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Friday, March 2, 2012

Australia : Research links melioidosis to stormwater run-off

Via ABC News :

" A north Queensland PhD student has uncovered a deadly link between stormwater run-off and the tropical disease melioidosis.

The disease can be fatal, and up until now was commonly believed to be spread through soil, where it naturally lives.

James Cook University's Andrew Baker discovered organisms linked to the disease in groundwater.

He says until more research is done, residents in the Torres Strait and north Queensland should take heed of the warning.

"You go out after rain and you see a lot of kids splashing around in the water and having fun," he said.

"If people are aware that this is a problem we can stop people going out playing in fresh water that is run-off then we could see a decrease in the number of casualties of melioidosis each year."

He says discovering the disease in stormwater run-off might explain why more infection rates are recorded after a big wet season."

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