Salmonella infection count at university now at 28

By Katie Wagner, Staff Writer
   Twenty-eight cases of salmonella bacteria infections have been confirmed on Princeton University’s campus as of late Tuesday night.
   The bacteria is most commonly transmitted through food. Symptoms, which include stomach pain, diarrhea, nausea, fever and headache, usually start between six and 72 hours before an individual becomes infected.
   Since April 29, when the university learned of the first of the cases, a total of 20 students and eight staff members have been infected, university spokeswoman Cass Cliatt said.
   The latest date of onset of symptoms for the confirmed cases is May 2, which was before Princeton took its intervention measures to close the Mexican and salad food stations and remove some food foods at its largest dining facility on campus — the Frist Campus Center — Ms. Cliatt said.
    “No source determined, though state health officials say the cases are ‘associated’ with the Frist venue,” Ms. Cliatt said. “The investigators continue to work around the clock analyzing data from people who did and did not get sick.”
   The university continues to receive results from cultures previously taken from those who fell ill from the infection that can take eight to 72 hours to show symptoms, Ms. Cliatt said.
   ”We continue to work closely with state health officials on their investigation,” she said. “We expect to review data next week from the dozens of food case histories taken from people who ate at venues across campus.”
   The New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services had completed more than 85 “control interviews,” Ms. Cliatt said on Friday. The control interviews consisted of health officials talking both to people who fell ill and also those who didn’t on campus to see if there were commonalties between the food case histories of the two groups.
   More than 70 students and staff have reported suffering symptoms typical of both a salmonella infection and gastroenteritis, an illness the university typically sees 10 cases on campus per week around this time of year, Ms. Cliatt said. These students and staff are all being considered as part of health officials’ investigation on campus.