Thursday, June 2, 2011
Deadly European E. Coli Outbreak Is New Strain of Bacterium
By Ian Froeb
on Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 8:00 AM
a new and more virulent strain of the bacterium
, reports the Guardian
Preliminary genetic sequencing suggests the strain is a mutant form of two different E coli bacteria, with lethal genes that could explain why the Europe-wide outbreak appeared to be so big and dangerous, the [World Health Organziation] said.
Scientists have no idea what the source of the E. coli was. Officials in Germany, the apparent epicenter of the outbreak, originally blamed cucumbers from Spain, but this was incorrect.
Well, this is alarming: Scientists say the E. coli responsible for an outbreak in Europe that has killed at least seventeen people and sickened hundreds more is