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Category Press Release
Publish Date 6/6/2024
Author Paul Cochrane
Title Health Advisory Issued in NYC after Rise in Leptospirosis Cases
Introduction EMSL Analytical offers rapid qPCR testing services for Leptospira, the bacterium that causes leptospirosis, to provide for the identification of the pathogen from environmental samples.

Manhattan, New York, June 6, 2024

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (NYC Health) issued a health advisory in April that warned of the continued increase in leptospirosis cases in the city. In just the previous year, NYC Health experienced the highest number of cases ever in the city.

Leptospirosis is caused by bacteria of the genus Leptospira. It is a disease that affects humans and animals and can cause a wide range of symptoms, or none at all. Without treatment, leptospirosis can lead to kidney damage, meningitis, liver failure, respiratory distress and even death.

According to the NYC Health advisory:

Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease that is present globally and caused by several species of a spirochete bacteria of the genus Leptospira. In NYC, the primary species is Leptospira interrorgans, serogroup Icterohaemorrhagiae which is associated with the Norway rat. Infected animals excrete the bacteria in their urine, and bacteria can persist in warm, moist environments for weeks. 

“The bacteria can infect people if they come in contact with urine (or other body fluids, except saliva) from an infected animal or have contact with water, soil or food contaminated with infected urine,” said Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “To help identify environmental exposure risks to Leptospira, the infection control laboratories at EMSL Analytical offer rapid environmental testing services for the bacteria utilizing qPCR techniques that provide for extremely accurate results. These tests can be used proactively to help prevent new infections and for quickly identifying potential sources of an infection if one has already occurred.”

Several years ago, EMSL sponsored an educational video about leptospirosis and various occupational and environmental exposure risks to Leptospira that can still be seen at: https://youtu.be/m23WDvym2bY 

To learn more about testing for Leptospira or other infection control, environmental, health and safety services, please contact EMSL Analytical at www.EMSL.com, call (800)220-3675 or email info@EMSL.com.

 

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical is one of the leading testing laboratories with locations throughout the United States and Canada. EMSL is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider specializing in fast laboratory results for mold, bacteria, Legionella, USP <797>, pathogens, asbestos, lead, soot, char & ash from fires, VOCs, odors, radon, formaldehyde, indoor air quality, microbiology, environmental, industrial hygiene, radiological, food, beverage & consumer products and material testing services for the identification of unknown substances. EMSL services both professionals and the general public. EMSL maintains an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies including, but not limited to A2LA, AIHA LAP, LLC. (AIHA EMLAP, AIHA IHLAP, AIHA ELLAP), NVLAP, CDC ELITE, CPSC, CA ELAP, NY ELAP, TX DOH, NJDEP and multiple other state accrediting agencies. Please visit our website at www.EMSL.com for a complete listing of accreditations. In addition, EMSL carries a wide range of Sampling Equipment and Investigative Products for environmental professionals.


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