In North-West China several thousands of people tested positive for bacterial disease, brucellosis. This disease emerged after a leak from a state-owned biopharmaceutical plant making animal vaccines last year.
3,245 people have contracted brucellosis as per health officials in Lanzhou city. This disease is usually caused by close contact with infected animal products or animals. It can bring fevers, headaches, and joint pains.
Another 1,401 people tested as an early positive for the disease, and health authorities said there was no evidence of person-to-person transmission so far.
Authorities of China found out that a biopharmaceutical plant made use of an expired disinfectant while producing Brucella vaccines for animals between July and August last year. It means that bacteria did not eradicate in its factory exhaust.
Contaminated gas from the China Animal Husbandry Lanzhou Biopharmaceutical Factory in Lanzhou formed aerosols containing the bacteria, and this was then carried by wind to the Lanzhou Veterinary Research Institute, infecting nearly 200 people there as of December last year.
Faculty members of Lanzhou University and more than 20 students have been tested positive of this disease. Some of the people who tested positive had been to the institute, later tested positive as well, as per Xinhua news agency.
On Friday, the Lanzhou’s health commission said that animals which were most commonly involved in the transmission of the bacteria were sheep, cattle and pigs.
However, person-to-person transmission of this disease is very rare as per the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. It said that some symptoms of this disease may reoccur or never go away.
Symptoms include chronic fatigue, recurrent fevers, arthritis or the swelling of the heart.
Earlier this year the factory apologised and has had its brucellosis vaccine production licence revoked, said Lanzhou authorities.
Compensation for patients would start in batches from October, according to local authorities.