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State’s largest river cleanup to begin July 8
It’s not every day that hundreds of strangers from across the country converge on one stretch of river with a simple, yet shared, goal of picking up garbage. That, however, is what will happen every day from July 8-13, when more than 350 volunteers will give their time to clean up, learn about and explore 63 miles of the Maquoketa River between Manchester and Canton in Delaware, Jones and Jackson counties.

Drug resistant gene identified in Iowa Salmonella case
The Centers for Disease Control recently detected mcr-1, a drug-resistant gene, in the DNA of a Salmonella isolate sequenced by the State Hygienic Laboratory. The mcr-1 gene causes resistance to colistin, a last-resort antibiotic used for treating infections with known resistance to other antibiotics.

Publication highlights importance of lead testing
In April 2011, the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) began investigating a cluster of lead poisoning cases in rural Iowa related to Ayurvedic medicines. The State Hygienic Laboratory contributed to the investigation by testing samples of the medicines for heavy metals, and found high levels of lead, mercury, arsenic and other heavy metals in the medications.

Labs scientists keep a watchful eyeAPHL video explains environmental health testing.
What is environmental health testing? What are environmental health laboratories? In this video, the Association of Public Health Laboratories explains how lab scientists keep communities safe from contaminants that may be in the environment.

Photo feature: Cartoonists poke fun at influenza
Editorial cartoons captured the public fear and focus on the 1918 influenza pandemic well into the 1920s. The 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic demonstrated that the threat of a novel strain can occur at any time. Excluding pandemics, the 2017-2018 flu season was the deadliest on record for children with 172 associated deaths.