence of CF was 1 in 74,982 people (Canada) to 1 in 13,340 people (United Kingdom) for South Asians and 1 in 256,541 (Canada) to 1 in 52,563 (United Kingdom) for other Asians, suggesting 26,000 to 146,000 patients with CF in South Asia. p.(F508del) variant was markedly less frequent in Asians than in non-Hispanic Whites. Splicing and nonsense variants occurred at high allelic frequencies in Asians, resulting in 41% to 49% of South Asians and 21% to 39% of other Asians being ineligible for CFTR modulator therapies. Hologic/EU2v1 panels failed to identify 37% to 47% of South Asian and 23% to 46% of other Asian patients with CF.

Human–machine teaming is key to AI adoption: clinicians’ experiences with a deployed machine learning system
KE Henry et al, NPJ Digital Medicine, July 21, 2022

Based on a qualitative analysis of coded interviews with clinicians who use an ML-based system for sepsis, we found that, rather than viewing the system as a surrogate for their clinical judgment, clinicians perceived themselves as partnering with the technology. Our findings suggest that, even without a deep understanding of machine learning, clinicians can build trust with an ML system through experience, expert endorsement and validation, and systems designed to accommodate clinicians’ autonomy and support them across their entire workflow.

Disclaimer: Articles listed in Hot Topics of the Day are selected by the CDC Office of Genomics and Precision Public Health to provide current awareness of the scientific literature and news. Inclusion in the update does not necessarily represent the views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention nor does it imply endorsement of the article's methods or findings. CDC and DHHS assume no responsibility for the factual accuracy of the items presented. The selection, omission, or content of items does not imply any endorsement or other position taken by CDC or DHHS. Opinion, findings and conclusions expressed by the original authors of items included in the Clips, or persons quoted therein, are strictly their own and are in no way meant to represent the opinion or views of CDC or DHHS. References to publications, news sources, and non-CDC Websites are provided solely for informational purposes and do not imply endorsement by CDC or DHHS.