Cyclosporine parasites continued to find Homo sapiens as hosts in at least seven states as the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta again marked the progress of the 16-state outbreak.  CDC’s official scorecard for the first time climbed over the 500 mark, reaching 504 confirmed cases on the one cell parasite climbing aboard unlucky folks in 16 states in the central and eastern parts of the county. The gain was 35 cases with the biggest increase– 19 more cases– coming in the Texas. Six other states also saw their Cyclospora numbers climb including: Iowa (5); Illinois (4); Arkansas (3): Florida (2); and one each for Missouri and Nebraska.  While the 16-state footprint of the outbreak did not change, the numbers of infections continued to focus on Texas, Iowa, and Nebraska. Those three states account for 428 or 84 percent of the cases. Here’s the current breakdown by state: Texas (190), Iowa (153), Nebraska (85), Florida (27), Wisconsin (11), Illinois (9), Arkansas (5), New York (6), Georgia (4), Kansas (3)‡, Louisiana (3), Missouri (3), Ohio (2), Connecticut (1), Minnesota (1), and New Jersey (1). About 30 people have required hospitalization, according to CDC. The transmission source for the parasite continues to be the subject of some debate by health officials. Iowa and Nebraska have blamed a salad mix grown in Mexico and distributed through grocery stores and restaurants including the Orlando-based Darden’s Olive Garden and Red Lobster outlets. CDC reports the investigation has not yet determined if the parasites are part of only one outbreak or multiple outbreaks. In its latest report, the agency says “CDC’s independent analyses of data from the epidemiologic investigations in Iowa and Nebraska confirmed an association between consuming salad and being ill with cyclosporiasis during June and July 2013 in those two states. This salad was determined to be a pre-packaged salad mix.” “On August 2, 2013, CDC received results of a traceback investigation from FDA . The traceback investigation conducted by FDA identified Taylor Farms de Mexico, S. de R.L. de C.V., a processor of foodservice salads, as the source of the pre-packaged salad mix identified in the cyclosporiasis outbreak in Iowa and Nebraska,” CDC’s report says. It adds: “At this stage of the investigation it is unclear if transmission is still occurring nationally and if all of the reported cases are part of the same outbreak.”