Navigation Links
Winter brings flu, summer brings bacterial infections
Date:11/26/2008

CORVALLIS, Ore. In the same way that winter is commonly known to be the "flu season," a new study suggests that the dog days of summer may well be the "bacterial infection" season.

Researchers have discovered that serious infections caused by gram-negative bacteria can go up as much as 17 percent with every 10 degree increase in seasonal temperature. The findings, which were based on seven years of data from infections in a Baltimore hospital, suggest that the incidence there of some of these illnesses might be up to 46 percent higher in summer than in winter.

The cause is not known, scientists said, but the seasonal variation is clear.

"Gram-negative bacteria are a frequent cause of urinary tract, gastrointestinal and respiratory infections, as well as more serious things like pneumonia, wound or blood infections," said Jessina McGregor, an assistant professor in the College of Pharmacy at Oregon State University. "Everyone knows there is a seasonality to some viral infections such as influenza or the common cold, but we're now finding that some of these bacterial infections peak in the heat of summer."

Recognition of these seasonal trends, the researchers said, may improve disease diagnosis, prompt treatments and better interventions to prevent the infections in the first place.

The findings were made by scientists from OSU; Dr. Eli N. Perencevich, associate professor of epidemiology and preventive medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine; and researchers from the University of Florida and the Research Institute of the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. They were just published in Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, a professional journal.

The study examined infections caused by several gram-negative bacteria, including E. coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, E. cloacae, and Acinetobacter baumannii. The greatest increases in infection due to higher temperatures were found with P. aeruginosa, a common cause of burn, external ear, urinary tract and lung infections; and A. baumannii, an opportunistic pathogen that can cause death and serious illnesses, particularly in people with compromised immune systems.

The study also found that there was no apparent seasonal increase in gram-positive bacterial infections, which have a slightly different cell structure and are the source of fewer pathogenic infections in humans.

"Bacterial infections in general have been rising for some time, probably due at least in part to increased antibiotic resistance," McGregor said. "The more we can learn about what is causing them and when they are most likely to occur, the better we can treat or prevent them."

There are several possible causes for the summertime increase in gram-negative bacterial infections, the researchers said, but none are proven. P. aeruginosa is an aquatic organism, and infections caused by it could be linked to more people swimming in lakes or pools during the summer. Cattle have higher bacterial shedding rates in the summer, and the peak of E. coli infections could be connected to higher consumption of ground beef or other factors during the "outdoor grill" season.

Several of these gram-negative bacteria cause urinary tract infections, and a known risk factor for that is recent sexual intercourse the frequency of which also peaks in the summer, when there is more sunlight.

"Regardless of the mechanisms responsible for infections, recognition of the link between the physical environment and the incidences of pathogenic infection could aid in infection prevention interventions or the selection of optimal empirical antimicrobial therapy," the researchers wrote in their report.

The link between this type of bacterial infections and heat, the study suggested, should also be considered along with the many other possible impacts of global climate change.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jessina McGregor
503-494-4722
Oregon State University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Female katydids prefer mates cool in winter and hot in summer
2. Pathway found that lets mosquitoes fatten up, slow down for winter
3. Even the Antarctic winter cannot protect Wilkins Ice Shelf
4. Shuttle brings space-grown strep bacteria back for study
5. UCs NIH grant brings technology from outer space to playgrounds
6. Contraception: progress brings hope for new methods for men
7. Major genetic breakthrough for ankylosing spondylitis brings treatment hope
8. Scientist brings 50 million year old spider back to life
9. Chemist Brings SAFETY Act Expertise to Homeland Security Firm
10. Astronomy technology brings nanoparticle probes into sharper focus
11. First-ever symposium brings together military and civilian medical experts
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/20/2016)... Securus Technologies, a leading provider of ... safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring announced that after ... secured the final acceptance by all three (3) ... Systems (MAS) installed. Furthermore, Securus will have contracts ... by October, 2016. MAS distinguishes between legitimate wireless ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... -- Paris Police Prefecture ... to ensure the safety of people and operations in several ... tournament Teleste, an international technology group specialised in ... that its video security solution will be utilised by ... safety across the country. The system roll-out is scheduled for ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: IBM ... which consumers will be able to interact with IBM Watson ... or text and receive relevant information about the product or ... long sought an advertising solution that can create a one-to-one ... valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and touchpoints. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... , ... Parallel 6 , the leading software as a service (SaaS) ... Virtual Patient Encounter CONSULT module which enables both audio and video telemedicine communication between ... Using the CONSULT module, patients and physicians can schedule a face to face virtual ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016  Regular discussions on a range of subjects including ... two entities said Poloz. Speaking at a lecture ... , he pointed to the country,s inflation target, which is ... "In certain areas there ... common economic goals, why not sit down and address strategy ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... WI (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... supplements, is pleased to announce the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into ... for over 35 years, is proud to add Target to its list of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. ... test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI ... stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate ...
Breaking Biology Technology: