Cinnaminson, NJ, May 20th, 2015
Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) posted information about a multidrug-resistant intestinal illness that is occurring throughout the United States. The illness is believed to have been spread by international travelers who have brought back a type of Shigella bacteria that is resistant to the antibiotic ciprofloxacin (Cipro).
When infected travelers have returned to the United States, other people have been infected resulting in outbreaks of shigellosis. According to the CDC, the agency knows of 243 people in 32 states and Puerto Rico who have been sickened between May 2014 and February 2015. The CDC and public health partners recently investigated several clusters of shigellosis in Massachusetts, California and Pennsylvania and found that nearly 90% of the cases tested were resistant to Cipro, the first choice antibiotic used to treat shigellosis among adults in the United States.
“Shigellosis is the name of the highly infectious disease caused by a group of bacteria known as Shigella,” said Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “It is believed to be transmitted primarily through the fecal-oral route. Surfaces can easily become contaminated in places such as schools, nursing homes, daycare centers, prisons and other locations with crowded conditions. Also, food products can become contaminated with Shigella and it has been the cause of numerous product recalls over the last several years.”
For those concerned about the presence of Shigella on surfaces or in foods and water, EMSL Analytical, Inc. offers qPCR testing services and sampling supplies. Testing can also be instrumental in identifying the source of a shigellosis outbreak if one has already occurred.
EMSL has sponsored an online video about Shigella and shigellosis from contaminated environments that can be seen at: http://youtu.be/FI6nC5zZMZc.
To learn more about testing for Shigella or other microbial pathogens and contaminants, please visit www.EMSL.com or www.FoodTestingLab.com for inquires related to food, call (800) 220-3675 or email info@EMSL.com.
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, indoor air quality, consumer product and materials testing services and products for professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.