A Common Hospital Infection May be Coming To Us From Food
One of the most common and troubling infections that occur in healthcare may come from an unexpected source, according to a new paper: from food. Yet because it is not one of the bacteria that we think of as disease-causing foodborne organisms, the size of the threat it poses, and the way it reaches us, may not be well understood.
The infection is Klebsiella pneumoniae, a stubborn gut-dwelling organism that can cause pneumonia, bloodstream infections and meningitis. The finding that it is present in food—and in some cases, practically genetically identical in food and in hospitals—comes from a multi-institute project that for several years has been closely analyzing pathogens found on supermarket meat and in hospital patients in Flagstaff, Ariz. The collaboration chose Flagstaff