amoebas

A potentially deadly brain-eating amoeba has been discovered in the St. Bernard Parish Water System at a leaking sampling station that serves more than 44,000 people.

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals notified the water system and parish officials last night.

A 4-year-old child who died of a rare brain infection in early August has led Louisiana health officials to discover that the cause is lurking in the water pipes of St. Bernard Parish, southeast of New Orleans.

DPDx and GS Visvesvara / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Federal and state health regulators have confirmed that a child, who died from encephalitis caused by a rare amoeba, contracted the illness while visiting a home in St. Bernard Parish.

Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals said Thursday that while water samples taken from the home tested positive for the Naegleria fowleri amoeba, initial tests of the parish water system are negative for it.