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Salmonella Outbreak From Cake Mix Now Over


In a January 31st update, the Food and Drug Administration announced that the limited outbreak of Salmonella Agbeni has ended. On November 7th, an investigation was initiated following diagnosis of seven cases in six states. Salmonella Agbeni was isolated from patients and was matched by whole genome sequencing to a specimen obtained from a sample of Duncan Hines cake mix. Conagra Brands initiated a voluntary recall. An epidemiologic investigation failed to yield the causal organism from the environment of the plant and there was insignificant epidemiologic trace-back information available from the limited number of cases.

The specific case illustrates that database systems operated by CDC can detect a multi-state outbreak involving less than 10 patients. Whole genome sequencing can be used to confirm the relatedness of isolates from patients and can correlate infection with a source providing that the pathogen is present in the environment of a processing facility or in product.