Many had thought that United Nations peacekeeping soldiers brought cholera to earthquake ravaged Haiti in October 2010, but now researchers have found two different strains of disease in some of the first Haitians to be struck by the illness. NPR reports:
Most researchers currently believe that United Nations peacekeeping soldiers introduced cholera to Haiti in October of 2010.
After all, Haiti hadn’t recorded cholera for as long as a century, Nepal had experienced a cholera epidemic in the months preceding the soldiers’ arrival, and the Haitian and Nepalese cholera strains were found to be nearly identical.
But it’s not that simple, says a research group based at the University of Maryland
These researchers have found two very different cholera strains in some of the first Haitians to be struck by the disease.
One is a so-called 01 serotype with close resemblance to the Nepalese strain, found in about half the patients sampled. The other is a type called non-01/O139 that has never been known to cause an epidemic; it was found in 21 percent of patients. Another 7 percent of patients harbored both types.
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