ALTHOUGH infections due to Listeria monocytogenes are common among animals throughout the world, the organism has not often been associated with human infections. Listeria organisms have been isolated from man in only two types of conditions—infectious mononucleosis and meningitis. The relationship of this organism to infectious mononucleosis is dubious, the literature on the subject having been reviewed and discussed recently by Girard and Murray (1951).
The first authenticated case of Listeria meningitis was reported by Burn in 1935. However, Dumont and Cotoni reported, in 1921, a case of meningitis stated to be due to a diphtheroid, which was subsequently identified as a Listeria, and Atkinson reported five cases of meningitis due to diphtheroids as early as 1917 (before L. monocytogenes was recognized as a species). There are five other cases of meningitis caused by diphtheroids reported in the literature; in two of these the organisms were definitely identified as Listeria
FINEGOLD SM, BRADLEY JG, CAMPBELL MK, GREENBERG AJ. LISTERIA MONOCYTOGENES MENINGITIS: Summation of Literature and Report of Two New Cases. AMA Arch Intern Med. 1954;93(4):515–527. doi:10.1001/archinte.1954.00240280035004
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