German two-year-old dies from E coli infection
Jun 14, 2011, 14:20 GMT
Hanover, Germany - A two-year-old boy died in Germany on Tuesday after contracting a virulent strain of E coli that has killed at least 36 other people, regional authorities said.
The boy, from the town of Celle in Lower Saxony, was the first child to die as a result of the current outbreak, which started in May. Until Tuesday, the youngest known fatality had been a 20-year-old man.
Celle public health officer Carsten Bauer told daily Cellesche Zeitung that the infant died of kidney failure and haemolytic anaemia, or the breakdown of red blood cells, both of which are extreme symptoms of the infection caused by a mutant strain of the bacterium.
The boy's father and 10-year-old brother were also infected with the E coli strain, but had since recovered, Bauer said.
German sales of tomatoes, cucumbers and lettuce began to recover Tuesday, after the vegetables were cleared of blame for the E coli outbreak.
In Brussels, European Union member states negotiated compensation for farmers whose sales plummeted during the outbreak. The outbreak has left around 800 in need of hospital treatment. The European Commission has offered to pay farmers 210 million euros (302 million dollars).
The EU also expected movement Tuesday from Russia on lifting a ban on EU fruit and vegetable imports, imposed while the source of the outbreak was unclear. The deal to lift that ban was reached at an EU-Russia summit on Friday.
Meanwhile German health authorities warned against eating raw sprouts, obtained by sprouting beans, peas and seeds - even if they were grown at home - after these were identified as the source of the E coli outbreak.
Read more about EU