564. A Collaborative Investigation of an Outbreak of Human Salmonella Infections Linked to Dry Dog Food — “One Health” in Action
Session: Oral Abstract Session: Clinical Epidemiology in Action
Thursday, October 3, 2013: 2:00 PM
Room: The Moscone Center: 300
Background: In April 2012, SalmonellaInfantis (SI) was isolated from an unopened bag of dry dog food manufactured at Plant A collected during routine retail product sampling by the state of Michigan.  PulseNet, a national subtyping network for foodborne disease surveillance, identified eight recent human infections with the same genetic fingerprint (outbreak strain, OS).   In response, a collaborative investigation was initiated, involving a multistate epidemiologic investigation coordinated by CDC, product investigation by   FDA Coordinated Outbreak and Response Evaluation Network  in collaboration with FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine, and its Veterinary Laboratory Investigation Network  partners. 

Methods: A case was defined as a person infected with the outbreak strain between 01/01/2012--6/30/2012.   Epidemiologic, laboratory, and traceback investigations were conducted. FDA determined manufacturer and production information by analyzing production records and pet food lot codes from case-patients and from consumer complaints involving canine illnesses with Plant A pet food exposure.  State partners and FDA tested pet food samples for Salmonella.  FDA and the state of South Carolina jointly inspected Plant A.

Results: Fifty-three human illnesses were identified in 21 states and Canada including 12 hospitalizations; 37% were children aged ≤2 years . Twenty-eight (56%) case-patients reported dog exposure  and 12 (57%) of 21 case-patients reported exposure to pet food manufactured at Plant A. Thirty-one canine illnesses were also linked to Plant A.   OS was isolated from fecal specimens from symptomatic and asymptomatic dogs from case-patient households and from multiple dog food samples which resulted initially in three voluntary recalls.  Based on investigation findings, Plant A initiated an expanded voluntary recall of 16 brands of pet food (>30,000 tons) in May 2012.  FDA inspection findings cited violations involving inadequate microbial testing and control. 

Conclusion: The collaboration between FDA, CDC, and state partners led to the rapid recall of contaminated pet food limiting further exposure to humans and animals.  The outbreak highlights the interactive and interdependent role of the medical and veterinary community in protecting public health.

Kathleen Gensheimer, MD1, Maho Imanishi, VMD, MPH2, Casey Barton Behravesh, DVM, DrPH2, Renate Reimschuessel, VMD, PhD3, Colin Schwensohn, MPH2, Dillard Woody Jr.4, April Hunt, JD5, Katherine Arends, MPH6, Jing Cui, DVM7, Lynn Denny, MPH8, Lavin Joseph, MS2, Carla Tuite1 and David Rotstein, DVM, MPVM, DACVP1, (1)Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation Network, FDA, College Park, MD, (2)Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA, (3)Center for Veterinary Medicine Office of Research, FDA, Laurel, MD, (4)Center for Veterinary Medicine, FDA, Rockville, MD, (5)Pesticide and Plant Pest Management Division, Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Lansing, MI, (6)Surveillance and Infectious Disease Epi Section, Michigan Department of Community Health, Lansing, MI, (7)Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory, Ohio Department of Agriculture, Reynoldsburg, OH, (8)Bureau of Infectious Diseases, Ohio Department of Health, Columbus, OH


K. Gensheimer, None

M. Imanishi, None

C. Barton Behravesh, None

R. Reimschuessel, None

C. Schwensohn, None

D. Woody Jr., None

A. Hunt, None

K. Arends, None

J. Cui, None

L. Denny, None

L. Joseph, None

C. Tuite, None

D. Rotstein, None

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