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J Clin Microbiol. 2000 Jul;38(7):2788-90.

Bacteriological and serological findings in a further case of transfusion-mediated Yersinia enterocolitica sepsis.

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  • 1Institut für Medizinische Mikrobiologie, Immunologie und Krankenhaushygiene, Städtisches Krankenhaus München-Schwabing, Städtisches Krankenhaus München-Schwabing, and Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany.


A 13-year-old patient developed severe shock due to administration of a Yersinia enterocolitica-contaminated red blood cell concentrate. Y. enterocolitica (serotype O:9, biotype II) was cultivated from the residual blood in the blood bag and from a stool sample of the blood donor. In the donor's plasma immunoglobulin M (IgM), IgA, and IgG antibodies against Yersinia outer proteins (YopM, -H, -D, and -E) were found. Since the donor remembered a short-lasting, mild diarrhea 14 days prior to blood donation, a transient attack of Yersinia enteritis may be associated with a longer than expected period of asymptomatic bacteremia that causes contamination of donor blood. Serological screening for IgM antibodies against Yersinia outer proteins might offer a way to reduce the risk of transfusion-associated Y. enterocolitica sepsis.

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