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Increasing Incidence of Listeriosis in France and Other European Countries

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Publication Date
DOI: 10.3201/eid1405.071395
  • Research
  • Biology
  • Medicine


From 1999 through 2005, the incidence of listeriosis in France declined from 4.5 to 3.5 cases/million persons. In 2006, it increased to 4.7 cases/million persons. Extensive epidemiologic investigations of clusters in France have ruled out the occurrence of large foodborne disease outbreaks. In addition, no increase has occurred in pregnancy-associated cases or among persons <60 years of age who have no underlying disease. Increases have occurred mainly among persons >60 years of age and appear to be most pronounced for persons >70 years of age. In 8 other European countries, the incidence of listeriosis has increased, or remained relatively high, since 2000. As in France, these increases cannot be attributed to foodborne outbreaks, and no increase has been observed in pregnancy-associated cases. European countries appear to be experiencing an increased incidence of listeriosis among persons >60 years of age. The cause of this selective increased incidence is unknown.

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