Sheep as an important source of E. coli O157:H7 in Turkey

Escherichia coli O157:H7 is a globally important foodborne pathogen and has been mainly associated with cattle as the reservoir. However, accumulating data shows the importance of sheep as an E. coli O157:H7 vehicle.

sheep.shit.aug.12The presence of E. coli O157/O157:H7 in recto-anal mucosal swap and carcass sponge samples of 100 sheep brought to the slaughterhouse in Kirikkale were analyzed over a year. Molecular characteristics (stx1, stx2, eaeA, hly, lpfA1-3, espA, eae-α1, eae-α2, eae-β, eae-β1, eae-β2, eae-γ1, eae-γ2/θ, stx1c, stx1d, stx2c, stx2d, stx2e, stx2f, stx2g, blaampC, tet(A), tet(B), tet(C), tet(D), tet(E), tet(G), sul1, sul2, floR, cmlA, strA, strB and aadA) of 79 isolates were determined and minimum inhibitory concentrations of 20 different antibiotics were investigated. E. coli O157/O157:H7 was found in 18% of sheep included in the study and was more prevalent in yearlings than lambs and mature sheep, and male than female sheep, though none of the categories (season, sex or age range) had significant effect on prevalence. Furthermore, Shiga-toxigenic E. coli (STEC) O157:H7 was determined in 2% and 8% of sheep feces and carcasses, respectively. Additionally, lpfA1-3 and eae-γ1 were detected in all isolates. None of the isolates showed resistance against investigated antibiotics, even though 4 sorbitol fermenting E. coli O157 isolates were positive for tet(A), sul1 and aadA. This is the first study in Turkey that reveals the potential public health risk due to the contamination of sheep carcasses with potentially highly pathogenic STEC O157:H7 strains.

Yilmaz Emre Gencay

https://www.mysciencework.com/publication/show/7322026/sheep-as-an-important-source-of-e-coli-o157-o157-h7-in-turkey

Quantitative risk assessment of hemolytic and uremic syndrome linked to O157:H7 and non-O157:H7 shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli strains in raw milk soft cheeses

Shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) strains may cause human infections ranging from simple diarrhea to Haemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS). The five main pathogenic serotypes of STEC (MPS-STEC) identified thus far in Europe are O157:H7, O26:H11, O103:H2, O111:H8, and O145:H28.

raw.milk.cheeseBecause STEC strains can survive or grow during cheese making, particularly in soft cheeses, a stochastic quantitative microbial risk assessment model was developed to assess the risk of HUS associated with the five MPS-STEC in raw milk soft cheeses. A baseline scenario represents a theoretical worst-case scenario where no intervention was considered throughout the farm-to-fork continuum. The risk level assessed with this baseline scenario is the risk-based level. The impact of seven preharvest scenarios (vaccines, probiotic, milk farm sorting) on the risk-based level was expressed in terms of risk reduction. Impact of the preharvest intervention ranges from 76% to 98% of risk reduction with highest values predicted with scenarios combining a decrease of the number of cow shedding STEC and of the STEC concentration in feces. The impact of postharvest interventions on the risk-based level was also tested by applying five microbiological criteria (MC) at the end of ripening.

The five MCs differ in terms of sample size, the number of samples that may yield a value larger than the microbiological limit, and the analysis methods. The risk reduction predicted varies from 25% to 96% by applying MCs without preharvest interventions and from 1% to 96% with combination of pre- and postharvest interventions.

Risk Analysis
Frédérique Perrin, Fanny Tenenhaus-Aziza, Valérie Michel, Stéphane Miszczycha, Nadège Bel, and Moez Sanaa

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/risa.12267/abstract;jsessionid=74BD9124E68BA3CAA0FCD6112D55BB0C.f02t01

‘Our worst nightmare coming to life’: UK family contracted E. coli O157 on holiday to Spain with toddler daughter left in critical condition

A family of four fell ‘horrifically’ ill during a Spanish summer holiday which left two young daughters in hospital, one in critical condition.

e.coli.spain.aug.14The Smith family, from Bishop Auckland in County Durham, travelled to the 3* Azuline, Coral Beach resort in Ibiza in June, but say the trip turned into every family’s ‘worst nightmare’ when all of them fell ill and two-year-old daughters Olivia and Hannah were hospitalised for days as they battled E. coli. 

Dad, Stuart, who was made redundant on his return to work, was also diagnosed with having contracted the bacteria.

The toddlers have now been diagnosed with hemolytic uraemia syndrome – a condition related to E. coli which can cause kidney failure due to a breakdown of red blood cells – and distraught parents Stuart and Nicola have instructed expert international illness lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate what caused them to fall ill and to help secure their daughters funds for on-going treatment.

To make matters worse, Stuart was made redundant on his return from his job as a production worker in manufacturing, as he took time off to care for his daughters, which affected his redundancy score negatively. 

Stuart, Olivia and Hannah were all diagnosed as suffering with E. coli O157 on their return and the girls symptoms were so severe that they were admitted to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Newcastle. 

Olivia, who was two in July, was discharged after six days but Hannah, who turns three at the end of the month, spent 21 days in hospital and needed dialysis to help her kidneys function properly.

Stuart, 38, said: ‘The last few weeks have been like our worst nightmare coming to life as we have had to watch our little girls fight for their lives in hospital.

‘The last thing we imagined was that we would all fall so horrifically ill. We did notice that some of the food that should have been chilled was left at room temperature and some of it was undercooked, but we tried to be as careful as possible.

‘The worst thing now is not knowing whether the girls have been left with permanent kidney problems as a result. We just cannot believe how going on holiday has turned all of our lives upside down.

It’s not that simple and handwashing is never enough; trying to stay healthy around state fair animals? Simple–wash your hands

For many visitors to the Minnesota State Fair, wandering through the animal barns, listening to the indignant squeals of jostling pigs or watching a 1,500 pound cow unfurl its long tongue to snag an out-of-reach kernel of grain, is one of the fair’s great pleasures.

fair_46But even though the animals are bathed and brushed to perfection, they can carry germs that can make people sick.

The risk was made apparent earlier this month, when an E-coli outbreak that sickened 13 people was traced to a traveling petting zoo that appeared at several Minnesota county fairs and festivals. Seven people were hospitalized and two patients developed serious kidney complications.

Probably the potato salad? 60 sick from E. coli O157 at Minnesota events

All signs point to the potato salad — or more likely one of the raw ingredients that goes into it — as being the cause of the E.coli outbreak that sickened some 60 people on the Fond du Lac Reservation in July.

potato.saladAccording to word from Doug Schultz, spokesperson for the Minnesota Department of Health, on Wednesday, the investigation has revealed that the illness came from three separate events, the Elders’ Picnic, a private wedding and a three-day conference. All were held on the reservation between the dates of July 11-16, and all were catered by the same entity.

“After interviewing a good percentage of the people involved,” said Schultz, “there are clear indications that the potato salad was the likely vehicle for the illness,” which he added came from the O157 strain of E.coli — one of the most common forms.

The investigation unveiled, however, that potato salad was only served at two of the three events, which leads investigators to suspect one of the raw products that goes into the salad, such as celery or onions.

“We haven’t yet been able to definitely prove just what that was,” said Schultz. “At first, we thought it was the celery, but we were unable to find any pathogens on the celery we tested.”

13 sick with E. coli O157 linked to traveling petting zoo in Minnesota

Today is a state holiday in Queensland (that’s in Australia) as 60,000 or so will flock to the Ekka, the equivalent of a state fair.

ekka.petting.zoo_1-300x225We’re not going.

I got enough pictures the first two years, and wisely didn’t go last year when at least 50 were sickened with E. coli O157 linked to the animal displays.

Not a word about that outbreak from health types, fair types, or anyone, except locals who say, beware the Ekka winds, and wash hands.

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH, that’s in the U.S.) has a much better history of identifying and following up on outbreaks, and reports today it has identified at least 13 people who have developed E. coli O157:H7 infections as part of an outbreak associated with Zerebko Zoo Tran traveling petting zoo. All of these cases have infections with E. coli O157:H7 bacteria that have the same DNA fingerprint. Two of these are secondary cases resulting from being exposed to one of the primary cases associated with the petting zoo.

The 13 cases range in age from 2 to 68 years, 10 (77 percent) are female, and they are residents of multiple counties. Seven (54 percent) cases have been hospitalized, including three children. Two of the cases developed a serious complication known as hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which affects kidney function. Currently, one case is hospitalized with HUS.

