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Blame Science for Helping Fuel U.S. Ice Cream Industry’s Recalls

The U.S. ice cream industry’s widening listeria scare, which has prompted at least five companies to recall products, is fueled in part by DNA testing and other new tools that can better detect the bacteria and trace its origins.

Advances in genome sequencing, also called biological fingerprinting, allowed health officials to tie illnesses from as far back as 2010 to listeria in ice cream from Blue Bell Creameries Inc. At least 10 people have been sickened by the tainted products, with three dying after eating ice cream served by a Kansas hospital earlier this year.