The bacteria behind melioidosis, a deadly tropical disease, has been identified for the first time in the United States

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified the bacteria behind the potentially fatal disease melioidosis for the first time on US soil. announced (opens in new tab) Wednesday (July 27).

Historically speaking bacteriais called Burkholderia pseudomallei, mainly seen in Southeast Asia and northern Australia, where many cases of melioidosis occur each year, but the bacteria are also found in Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and parts of Central and South America. Only about 12 cases in an average year melioidosis Occurs in the US and these cases are usually associated with international travel to any country B. pseudomallei often grown, or imported products. For example, in 2021, two people fell ill and another two died imported aromatherapy spray contaminated with bacteria.

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