Escherichia coli (E.coli) are very common bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract, and part of the normal bacterial flora. However, some E.coli strains are able to produce a toxin that could produce serious infection. Humans acquire the infection by consuming contaminated food or water. Following an incubation period of about 3–4 days, a variety of gastrointestinal symptoms appear, ranging from mild to severe bloody diarrhoea, mostly without fever.
Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) is a group of pathogenic Escherichia coli strains capable of producing Shiga toxins, with the potential to cause severe enteric and systemic disease in humans.
Read more about E.coli and STEC
Data on annual reported human cases: graphs and tables