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Wednesday
May112011

Bedbugs Can Carry Drug-Resistant Bacteria

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Bedbugs, the apple seed-sized critters checking in to mattresses nationwide, may be traveling with some risky baggage. A new report suggests that hard-to-tackle pests whose deep bites leave itchy welts can carry drug-resistant bacteria -- better known as "superbugs."

Canadian researchers found methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecium (VRE) on bedbugs collected from three hospitalized patients, according to the report published Wednesday in Emerging Infectious Diseases -- the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's journal.

But whether the bugs can actually infect a person remains unclear.

"There is no evidence that bedbugs can infect people with disease," said Philip M. Tierno, director of clinical microbiology and immunology at New York University's Langone Medical Center in New York City.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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