The petting zoo exhibited at the events listed below between July 4 and July 27, and there have been cases associated with each one:

Nashwauk 4th of July Festival (7/3-7/5): 1 case

Polk County Fair (7/9-7/13): 1 case

Rice County Fair (7/15-7/20): 7 cases (including the 2 secondary cases)

Olmsted County Fair (7/21-7/27): 3 cases

MDH is currently following up with one case regarding their potential animal exposures prior to their illness. Additional cases associated with attending the Olmsted County Fair could still be identified, as that was the most recent event where Zerebko Zoo Tran exhibited.

royal.petting.zooEnvironmental and animal fecal samples collected from Zerebko Zoo Tran yielded the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7. The owner has been cooperating in the investigation and voluntarily withheld his animals from the last two county fairs at which he was scheduled to exhibit in August.

E. coli O157:H7 is commonly found in ruminant animals such as cattle, goats, and sheep. Outbreaks associated with these animals are documented virtually every year in Minnesota. Therefore, people who contact ruminants at any venue, public or private, are at risk for infection with E. coli O157:H7 as well as a variety of other germs. People typically become ill by getting bacteria on their hands after touching the animals or contaminated surfaces, and then swallowing the germs while eating, drinking or during other hand-to-mouth activities. Contamination can be present on the fur or in the saliva of animals, in the soil where these animals are kept, or on surfaces such as fence railings of animal pens.

“These illnesses are a stark reminder that E. coli O157:H7 can be present in even the cleanest of animal operations,” said MDH State Public Health Veterinarian Dr. Joni Scheftel. Risk associated with animal contact can be reduced through the following measures:

Visitors to animal exhibits should be made aware that even healthy, well-tended animals can have germs that can make people seriously ill.

Food, drinks, and items that promote hand-to-mouth contact (for example, pacifiers) should not be brought into animal areas.

Hands should be washed with soap and water immediately after visiting the animals. Hand sanitizers are not a substitute for soap and running water but may afford some protection until soap and water are available. They do not work well against some germs and when hands are visibly soiled.

Children under 5 years, seniors, pregnant women, and people with a chronic health condition or a weak immune system are prone to serious complications from E. coli infections and should take extra care around animals. 

Best practices for planning events encouraging human-animal interactions

Zoonoses and Public Health

G. Erdozain , K. KuKanich , B. Chapman  and D. Powell

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/zph.12117/abstract?deniedAccess

Educational events encouraging human–animal interaction include the risk of zoonotic disease transmission. It is estimated that 14% of all disease in the US caused by Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O157, non-O157 STECs, Listeria monocytogenes, nontyphoidal Salmonella enterica and Yersinia enterocolitica were attributable to animal contact. This article reviews best practices for organizing events where human–animal interactions are encouraged, with the objective of lowering the risk of zoonotic disease transmission.

A table of petting zoo outbreaks is available at http://barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Petting-Zoo-Outbreaks-Table-4-8-14.xlsx.

8 sick: Minnesota preliminary test results of petting zoo animals positive for E. coli O157

The E. coli bacteria that sickened at least eight in the area came from a traveling petting zoo, according to preliminary test results released by the state on Friday.

goat.petting.zooThe Minnesota Department of Health received the positive preliminary test results after taking samples from animals that were part of the Zerebko Zoo Tran petting zoo at the Rice County Fair in mid-July.

Wally Zerebko, owner of Zerebko Zoo Tran in Bovey, said the preliminary results are inconclusive. As the Department of Health continues to investigate and await the final results, Zerebko and his animals remain at home.

“They are telling me lives are at stake, I know that,” he said. “That’s why I am at home and why I encouraged them to come down and test. … I’m not out here to get kids sick. I’m trying to make a living.”

Ekka winds: is handwashing really enough to prevent petting zoo outbreaks?

Even though it’s 70F during the day in the depths of winter, the Ekka winds, as the locals call them, have hit hard.

There’s a nasty flu strain going around that knocked all of us out for 10 days even with a flu shot, because, getting old and all that.

ekka.petting.zooWe all missed hockey last week, and the guy I coach with just called to say he’s knocked out for this weekend.

The Ekka is the Queensland state fair.

When I ask locals if they go to the Ekka, they say, no, everyone gets sick.

Last year was particularly bad, as at least 50 were sickened with E. coli O157.

There has been no public follow up, no reference to what is being done to improve the situation this year, and no chance we’ll be attending.

