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zoom RSS ドイツでの大腸菌感染流行で新たな展開

<<   作成日時 : 2011/06/10 22:36   >>

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画像 ドイツでの死者は増加し世界で最も重大な大腸菌感染症流行となったが、流行は治まっているのかどうかや原因が何であるかといった点で新たな矛盾が浮上している。
 5月1日に発生して以来当初ドイツ当局は発生の原因はスペインからのキュウリ、トマト、レタスのせいにした。その後、先週末には北ドイツのもやしの可能性に注目していると切り替えた。
 しかし水曜日、北ドイツから遥か遠い東ドイツのマクデブルク州当局が、病原菌が生ゴミ処理されたキュウリから見つかったと発表して新たな展開がおきた。
 ダニエル・バール保健大臣は水曜日に今までに25人が死亡したと発表したが、さらにスウェーデンからも死者が報告された。
 ロベルト・コッホ研究所によれば、2,648人が発病し、689人は腎不全や神経障害を起こして重症であるといい、最悪事態が終了したとはとても確信できないとしている。
 キュウリや野菜の販売が少なくとも1/3以上低下した。当局は、キュウリ、トマト、レタス、もやしを食べないようにと消費者に警告した。
 ドイツ青果野菜生産協会は、生産者には1日700万ドルの損失が出ていると表明した。

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New Questions Rise in Cause and Trajectory of Germany E. Coli Outbreak
By ALAN COWELL and JUDY DEMPSEY
Published: June 8, 2011
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/09/world/europe/09ecoli.html

BERLIN ― As Germany’s tally of deaths increased in what has become one of the world’s most lethal infections of E. coli, new elements of confusion surfaced Wednesday with conflicting signals about whether the outbreak is abating and what caused it.

Initially, the German authorities blamed cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce from Spain for the infection, which has been spreading since May 1. Then, last weekend, investigators switched their attention to sprouts grown in northern Germany as a potential cause.

On Wednesday, even as the authorities said the sprouts were still prime suspects, the hunt took a new and apparently baffling turn when the state authorities in Magdeburg, in eastern Germany ― far from the original epicenter of the infection in northern Germany ― said traces of the pathogen identified in the outbreak had been found on discarded cucumber leftovers in a garbage can belonging to a family among those sickened by E. coli.

So far, Health Minister Daniel Bahr said Wednesday that the outbreak has claimed 25 lives in Germany ― four more than reported Tuesday. A further death has been reported from Sweden. In addition, 2,648 people have fallen ill, 689 of them with a potentially deadly complication that causes kidney failure and neurological damage, according to the Robert Koch Institute, the country’s disease control agency.

Holger Paech, the state health ministry spokesman in Magdeburg, said it was unclear how the bacteria got onto the cucumber at the home of a family where three people had sickened, one of them with the virulent complication whose treatment has strained intensive care units in many other parts of Germany.

The three family members had no known contact with the worst infected areas of northern Germany, he said.

The discarded cucumber had been in the garbage can for a week and a half, he said, and “there will always be an element of doubt” about how it had become contaminated.

On a broader scale, differences emerged Wednesday between the federal Health Ministry and the Robert Koch Institute over the status of the outbreak.

Mr. Bahr struck a cautiously optimistic tone on Wednesday during an emergency meeting in Berlin of health officials from Germany and the European Union.

“There is much to suggest that we have put the worst behind us,” he said.

While this did not mean the outbreak was fading, he said, it seemed that fewer people were being diagnosed.

The Robert Koch Institute, however, was far from certain that the worst was over.

“There is a declining trend in new cases but it is not clear that it is because the outbreak is really waning or whether it is because the population are being more careful in what they eat,” it said in a statement.

While cucumbers and other vegetables are still on display in some supermarkets here, vendors say sales have dropped by at least a third and possibly much more. The authorities have warned consumers to avoid eating cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce and sprouts. The German Association for Fruit and Vegetable producers said Wednesday that its members were losing the equivalent of $7 million a day because of the crisis.


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