Brucellosis outbreak infects over 6,000 people in China

WION Web Team
Lanzhou, China Published: Nov 05, 2020, 07:04 PM(IST)

Thousands infected with brucellosis after factory leak in China's Lanzhou Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

According to the World Health Organization, humans get brucellosis with flu-like symptoms through direct contact with infected animals, by eating or drinking contaminated animal products, or by inhaling airborne agents

After the coronavirus pandemic, a zoonotic bacterial infection called brucellosis, caused by a leak at a biopharmaceutical company last year is wreaking havoc in China.

The Health Commission of Lanzhou, the capital city of Gansu province, confirmed that over 6,000 people had contracted the disease Brucellosis, caused by contact with livestock carrying the bacteria Brucella.

The government has tested 55,725 people in the city, of which 6,620 are positive for brucellosis as of now, the Lanzhou government said at a press conference, according to a report on Thursday by the state-owned Global Times.

That represents a big jump from 3,245 positive cases for brucellosis as of September 14.

According to the World Health Organization, humans get brucellosis with flu-like symptoms through direct contact with infected animals, by eating or drinking contaminated animal products, or by inhaling airborne agents. Some symptoms can become chronic and never go away.

According to a statement from Lanzhou's health commission dated September, the outbreak originated at a biopharmaceutical factory owned by China Animal Husbandry Industry Co.

The factory used expired disinfectants during July to August 2019 to manufacture brucellosis vaccines, leaving the bacteria in its polluted waste gas, it said, citing the results from an official investigation.

The contaminated waste gas later formed aerosols, which were carried by wind down to the Lanzhou Veterinary Research Institute, where the outbreak was first recorded in November last year, the health commission said.

The brucellosis vaccine production workshop was shut down in December last year and was dismantled in October, according to Global Times.

Read in App