Public health officials in Washington, Oregon, and Minnesota are investigating an outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O26 (STEC O26) infections. CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are assisting with the investigation. As of November 6, 2015:
- 41 ill people have been reported from Washington (28) and Oregon (13).
- 14 people have been hospitalized in Washington (10) and Oregon (4).
- There have been no reports of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) and no deaths.
Laboratory testing is ongoing to determine the DNA fingerprint of the STEC O26 bacteria making people sick. These DNA fingerprints are uploaded to the CDC PulseNet database as they become available.
16 isolates from ill people in Washington (13) and Oregon (3) have been uploaded to the CDC PulseNet database. All 16 people were infected with STEC O26 that has the same DNA fingerprint. Laboratory testing is continuing.
A search of the PulseNet database identified one person in Minnesota infected with STEC O26 that has the same DNA fingerprint. This ill person did not eat at a Chipotle Mexican Grill in the week before illness onset. Minnesota’s investigation is ongoing. At this time, the illness does not appear to be related to the outbreak in Washington and Oregon.
Whole genome sequencing, an advanced laboratory technique, is being used to give investigators more information about the DNA fingerprint of the pathogen causing illnesses in Washington, Oregon, and Minnesota.
Washington and Oregon report that most of the ill people ate at several locations of Chipotle Mexican Grill in those states before getting sick.
The investigation is ongoing to determine if the ill people ate a common meal item or ingredient that was served at the Chipotle Mexican Grill locations.
Chipotle Mexican Grill voluntarily closed all of its restaurants in Washington and multiple locations in the Portland, Oregon area until more information is available.
At this time, CDC does not have any information to suggest that Chipotle Mexican Grill locations in other states are affected by this outbreak.
Washington and Oregon health officials are advising residents to see a health provider if they became ill recently after eating at a Chipotle Mexican Grill restaurant.
CDC and state and local public health partners are continuing laboratory surveillance through PulseNet to identify additional ill persons and to interview them. Updates will be provided when more information is available.