On the surface, the expansion of HACCP Plans to include [pathogenic E. coli other than O157, also known as “pSTECs”] should be easily accomplished. On closer evaluation, however, there are so many missing pieces, that I for one am finding it difficult to generate reasonable and scientifically based HACCP plans for pSTECs.
One problem is that more research is needed to scientifically validate the numerous beef slaughter interventions for control of pSTECs. The limited studies that have been conducted to date support the concept that intervention for E. coli O157:H7 are also effective for pSTECs http://www.amif.org/research/10-113/ However, specific validation studies are needed to document the reductions for the six regulated pSTECs associated with all slaughter interventions.
Another problem is that it’s much more difficult to design effective testing programs for pSTECs (a group of organisms) than it is for E. coli O157:H7 (a single organism).
Testing meat for the “other E. coli’s” (the six Shiga toxin-producing strains, other than O157:H7, that meat processors must now consider “adulterants” in the legal sense) is going to be more difficult than it looks. A column at Meatingplace.com (free subscription) explains some of the nitty-gritty.
Carbon monoxide from neighbouring restaurants: the need for an integrated multi-agency response
C. Keshishian, Environmental Public Health Scientist1⇓, H. Sandle, Health Protection Nurse2, M. Meltzer, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control3, Y. Young, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control4, R. Ward, Pollution (Technical) Team5 and S. Balasegaram, Consultant in Communicable Disease Control2
Author Affiliations 1Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards, Health Protection Agency, Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1W 9SZ, UK 2North East and North Central London Health Protection Unit, Health Protection Agency, Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1W 9SZ, UK 3North West London Health Protection Unit, Health Protection Agency, 61 Colindale Avenue, London NW9 5EQ, UK 4South West London Health Protection Unit, Health Protection Agency, Springfield University Hospital, 61 Glenburnie Road, London SW17 7DU, UK 5Pollution Team, Regulatory Services, London Borough of Ealing, 14-16 Uxbridge Road, London W5 2HL, UK Address correspondence to C. Keshishian, E-mail: email@example.com
Background Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colourless, odourless toxic gas produced during incomplete combustion of carbon-based fuels. Most CO incidents reported to the UK Health Protection Agency (HPA) are due to faulty gas appliances, and legislation exists to ensure gas appliances are properly installed.
We present three CO poisoning incidents of unusual origin reported to the HPA. In each, residents living above restaurants were poisoned after workers left charcoal smouldering overnight in specialist or traditional ovens whilst ventilation systems were turned off. This led to production of CO, which travelled through floorboards and built up to dangerous concentrations in the flats.
Working with local authorities, these incidents were investigated and resolved, and work was conducted to prevent further occurrences.
The novel nature of these CO incidents led to delays in recognition and subsequent remedial action. Although previously undescribed, it is likely that due to the number of residences built above restaurants and the rising popularity of traditional cooking methods, similar incidents may be occurring and could increase in frequency. Multi-agency response and reporting mechanisms could be strengthened. Awareness raising in professional groups and the public on the importance of correct ventilation of such appliances is vital.
I posted on this two or so weeks ago: A petition has been put up on the We The People citizen-participation page of the White House site, asking for regulation over antibiotic use in agriculture.
It’s been up three weeks now and has 13,581 signatures so far. Looks like the floor for consideration is 25,000 within a month. The month expires March 16.
Here’s the text:
WE PETITION THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TO:
Protect our families’ health by ending the overuse of antibiotics in food producing animals.
Almost 80% of all antibiotics sold in the U.S. are for food animals. Industrial farms routinely feed these drugs to the animals to promote growth and compensate for unsanitary and overcrowded conditions. This overuse creates antibiotic-resistant bacteria that can spread to humans and cause expensive, hard-to-treat illnesses.
In June 2010, the FDA issued draft recommendations on voluntary limits to this overuse—but we are still waiting for action.
With more Americans becoming ill with infections resistant to antibiotics, we must end this practice that threatens the viability of these miracle drugs.
Please sign this petition urging the Obama Administration to end antibiotic overuse in food animal production.
“We try to make books and magazines that we ourselves would want to buy and read. It’s a very collaborative process," said McSweeney’s associate publisher, Adam Krefman, in an email. "There are myriad different interests among our staff, and I think that’s reflected in what we publish. "We’re republishing a cookbook originally written by (‘Eat, Pray, Love’ author) Elizabeth Gilbert’s great-grandma in 1947," he said. "It’s hilarious.”—
Old-media nepotism: Getting your kid a publishing contract.
New-media nepotism: Getting your grand-grandmother one?
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the associations between use of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and smoking during pregnancy and infantile colic in the offspring.
METHODS: We used data from maternal interviews (from pregnancy and at 6 months post partum) from the Danish National Birth Cohort (1996–2002). We included 63 128 live-born singletons with complete information on nicotine exposure during pregnancy and infantile colic symptoms as recorded at 6 months of age.
RESULTS: A total of 46 660 infants (73.9%) were unexposed to nicotine during pregnancy; 207 (0.3%) were exposed to NRT, 15 016 (23.8%) were exposed to smoking, and 1245 (2.0%) to both. A total of 4974 (7.9%) infants fulfilled Wessel’s modified criteria for infantile colic. Prenatal nicotine exposure was associated with elevated risk for infantile colic in the offspring. Compared with the unexposed, NRT users had an adjusted odds ratio (OR) (95% confidence interval) of 1.6 (1.0–2.5; P = .03), smokers had OR = 1.3 (1.2–1.4), and women who both smoked and used NRT had OR = 1.6 (1.3–1.9). Partners’ smoking was not associated with infantile colic after adjustment for maternal smoking.
CONCLUSIONS: We corroborated the association between smoking and infantile colic after adjustment for several possible confounders in a large cohort study. Moreover, we found that infants exposed to NRT prenatally had an increased risk for infantile colic of the same magnitude as those exposed to tobacco smoke. Thus, nicotine may play a role in the pathogenesis of infantile colic.