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Legionella bacteria found in compost products
Date:10/1/2013

acteria 14 of those tested contained a variety of Legionella species. Some of the species found, for example Legionella longbeachae which was present in four brands, are known to have caused human disease.

Dr Beattie added: "A larger scale survey, covering a wider range of compost products is required to determine if these organisms, some disease causing, some not, are as widespread in composts as this initial study would suggest.

"It should be emphasised though, that although Legionella seem to be common in compost, human infection is very rare, especially if you consider the volume of compost sold and used.

"But with any potential source of infection precautions should always be taken. The occurrence of these bacteria in composts in Australia and New Zealand, and the cases of infection that have been traced to compost has resulted in hygiene warnings on compost packaging in these countries, and this is something manufacturers in the UK may wish to consider."


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Contact: John Beaton
john.beaton@strath.ac.uk
44-141-548-2924
University of Strathclyde
Source:Eurekalert

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