Presence of Burkholderia pseudomallei in the ‘Granary of Myanmar’
Win TT., Su KK., Than AM., Htut ZM., Pyar KP., Ashley EA., Dance DAB., Tun KM.
Melioidosis is a frequently fatal infectious disease caused by the Gram negative bacillus Burkholderia pseudomallei. Although it was originally discovered in Myanmar, the disease disappeared from sight for many decades. This study focuses on detection of B. pseudomallei in soil in selected sampling sites in an attempt to start to fill the gaps in the current status of our knowledge of the geographical distribution of B. pseudomallei in soil in Myanmar. This cross-sectional study consists of 400 soil samples from 10 selected study townships from two major paddy growing regions. Bacterial isolation was done using a simplified method for the isolation of Burkholderia pseudomallei from soil. In this study, only 1% (4/400) of soil samples were found to be positive; two of four were found at 90 cm depth and another two positive samples were found at 30 cm and 60 cm. This survey has confirmed the presence of environmental B. pseudomallei in Myanmar indicating that the conditions are in place for melioidosis acquisition.