Not The Flu
An American Legion Convention held in Philadelphia beginning on this date in 1976, became the focal point for the hunt for a deadly disease that killed 29 of the conventioneers. Others who attended the convention were hospitalized with mysterious flu-like symptoms including high fever, chest pains and lung congestions. Epidemiologists were unable to find any single factor appearing in every case. Soon, Legionnaires' disease spread to 19 states. Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta were called in to conduct what would become one of the biggest and most intensive medical investigations of all time. A breakthrough came in 1978 when the bacterium Legionella pneumophila was isolated in water taken from a cooling tower in an Indiana hotel. Finally, the source of the bacterium was traced to the air-conditioning systems of hotels
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