Another possible microbe-related unintended consequence of the Flint water crisis 

The NY Times is reporting that an outbreak of Shigellosis in Flint may be connected to the water crisis there (in that people’s changes in their hand cleaning and other washing behaviors due to the water may have contributed to the outbreak).  See the story (linked below) for more details.  If true this is yet another unintended microbe related consequence of the water issues in Flint. There was also a Legionaires’ disease outbreak about a year ago that was connected to the water crisis.


An outbreak of shigellosis, a bacterial illness that is transmitted when people do not wash their hands, is rising in Genesee County, home to the city of Flint.

Source: Flint Hit With Bacterial Illness as Residents Shun City Water – The New York Times

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Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. My lab is in the UC Davis Genome Center and I hold appointments in the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology in the School of Medicine and the Department of Evolution and Ecology in the College of Biological Sciences. My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis (see my lab site here which has more information on lab activities).  In addition to research, I am heavily involved in the Open Access publishing and Open Science movements.