Superbug Gene Found In Drinking Water
HUFFINGTONPOST.COM - A gene that can turn many types of bacteria into deadly superbugs was found in about a quarter of water samples taken from drinking supplies and puddles on the streets of New Delhi, according to a new study.
Experts say it's the latest proof that the new drug-resistance gene, known as NDM-1, named for New Delhi, is widely circulating in the environment - and could potentially spread to the rest of the world.
Bacteria armed with this gene can only be treated with a couple of highly toxic and expensive antibiotics. Since it was first identified in 2008, it has popped up in a number of countries, including the United States, Australia, Britain, Canada and Sweden.
Most of those infections were in people who had recently traveled to or had medical procedures in India, Pakistan or Bangladesh.
"This is not a problem that is looming in the future ... there are people dying today from infections that can't be treated," said David Heymann, chairman of Britain's Health Protection Agency. He was not linked to the research.
Last fall, British scientists analyzed more than 200 water samples from central New Delhi, including public tap water and water that collected in the streets. They found the superbug gene in two of the drinking water samples and 51 of the street samples. Researchers found the gene in 11 different types of bacteria, including those that cause dysentery and cholera.
As a comparison, the scientists also took 70 water samples from a water treatment center in Cardiff, Britain. No superbug genes were found in any of those. The research was paid for by the European Union and was published online Thursday in the journal Lancet Infectious Diseases.
Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>
BREWSTER, Wash. - Deputies and officers in Okanogan County are investigating after a shooting Sunday morning. Okanogan County Sheriff's deputies and officers from the Brewster police Department responded to a call at 502 North Star Road in Brewster for a report of a 19-year-old man with a gun.>>
Authorities in Mississippi say a 9-year-old boy has shot his 13-year-old sister in the head and wounded her after an argument over a video game controller. Monroe County Sheriff Cecil Cantrell told local news outlets that the girl wouldn't give up the video game controller when her brother wanted it on Saturday. He says the boy shot the girl in the back of the head and that the bullet entered her brain.>>
ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) - The mother of a Pennsylvania teenager says she went from not eating or sleeping to crying tears of relief when her missing daughter was located in a popular Mexican resort city. Miu Luu tells The (Allentown) Morning Call she's happy 16-year-old Amy Yu has been found. Federal agents and Mexican authorities found Amy and 45-year-old Kevin Esterly Saturday in Playa del Carmen.>>
TACOMA, Wash. (AP) - Two former Pierce County sheriff's deputies are suing the county, saying the agency tried to cover up how a man who killed his wife and himself obtained the gun he used in the killings.>>
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) - Authorities have released the names of the woman and the ex-husband who shot her to death at a busy Southern California mall. The Ventura County Sheriff's Office identified the victim in Saturday's shooting as 29-year-old Parisa Siddiqi and the suspect as 33-year-old Kevin Crane.>>
MIAMI - Cell phone video captured a driver's almost miraculous escape after an alleged hit-and-run crash in Miami on Sunday. At one point someone bashed in several of the car's windows with a mallet. In the video, the driver of a badly damaged silver Infiniti sport-utility vehicle reversed the car out of the scene of the crash, trying to leave.>>