NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - St. Tammany Parish reported Friday that one of two animals confirmed with a Burkholderia pseudomallei infection was euthanized Thursday at the recommendation of veterinarians at the Tulane National Primate Research Center (TNPRC). According to parish spokesman Ronnie Simpson, the animal showed no signs of the infection after receiving its last course of antibiotics on Jan. 5.
"Over the past week," Simpson said "the animal demonstrated decreased appetite and was examined by the veterinarian in charge on Thursday," which revealed skin lesions and swelling. He said that several veterinarians were consulted and "a decision to humanely euthanize the animal was made."
Earlier this month, officials said that Burkholderia Psuedomallei was being researched at the facility, but the Director of the Center was unsure how the monkeys contracted it. This is the second animal at TNPRC to be euthanized because of the bacteria.
A U.S. Department of Agriculture investigator was also infected with the bacteria. St. Tammany officials said last week that the investigator was no longer sick and had been discharged from a hospital. They also reported that the person traveled to a region where exposure to the bacteria may have occurred. Federal and state agencies are working to determine if the investigator's illness was related to the facility visit or past travel.