Thirty-nine cases of anthrax reported in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh, 39 people have reportedly been confirmed to be infected with anthrax.

The outbreak is taking place in the Gangni upazila, or administrative region, in the Meherpur district, according to

Of the 39 infected, 17 are currently undergoing treatment at the Gangni Upazila Health Complex. The remaining victims have already received treatment locally.

A physician at the health complex reported that the outbreak began after the residents of Kallyanpur village slaughtered an infected cow on July 5. Those that participated in processing the meat, or who later consumed it, contracted the infection.

Abdus Shahid, a public health official for the Meherpur district, said there is nothing to panic about and that there is a sufficient stock of medicine to deal with treating those affected by the outbreak, according to

The anthrax bacterium can survive in spore form in harsh conditions, even for centuries. In Bangladesh, cattle are often infected while grazing during the rainy season, when water brings the anthrax to the surface of the soil.

The government of Bangladesh only began reporting instances of human infection with anthrax in 2009.

There are several effective treatments for anthrax infection, and some forms of the disease respond well to antibiotic treatments.