A federal investigation of Cronobacter illnesses among infants who consumed powdered infant formula includes two deaths in Ohio.

Typically, two to four cases of Cronobacter are reported annually to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But a current federal investigation of Cronobacter illnesses linked to powdered infant formula that already includes two deaths in Ohio and two illnesses in Texas and Minnesota has widened, according to the CDC.

After the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the joint investigation on February 17, the CDC received additional reports of possible Cronobacter illnesses and another Salmonella illness. The agency is using whole genome sequencing tests to determine if the bacterial strains isolated from infants are genetically related.

The current case total stands at four Cronobacter illnesses in Ohio (2), Minnesota (1), and Texas (1 ) and, one Salmonella illness in Texas. All four infants, who consumed powdered infant formula produced at Abbott Nutrition’s facility Sturgis, MI, were hospitalized. And Cronobacter may have contributed to the deaths of two infants in Ohio, according to the CDC.

Before they became ill, the CDC says infants with Cronobacter consumed the following products: Similac Sensitive, Similac Pro-total Comfort, Similac Advance, and Similac PM 60/40.  These products are among those included in a recall issued by Abbott Nutrition on February 17 and expanded on March 1.

The recall includes Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare powdered infant formula produced at Abbott’s  Sturgis plant. Products included in the recall have all three identifying factors on the bottom of the container.

  • The first two digits of the number will start with the numbers 22 through 37.
  • The code contains K8, SH, or Z2.
  • The product has an expiration date of April 1, 2022, or after.
Similac Alimentum Elecare Recall Cronobacter Salmonella
Some products included in the Abbott Nutrition recall of powdered infant formula.

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