Listeria Outbreak Traced to Colo. Cantaloupes Claims Victims in Md., Va.

Publication: The Washington Post

Author: Dina ElBoghdady


09/23/2011 - A deadly food-borne bacteria linked to cantaloupes in more than a dozen states is suspected of killing one person in Maryland and sickening another in Virginia, health officials confirmed on Thursday.

Officials in Maryland and Virginia declined to identify the two people affected, but they said that each tested positive for a strain of listeria associated with the national outbreak that has killed eight people and sickened 55 in 14 states since early August. Most of the victims were older than 60, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

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The number of deaths and infections tied to the listeria outbreak has jumped in recent days. The numbers will most likely climb, because listeria has a long incubation period, said Erik Olson, a director at the Pew Health Group. Illness can manifest itself up to two months after the bacteria is consumed. “There’s a long wait-and-see period,” he said.

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Read the full article Listeria Outbreak Traced to Colo. Cantaloupes Claims Victims in Md., Va. on the Washington Post's Web site.

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