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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.

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Calling on All of Us Public Health Scientists
MJ Khoury et al, CDC Blog Post, July 22, 2022 Brand

Scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and elsewhere can now access and analyze data from the National Institutes of Health’s All of Us Research Program. In this post, we briefly explore three attributes of All of Us data that make them uniquely beneficial for public health scientists and other researchers interested in population health.

Prediction of COVID-19 Data Using Hybrid Modeling Approaches
W Zhao et al, Front Public Health, July 22, 2022

Using multiple sampling strategies to estimate SARS-CoV-2 epidemiological parameters from genomic sequencing data
RPD Inward et al, MEDRXIV, July 22, 2022

The Role of Children in SARS-CoV-2 Variant of Concerns Transmission within Households: A Meta-analysis
Y Zuo et al, MEDRXIV, July 22, 2022

We perform a meta-analysis of the role of children in the household transmission of both ancestral SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV-2 VOCs. Unlike the ancestral virus, children infected with VOCs spread SARS-CoV-2 to an equivalent number of household contacts as infected adults. Similarly, unlike the ancestral virus, children within a household were equally as likely as adults to acquire SARS-CoV-2 from an infected family member. Interestingly, this same observation was noted when unvaccinated children exposed to VOCs were compared to unvaccinated adults exposed to VOCs. Together, these data suggest that the emergence of VOCs were associated with a fundamental shift in the epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2.

The Effect of SARS-COV-2 Variant on Respiratory Features and Mortality Among Vaccinated and Non-Fully Vaccinated Patients
TD Hughes et al, MEDRXIV, July 22, 2022

A retrospective review of medical records (n=63,454 unique patients) using The University of California Health COvid Research Data Set (UC CORDS) was performed to identify respiratory features, vaccination status, and mortality. Variants were identified using the CDC data tracker. Results. Increased odds of death were observed among those not fully vaccinated (Delta OR: 1.64, p = 0.052; Omicron OR: 1.96, p < 0.01). Later variants (i.e., Delta and Omicron) demonstrated a reduction in the frequency of lower respiratory tract features with a concomitant increase in upper respiratory tract features. Vaccination status was associated with survival and a decrease in the frequency of many upper and lower respiratory tract features.

Analysis of Whole-Genome Sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 Reveals Recurrent Mutations among Iranian Patients
MH Abbasian et al, MEDRXIV, July 22, 2022

The deceptive simplicity of mendelian genetics.
McLysaght Aoife et al. PLoS biology 2022 7 (7) e3001691

Mendel, a genius experimentalist, meticulously uncovered the genetic basis of heredity in work that transformed the science of biology. But does the alluring simplicity of Mendel’s laws sometimes obscure the true complexity of genetics? We are not mere vessels for our genes. Humans, uniquely, and starting with Mendel, are the only species that has developed an understanding of heredity and how genetic information is transmitted across generations and how genes help shape all biological life on this planet. Though we describe supposed single-gene deterministic traits as “mendelian,” I know of no evidence that suggests Mendel himself conceived of such a fanciful system.

Disclaimer: Articles listed in Hot Topics of the Day are selected by the CDC Office of Public Health Genomics 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.