Category Archives: water microbiology

USA – Lake Nokomis E. coli Outbreak Has Sickened 49

Food Poisoning Bulletin

The Lake Nokomis E. coli outbreak has now sickened 49 people, including the three confirmed cases of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) in children that were announced earlier this week, according to a news release by the Minnesota Department of Health. That lake is located in Minneapolis.

Research -Toxin responsible for Legionella growth identified

Science Daily

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Pneumonia resulting from exposure to Legionella — although uncommon and affecting only 1 in 100,000 in Europe — has a higher than 10% fatality rate. The pathogenic bacterium Legionella pneumophila has more than 300 toxins that it uses to infect humans. Once the aerosols containing the bacteria are inhaled, Legionella enters the lungs where it starts infecting human cells, causing pneumonia.

Legionella toxins especially target the innate immune pathways facilitating the survival of the bacteria inside human cells and allowing the replication of the bacteria. Due to the large number of toxins it is difficult to see the effects of deleting one or multiple of these toxins on the Legionella infection capacities. This is further complicated by the fact that several toxins with similar functions exist inside the bacteria. This makes Legionella hard to target with specific drugs.

USA – E. coli hits South Dakota – Sisseton Area

Food Poison Journal

According to KSFY, the South Dakota Department of Health is investigating several cases of E. coli in northeastern South Dakota. The cases are in and around the Sisseton area.

Source not identified

USA – Sheraton Atlanta Legionnaires’ disease: 11 confirmed, 55 probable outbreak cases

Outbreak News Today

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In a follow-up on the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak linked to the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel, the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) reports 11 lab-confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease and 55 probable cases of Legionnaires’ disease related to this outbreak through July 29.

No deaths have been reported.

Probable cases are people who had illness consistent with Legionnaires’ disease, including pneumonia diagnosed by a clinician or chest X-ray, but without laboratory confirmation. The number of probable cases can change based on additional testing and lab results.

Since the first cases of Legionnaires’ disease were confirmed two weeks ago, epidemiologists from DPH and Fulton County Board of Health (FCBOH)  have been reviewing hundreds of survey responses from individuals who stayed at or visited the Sheraton Atlanta between June 12 and July 15, 2019. The surveys help identify people who may have been ill, especially those with severe illness like pneumonia.

New Zealand – Shellfish biotoxin alerts – Hawkes Bay


The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) today issued a public health warning advising the public not to collect or consume shellfish harvested from the Hawkes Bay Coast between Mahanga Beach south to Porangahau Beach.

Routine tests on shellfish samples taken from this region have shown levels of Paralytic Shellfish Poisoning (PSP) toxins above the safe limit of 0.8 mg/kg set by MPI. Anyone eating shellfish from this area is potentially at risk of illness.

Map highlighting in red the areas affected.

Mussels, oysters, tuatua, pipi, toheroa, cockles, scallops, catseyes, kina (sea urchin) and all other bivalve shellfish.

Note, cooking shellfish does not remove the toxin.

Pāua, crab and crayfish may still be eaten if the gut has been completely removed prior to cooking, as toxins accumulate in the gut. If the gut is not removed its contents could contaminate the meat during the cooking process.

USA – 10 Sick in Chesterfield Legionnaires’ Disease Outbreak

Outbreak News Today

CDC legionella

Image CDC


press release from the Virginia Department of Health announced that 10 people are sick in Chesterfield, Virginia in a Legionnaires’ Disease outbreak. The 10 confirmed illnesses are more cases then the county sees during the summer, which is usually 3 cases. Due to this outbreak, a Chesterfield school was forced to close. The health department is working with the CDC to identify the outbreak source.

USA – FDA warns about fresh basil imported from Siga Logistics de RL de CV from Morelos in Mexico – Cyclospora

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Consumers should not buy, eat, or serve any fresh basil exported by Siga Logistics de RL de CV from Morelos, Mexico to the United States.

The fresh basil from Siga Logistics de RL de CV located in Morelos, Mexico is the subject of a multi-state outbreak investigation of Cyclospora illnesses potentially linked to fresh basil exported by Siga Logistics de RL de CV located in Morelos, Mexico.

As of July 9, health official found 132 illnesses in ten states that are attributed to the outbreak.   Four patients required hospitalization.   Restaurants in Florida, Minnesota, New York and Ohio exposed patrons to the parasite.

Cyclospora is a parasite typically transmitted by contaminated food.    Some areas, such as Massachusetts, are this year experiencing higher Cyclosproa case counts than normal. States with Cyclospora cases associated with the current outbreak are found in CT, FL, IA, MA, MN, NY, OH, RI, SC, and WI.