Foodborne Infection Originates in Meat and Poultry
Ninety-seven percent of human disease from the pathogenic bacterium C. jejuni originates in animals farmed for meat and poultry, according to a study by researchers at Lancaster University, Lancaster, U.K. Researchers analyzed DNA from 1,231 cases of C. jejuni infections in Lancashire, England. Only 3 percent of cases were traced back to environmental contamination or wild animal sources, while 97 percent of cases were traced back to farm-raised chickens, cattle, and sheep. These results implicate livestock as the primary transmission route for the leading cause of gastroenteritis in the developed world, which is thought to infect 2 to 3 million people per year in the U.S. alone.
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