A2: Deadly Food Poisoning

Article and Link:

“Student, 20, died in his sleep from food poisoning bug after eating pasta that he’d left out on a worktop for five days’



A college student ate noodles with pasta sauce he had reheated after leaving out for 5 days.   Within 30 minutes he came down with a headache nausea, and stomach cramps.   He began vomiting and having diarrhea.   Thinking he had a case of food poisoning, he went to bed to sleep it off and was found dead in his bed 11 hours later.  Upon investigation it was found he died from Bacillus cereus, which is a spore forming bacteria that produces toxins that causes vomiting and diarrhea.   The autopsy showed that the concentration of B. cereus was so high it caused his liver to shut down.   Samples of the food were analyzed, results determined significant contamination within the pasta, no traces within the sauce.


As we just talked about spores in class, how easy they are to spread and how deadly they can be I found this article fitting.   Having talked about weaponizing spores, this article shows how contaminated food can have deadly effects.   As we were recently talking about generation times, I did some research and found it only takes 26 minutes for B. cereus to double and 8.6 hours do multiply by 1,000,000!   Which sheds light on why the boy died after leaving the food out for 5 days.

Critical Analysis:

I found this article interesting in that it went with a topic we just talk about.   The testing was completed by a medical examiner and scientists, so I believe the results are accurate.   This was written as a news article, they used easy to understand language making it readable for people not in the science community


Could a test stick could be created and marketed that could test for common microbes that cause food poisoning that people could use at home or in restaurants?