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Organ donor spreads infection

JACKSON, Miss. - An extremely rare infection has been passed from an organ donor to at least one recipient in what is thought to be the first human-to-human transfer of the amoeba, medical officials said Friday.

Four people in three states received organs from a patient who died at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in November after suffering from neurological problems, said Dave Daigle, a spokesman for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Organs are routinely tested for HIV, hepatitis, and other more common infections, but occasionally rare ones slip through. "We test for the known harmful diseases, but there's not a test for every single pathogen out there," said Kenneth Kokko, medical director of kidney transplants at UMMC.

Two of the recipients are critically ill, but the others haven't shown symptoms, Daigle said. The CDC confirmed the presence of the organism, known as Balamuthia mandrillaris, in one of the recipients.

- AP

Calif. police test cameras on heads

SAN JOSE, Calif. - City police are testing head-mounted cameras to record interactions with the public. The test using 18 patrol officers comes as citizens' groups criticize the department for too often using force during arrests.

Officers are to turn on the cameras every time they talk with anyone. They download the recordings after every shift. The cameras are the size of Bluetooth cell-phone earpieces and attach by a headband above the ear.

San Jose is the first major American city to try the devices, made by Arizona-based Taser International. Taser is paying for the experiment, but the price could be high if San Jose equips all 1,400 officers. Each kit costs $1,700, plus a $99 per officer monthly fee. That's $4 million departmentwide each year.

- AP

Chihuahuas are flown from Calif.

LOS ANGELES - Chihuahuas have been flying out of California since other states learned about the glut of the little dogs in the Golden State.

Twenty-five have already arrived at the Humane Society for Greater Nashua in New Hampshire as part of Project Flying Chihuahua, thanks to Grey's Anatomy actress Katherine Heigl, Kinder4Rescue in Studio City, and American Airlines.

A group of 43 will leave for New Hampshire tomorrow or Tuesday, said Kathy Davis, interim general manager of Los Angeles Animal Services. The Nashua shelter found homes for the first 25 and had a waiting list of 100 people, Davis said Friday. Heigl's foundation has paid the discounted airfare for all 68 dogs so far.

- AP


A Kansas mother praised a 32-year-old neighbor as a "Superman" after her 6-year-old daughter told her he somehow found the strength to lift a car off her. Kristen Hough said Friday that her daughter Ashlyn was treated for minor injuries after Hough's neighbor Nick Harris said he saw a vehicle back out of a driveway and over Ashlyn in Ottawa, Kan.