Queensland Health, in all its taxpayer-funded splendor, wrote yesterday that visitors to this year’s Royal Queensland Show (the Ekka) are reminded of the importance of washing their hands after interacting with animals.

This year’s show will feature a redesigned animal nursery to minimise the risk of illness due to contact with animals. This will ensure that everyone leaving it must exit through specially designed hand washing stations.

According to Queensland Health, the most important precautionary measure to minimising this risk is timely hand washing, particularly after animal petting or feeding, and avoiding contact with potentially contaminated articles such as animal bedding.

That’s nice, but incomplete. Many pathogens can be aerosolized, and have been in previous petting zoo outbreaks.

A table of petting zoo outbreaks is available at http://barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Petting-Zoo-Outbreaks-Table-4-8-14.xlsx.

Best practices for planning events encouraging human-animal interactions

Zoonoses and Public Health

G. Erdozain , K. KuKanich , B. Chapman  and D. Powell

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/zph.12117/abstract?deniedAccess

Educational events encouraging human–animal interaction include the risk of zoonotic disease transmission. It is estimated that 14% of all disease in the US caused by Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O157, non-O157 STECs, Listeria monocytogenes, nontyphoidal Salmonella enterica and Yersinia enterocolitica were attributable to animal contact. This article reviews best practices for organizing events where human–animal interactions are encouraged, with the objective of lowering the risk of zoonotic disease transmission.

8 sick? E. coli O157:H7 confirmed at Minnesota fair

A Nerstrand woman whose husband became ill believes that he was dealing with E. coli after attending the fair.

Bernadette Johnson said her husband, Greg, was stricken with a severe illness for six days. After talking with others, she was made aware of four of their friends who were struggling with a similar illness.

petting.zoo.guidelines“At the time we didn’t think anything of it,” she said. “But then we talked to other people, and a lot of people had the same symptoms.”

The symptoms included cramps, spending a lot of time in the bathroom and overall not feeling well, symptoms similar to those of E. coli. However, none of them went to the hospital, as they figured it was a bug.

Johnson said Greg was in and out of the barns Thursday through Sunday during the fair and also went through the petting zoo.

The Minnesota Department of Health has diagnosed eight total E. coli cases, although only six of the eight attended the Rice County Fair. The Department of Health did not release the names of the other fairs involved; however, they have made them aware of the E. coli cases.

As the Department of Health continues to investigate the cases, they have confirmed that the E. coli strain found is E. coli O157:H7, the most severe. Of the eight cases that have been reported between July 9 and July 24, five have required hospitalization.

Best practices for planning events encouraging human-animal interactions

Zoonoses and Public Health

G. Erdozain , K. KuKanich , B. Chapman  and D. Powell

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/zph.12117/abstract?deniedAccess

Educational events encouraging human–animal interaction include the risk of zoonotic disease transmission. It is estimated that 14% of all disease in the US caused by Campylobacter spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O157, non-O157 STECs, Listeria monocytogenes, nontyphoidal Salmonella enterica and Yersinia enterocolitica were attributable to animal contact. This article reviews best practices for organizing events where human–animal interactions are encouraged, with the objective of lowering the risk of zoonotic disease transmission.

A table of petting zoo outbreaks is available at http://barfblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Petting-Zoo-Outbreaks-Table-4-8-14.xlsx.

E. coli O157 strikes UK boy in 2012; specialist recalls little Bo’s ‘darkest days’

Ian Ramage, consultant nephrologist at Yorkhill Children’s Hospital in Glasgow, has treated Bo since he first arrived from Aberdeenshire in May 2012.

Bo-Cox-and-Lucy-Cox-3-660x496He said the “darkest days” in the youngster’s treatment were when it became clear how seriously the infection had damaged him.

Mr Ramage said: “I think the darkest days were not the times when he was most unwell, but when we realised that he would pull through and that he would be blind and require a stoma.

“All our energies had gone into keeping him alive, then we realised the burden his health would have on him and on Lucy.”

He said most children make a full recovery from E. coli, but added that those who do not generally suffer renal failure – as Bo did – and require a kidney transplant

However, the state of Bo’s bowel, which was left with five holes in it after being attacked by the bacteria, further complicated his case.

Meanwhile, new guidelines on managing the risks of E.coli have been hailed as a victory for common sense.

Tell it to Bo.