Bourbon Virus Not Found in Ticks at Meramec State Park

Dec 13, 2017

SULLIVAN, Mo. (AP) — State officials say they found no evidence of Bourbon virus in ticks collected last summer at Meramec State Park after a park worker died from the virus.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services announced Wednesday that 7,000 ticks were collected after Tamela Wilson, an assistant park superintendent, died June 23 from the rare disease.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports other state park workers took blood tests but the health department won't release those results. 

One group of ticks tested positive for Heartland virus, a similar tick-borne disease discovered in Missouri in 2009.

Only a few cases of Bourbon virus have been confirmed since it was discovered in 2014 when a man living in Bourbon County, Kansas, came down with flu-like symptoms and died after being bitten by ticks.