Nov 11, 2007

Wildlife Biologist died of Plague in US

An Arizona-based wildlife biologist likely died of the Plague, officials from Grand Canyon National Park announced on Friday. Autopsy reports for Eric York, a 37-year-old wildlife biologist for the National Park Service, showed that he had plague in his body.

Officials said that 49 of York's coworkers and others who came within a 6-foot diameter of him were placed on antibiotics.

York was most likely exposed to the plague when he performed an autopsy on a mountain lion that had been infected and most likely killed by it. York was the only person to come in contact with the dead mountain lion, according to officials.

York presented symptoms of exposure on Oct. 30, three days after the mountain lion autopsy. He went to Grand Canyon Clinic, located on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, with flu-like symptoms. York was sent home that day because the symptoms of plague are difficult to detect and are often confused with the flu, officials said. Link


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