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Foodborne Illness Investigations

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Cyclospora cases through the roof; CDC can’t find source

Previous outbreaks were traced to fresh produce, ranging from imported cilantro to berries

Almost 1,000 people in the United States have contracted infections from  Cyclospora parasites since May 1. Health officials are baffled, saying they haven’t been able to discover the source of the microscopic creatures, which infect humans via contaminated food and/or water. There were 988 laboratory-confirmed victims in the ongoing outbreak, spread across 40 states, as… Continue Reading

Eight E. coli cases in Wisconsin county prompt investigation

Local health officials are investigating eight reports of E. coli infections in La Crosse County, WI, according to local media reports. However, neither the city of La Crosse nor the La Crosse County government had any information about the cluster of illnesses on their websites as of Tuesday night. Media in the area, which is… Continue Reading

WGS could be WMD in global battle against foodborne illness

Opinion

Editor’s note: This column by FDA’s Steven Musser and Eric L. Stevens was originally published on the agency’s blog. FDA is laying the foundation for the use of whole genome sequencing (WGS) to protect consumers from foodborne illness in countries all over the world. We recently traveled to Geneva to join a meeting of the Codex… Continue Reading

Texas raw milk Brucella contamination hits 7 states

Although it is against federal law to sell unpasteurized milk across state lines, the CDC and state health departments are investigating illnesses in at least seven states in relation to Brucella bacteria found in raw milk from a Texas dairy. One woman in Texas has been in the hospital for weeks with a lab-confirmed case… Continue Reading

CDC expands on Texas warning about Brucella in raw milk

A month after Texas public health officials urged raw milk drinkers and their doctors to be on the lookout for symptoms of Brucella infection, the federal government weighed in with its own advice. Anyone who drank unpasteurized, “raw” milk from the K-Bar Dairy in Paradise, TX, from June 1 through Aug. 7 is “at an… Continue Reading

Papaya Salmonella outbreak slams Hispanic population in U.S.

Four U.S. outbreaks traced to papayas from Mexico have sickened 235; more cases expected

The popularity of fresh papaya in some ethnic cuisine is resulting in a disproportionate number of Hispanics being infected in four ongoing Salmonella outbreaks. With 235 laboratory confirmed infections as of this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports the number of Hispanic victims in the individual outbreaks ranges from 50 percent to… Continue Reading

Raw milk cheese tied to listeria cases; moms-to-be at high risk

At least two people in Rhode Island have developed infections from Listeria monocytogenes, causing public health officials to warn against eating soft cheese referred to as queso fresco. An alert posted Wednesday by the Rhode Island Department of Health did not include any details about the two victims, but specifically urged pregnant women to not… Continue Reading

Officials: Misuse of cheese, dispenser caused botulism outbreak

California report on April-May outbreak still pending; no action yet against business owner

As victims of botulism poisoning traced to gas station nacho cheese continue to deal with severe health problems four and a half months after becoming ill, California health officials are trying to decide whether to fine the gas station owner. The illnesses began in late April. The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) began its… Continue Reading

CDC discovers fourth Salmonella outbreak linked to papayas

Federal and state officials are investigating another deadly Salmonella outbreak traced to papayas imported from Mexico, but they have not named retailers that sold the contaminated fruit. At least 14 people across Arizona, California and Colorado have been confirmed with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Anatum, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention…. Continue Reading

On the Border restaurant facing federal suit in Salmonella case

A Georgia couple has filed suit against On the Border Mexican Grill and Cantina alleging their Mother’s Day meal resulted in a Salmonella infection, a two-week hospital stay and lingering health problems that likely will never end. Amanda and Jason Cureton filed the civil suit in federal court in Atlanta on Aug. 29. The Marietta,… Continue Reading