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University of New Mexico lab rabbit tests positive for anthrax

Comment from Dr. Nass (mnass@gwi.net):

*In the article below, a laboratory rabbit turned out to have anthrax. The spokesperson says don't worry; the anthrax is found naturally in the New Mexisco soil. How did the rabbit get anthrax from soil when it lives in a cage? Twenty people are to receive antibiotics. None are getting vaccine: why would they, since
antibiotics are 100% effective for susceptible strains? -- Meryl

University of New Mexico lab rabbit tests positive for anthrax

Associated Press - November 17, 2007 12:54 PM ET

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) - Two people who performed a necropsy on a laboratory rabbit that has tested positive for anthrax have been given antibiotics as a precaution.

A team of epidemiologists and scientists are trying to determine how the rabbit used as part of a research project at the University of New Mexico was exposed to anthrax.

A spokesman for UNM's Health Sciences Center, Sam Giammo, says the incident is not a public health threat.

He says the anthrax found in the rabbit occurs naturally in the soil in New Mexico.

The state Department of Health announced yesterday that a tissue sample from the rabbit tested positive for anthrax, which can be passed from animal to human.

Giammo says about 20 UNM lab workers also will be given antibiotics.