African Journal of Biomedical Research

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Outbreak of E. coli 0157:H7 Infections Associated With Ready-To Eat Cashew Nuts in a Nigerian University Community

F Oluwafemi, U Ewelukwa, G Okuwa


Microbiota of retail ready-to-eat cashew nuts was investigated due to outbreak of E. coli 0157:H7 infections during 2006 and 2007 respectively. Moisture content: 3.7 -4.3 and 3.2 - 5.4 respectively. Mesophillic bacteria: 4 - 19 x 10>sup>4cfu/g; Staphylococcus aureus: 2 - 4 x 104 cfu/g; Coliform count: 2 - 3.0 x 104 cfu/g; Fungal count: 14 - 25 x 104 cfu/g were recorded. Aspergillus flavus, A. parasiticus, A. niger , A. terreus, Rhizopus were predominant. Aflatoxins determined using TLC Scanner 3 ranged from 1.4 to 6.0 ng/g. Serologic test confirmed presence of E. coli 0157:H7. Sanitary measures should be implemented.

Keywords: Aflatoxin, cashew nuts, diarrhoea, E. coli serogroup 0157:H7, microbiota, TLC Scanner 3.

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